Rashan Gary Praises Young Green Bay Packers Pass Rusher

Rashan Gary, Green Bay Packers
Packers Coverage

One of the strengths of the Green Bay Packers on defense is their pass rush. Leading the way is Rashan Gary, fresh off a monster extension signed in 2023. When healthy, he has been one of the most dominant pass rushers in the NFL.

Despite being on a pitch count last season as he worked his way back from ACL surgery, opponents could not block him. Rashan Gary ranked near the NFL in several pass-rushing categories and the Packers hope that continues in 2024 and beyond.

Green Bay has a solid mix of options to mix in along with Gary. Veteran Preston Smith is still on the roster and the team has young players such as Lukas Van Ness looking to make an impact. A first-round pick in 2023, Van Ness was brought along slowly, as many Packers rookies are.

But, in the second half of the season, we got a glimpse of what could be on the horizon. Over the final eight games of the season, including the playoffs, the Iowa product racked up 4.0 sacks and eight quarterback hits.

It wasn’t a product of receiving more playing time, as Van Ness played over 50 percent of the defensive snaps only once in that stretch; Super Wild Card Weekend against the Dallas Cowboys. Rashan Gary praised the work his young teammate has put in, as he couldn’t hide his smile when asked about Van Ness.

“He’s not even scratching the surface, man. He’s just starting,” Gary said. “The player he was coming in, from rookie minicamp to the guy he’s leaving now to have an offseason to work on his game, is completely different.

“I know it’s going to be a big jump next year because he has the same type of work ethic as me and he’s hungry for everything he has in front of him … He understands what he needs to work on, and I know he’s going to get better at it. I just can’t wait to see him tear it up next year.”

That is some very high praise for the 2023 first-round pick from Rashan Gary. You aren’t going to find many, if any people that would argue against that. Van Ness has all of the tools to become a dominant pass rusher, giving the Green Bay Packers a potentially dominant duo to rely on.

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