Packers Sign 16 Players To Fill Out Practice Squad

Grant DuBose, Alex McGough, Corey Ballentine, Packers
Packers Coverage, NFL Analysis Network

The Green Bay Packers finished their roster cutdowns earlier this week, paring the roster down to 53 players for the regular season. It wasn’t an easy process as the Packers ended up making 37 transactions to get down to that number.

Like every year, players come out of nowhere to push for a roster spot. That leads to the coaching staff and front office having to remove another player from the roster in their spot. This year, the Packers had three undrafted free agents play well enough to earn a roster spot, which changed the team’s calculations.

With one of the youngest initial 53-man rosters in the NFL, the Packers’ practice squad also features a ton of youth. Green Bay signed 16 players to their practice squad and all of them were with the team during training camp, keeping some semblance of continuity.

The group was split perfectly down the middle, as there were eight offensive players and eight defensive players on the practice squad. On offense, the team’s third quarterback, former USFL MVP, Alex McGough was signed. He will be joined by running back Patrick Taylor and fullback Henry Pearson in the backfield.

In the trenches, offensive tackle Kadeem Telfort and center James Empey were signed. Towering tight end Austin Allen was also brought back. Ben Sims, one of the players the Packers claimed on waivers, was a tight end and was added to the 53-man roster.

As for the pass catchers, 2023 seventh-round pick Grant DuBose and undrafted free agent out of Rutgers, Bo Melton, were signed. They beat out Ole Miss undrafted free agent Malik Heath for the sixth wide receiver spot on the 53-man roster.

Defensively, Chris Slayton was the only lineman retained. The Packers originally kept six defensive linemen on their 53-man roster, but one of them, Jonathan Ford, was released after wavier claims. Ford could take the final practice squad spot as an exemption was given for International Player Pathway player, Kenneth Odumegwu.

Odumegwu is one of three linebackers who were signed to the practice squad along with Arron Mosby and Keshawn Banks. Tariq Carpenter was the second player released with Ford to make room for roster claim, safety Zayne Anderson. He could be brought onto the practice squad with the open spot as well.

In the secondary, cornerbacks Corey Ballentine and Kiondre Thomas were signed. Versatile Innis Gaines, who was a safety but listed as the backup slot cornerback on the training camp depth chart, and Benny Sapp were signed. Green Bay opted to keep only four cornerbacks on the 53-man roster and seventh-round pick, Anthony Johnson Jr., showed enough with his versatility to earn a spot as well.