Fresh Faces that Could Crack the 53-Man Roster

Five new names that could be on the active roster this season. 

Now that the draft is over and the Packers have a full 90-man roster heading into minicamp, I thought I’d look at some names for Green Bay that could earn a spot on the 53-man roster with a strong training camp performance. There aren’t any draft picks on this list because that felt too potentially obvious, so everyone here is either a new undrafted free agent or a practice squad/reserves contract holdover from last season. 

Tipa Galeai, EDGE

Galeai came to the Packers as an undrafted free agent in April of 2020. He had a strong training camp and just missed the active roster, with the Packers carrying Randy Ramsey and Jonathan Garvin as their fourth and fifth edge rushers. Galeai was activated from the practice squad for Week 1 against the Vikings, but he played only nine defensive snaps. Green Bay protected him more than once on the practice squad, ensuring he’d stay with the team and compete for another opportunity this season. At Utah State in 2018, Galeai led the Mountain West Conference with 10 sacks. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com had this to say about Galeai in his scouting report last year, and he nailed it, “There is definitely enough rush talent and explosiveness for a team to draft him and groom him, but he can be subdued by longer, stronger tackles. If he can keep adding to his rush repertoire and improve his hands, he’s got a shot, but he may need a stash-and-grow plan on a practice squad no matter who takes him.” Going into his second training camp, Galeai has a good shot to crack the 53-man roster right out of camp this year. 

Patrick Taylor, RB

Like Galeai, Taylor came to Green Bay as an undrafted free agent in April last year, however, he spent the bulk of his rookie season on the non-football injury list after undergoing foot surgery. He didn’t officially begin practicing with the Packers until December, and now will have a full offseason program to showcase his talents as he competes for the RB3 role. At Memphis, Taylor rushed for 2,884 yards, averaging 5.4 yards per carry, and had 36 rushing touchdowns and three receiving touchdowns. At 6-2, 217lbs, Taylor isn’t necessarily a traditional size for a running back, but his skillset is ideal for Matt LaFleur’s offense, as he’s got experience in pass protection and in the passing game. He’ll be competing with Mike Weber, Dexter Williams, and seventh-round draft pick Kylin Hill during camp, but he has all of the physical tools to claim a spot in the running backs rotation behind Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon.

Jack Heflin, DL

While the Packers did select a defensive lineman in the fifth round of the draft (TJ Slaton out of Florida), the position group is thin enough that undrafted rookie Jack Heflin also could find a path to the roster. He spent three seasons at Northern Illinois before finishing his collegiate career at Iowa as a graduate transfer. At NIU in 2019, Heflin was named Defensive Player of the Year by his coaching staff, and he also earned first-team all-conference honors from Pro Football Focus. At 6-3, 304lbs, Heflin has the size to play defensive tackle, but scouting reports project him as more of a block-eater than a pass rusher. In a room that has Kenny Clark, Kingsley Keke, and Dean Lowry as mainstays, and Slaton very likely claiming a spot, Heflin’s main competition will come against Tyler Lancaster and practice squad holdovers Anthony Rush, Willington Previlon, and Delontae Scott. 

Coy Cronk, OL

Last year’s tackle depth was incredibly slim. Beyond David Bakhtiari and Billy Turner, Rick Wagner and Yosh Nijman were the only players listed as true tackles on the roster, though we know in a pinch Elgton Jenkins is more than capable of playing anywhere along the line. While the Packers addressed the offensive line in a major way through the 2020 and 2021 NFL Drafts with three selections in each, Green Bay also brought in three additional undrafted free agents at the position this year, and all are so versatile they’re listed on the roster page as “OL” and not as guards or tackles. One of those linemen is Coy Cronk, who likely will start at tackle during training camp. Cronk began his career at Indiana starting 40 games at left tackle before a nagging ankle injury derailed the last few seasons of his collegiate career. After sustaining the injury in 2019, he transferred to Iowa for his 2020 season (where he replaced now-Super Bowl winner Tristan Wirfs at right tackle) and looked solid before reinjuring his ankle. The offensive line room is loaded, and most of the players are position-versatile, so Cronk’s battle for a roster spot will likely be an uphill one. But if he sticks at tackle where there’s less depth, he could find his way onto the 53 right away. 

Ryan Winslow, P

Green Bay brought in competition at kicker, punter, and long snapper. Aside from Mason Crosby who’s all but a roster lock, special teams positions will truly become camp battles this year under new special teams coordinator Maurice Drayton. Winslow spent most of 2019 with the Arizona Cardinals before joining the Packers in late 2020. At Pittsburgh, Winslow had 226 punts for 9,513 yards, averaging 42.1 yards per punt. In 2017, he also completed one pass for a touchdown on a trick play against Virginia Tech. 

 

----------------------------

Maggie Loney is a writer for Cheesehead TV and podcaster for the Pack-A-Day Podcast and Pack's What She Said. Find her on Twitter at @MaggieJLoney.

NFL Categories: 
13 points

Comments (43)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
mnbadger's picture

May 18, 2021 at 12:23 pm

If Winslow can be accurate directionally, be consistent and have above average hang time, I want him. Don't care about averages if one is for 66 and two are for 35 for a net average of 45.3. Sound like anybody we know? FAS! & GPG!

+ REPLY
7 points
7
0
LambeauPlain's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:15 pm

Consistency in the punting game instantly upgrades STs. Scott's best year was as a rookie. Last year he regressed under Mennenga. I hope Drayton is not Slocum 2.0 who followed the unimpressive Novak and fielded pathetic ST play. Maybe he can resurrect Scott's game because he has a great leg...until he doesn't.

Drayton obviously impressed Coach Matt in some ways to keep him coaching teams he shared blame for poor results. Maybe Matt knows many suggestions made by Drayton were unheeded by Mennenga. But last year was keystone cops on coverage units with wide open return lanes and return teams didn't seem to know where the return was going.

Not hiring Rizzo in 2019 still mystifies me when Murphy jumped in and vetoed the hire only to approve it two days later after lobbying by Matt and Gutey...by then Rizzo said "no thanks...i am moving on."

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
13TimeChamps's picture

May 18, 2021 at 03:54 pm

How much coaching actually goes into punting?

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
Coldworld's picture

May 19, 2021 at 08:11 am

Maybe a little more than appears to have been the norm recently would be advisable?

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
dobber's picture

May 19, 2021 at 08:14 am

...every pro golfer has a swing coach...

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
Since'61's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:17 pm

Your first sentence pretty much describes Ray Guy who is in the NFL HOF. I'd be willing to take consistency and above average hang time at this point. Directional punting would be a great nice to have. Thanks, Since '61

+ REPLY
7 points
7
0
HankScorpio's picture

May 18, 2021 at 05:47 pm

"Don't care about averages if one is for 66 and two are for 35 for a net average of 45.3. Sound like anybody we know?"

Yeah. Mason Crosby. He was wildly inconsistent for years. He got over it eventually.

+ REPLY
0 points
1
1
splitpea1's picture

May 18, 2021 at 12:37 pm

I like the idea of having a new punter on the team, as we've seen pretty much what we're going to get from JK Scott. Winslow was impressive in limited action with the Cardinals; I guess he got released because they were hesitant to part ways with Lee, a very reliable 17-year veteran. But one team's trash is another one's treasure, so I think it's worth giving the new guy a shot if he proves to be better leading up to the season opener.

+ REPLY
6 points
6
0
nostradanus's picture

May 18, 2021 at 12:46 pm

Winslow - has a chance, JK has been so inconsistent Punting especially in cold weather. Um guys, the Packers are a cold weather team.

Galeai - I hope he put on some beef in the off season, watching his college tape the guy can rush the passer! I hope he makes the year 2 jump.

Cronk - apparently he is thought of highly by some scouts, maybe PS for a year. Chronic ankle injuries are tough though, I know this from my basketball days :~{

Taylor - Man I loved this signing and the Packers thought enough of him to give him a 2 year contract so he could heal and redshirt last year. He was terrific at Memphis!

Bonus pick 1:Stanford Samuels III CB -dude flashed in camp last year, he has a chance he was a playmaker at Florida State!

Bonus Pick 2 : Delonte Scott - Edge - Scott was a terrific pass rusher at SMU and also flashed in camp, if he gets bigger he could be a real find as an Edge player.

Can’t wait for the training camp battles to begin!

+ REPLY
19 points
19
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:12 pm

I think Scott will progress - more so than Galeai. And I anticipate that Samuels will be one of the more 'hidden' surprises of training camp. Also looking forward to seeing Taylor stride it out.

+ REPLY
3 points
3
0
MajWhiplash's picture

May 18, 2021 at 02:42 pm

Your correct a mundo on ankles injuries. I've had more then my fair share of those and along the way I read once you damage and ankle or ligament it will never heal 100%, and recurring injuries are often the result of that. Man do I agree with that. \I can look at a pot hole and my ankle starts hurting.

+ REPLY
5 points
5
0
nostradanus's picture

May 18, 2021 at 03:39 pm

Haha me too! I can step on a damn pebble and my damn ankle starts rolling!

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

May 18, 2021 at 07:37 pm

For all the ankle sprain comments. There ankle sprains and then there are ankle sprains (like any injury different levels of severity). If you do severe damage and I have been there it is my opinion it never is the same. Forget ice skating or roller blading years later.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:00 pm

Some interesting names:
Galeai - some raw talent but I have doubts whether it can be adequately refined into productivity.
Patrick Taylor - ladies and gentlemen - your 3rd running back
Jack Heflin - I can see him replacing Lancaster - at least a depth player
Coy Cronk - ? - staying sound his biggest challenge - re-curing foot problems - maybe a farrier is the answer.
Ryan Winslow - a prompter for Scott - who will probably show well in camp - then regress - then cycle is repeated next year.

+ REPLY
5 points
5
0
Coldworld's picture

May 18, 2021 at 02:19 pm

Galea needed to add both strength and bulk. If he hasn’t he’s not going to progress, if he has, can he still move like last year. If he can he’s a find as a situational pass rusher. Can he learn to cover? That could be his ticket-a role absent last year.

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
greengold's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:01 pm

Thanks for doing this Maggie!

I wound up having to watch some Patrick Taylor Jr. highlights as a result. WHOAH MAN!!!!!!!!! He is going to be good for the Packers. Given our current situation, I can easily see us keeping 4 RBs this year.

One of the FUNNIEST things I've ever heard an announcer say after one of Taylor's runs for a TD, dragging 3 defenders into the end zone:
"Is that, uh... with quotation marks around the F and the Y?"

6-3 223. That dude is a load. Ran a 4.57. You're not kidding about his skill set matching up well with LaFleur's O. Can easily see him in a Packers uni for a long time.

I like Tipa Galeai too. Should be super interesting to see him, Randy Ramsey and Jonathan Garvin battle for the roster after development time. Speed rushers are needed in this D under coach Joe Barry.

+ REPLY
6 points
6
0
LambeauPlain's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:31 pm

I can see 4 RBs too with Taylor backing up AJD and Hill backing Up AJ. It could be the most prolific RB squads in the NFL for a HC that insists his OL are excellent run blockers for half the O plays called.

Makes it probable since rosters are expanded this year for the regular season to 55. One of those could be a 4th RB.

+ REPLY
9 points
9
0
KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

May 18, 2021 at 08:17 pm

I agree!

Has anyone noticed how the Bill's have been focusing on their OL like the Packers. 3 drafted this year. Successful teams draft big guys on both sides of the line.

Sorry Rodgers!

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
Lphill's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:05 pm

Can't go into this season with JK Scott , just a big disappointment .

+ REPLY
-3 points
0
3
BuckyBadger's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:07 pm

Hope Gute learned his lesson on drafting punters. Can get those guys through competition. The other kicker is a camp leg so Crosby can sit on the tackle dummies playing on his phone until game time.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
Since'61's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:25 pm

I think Taylor is the best of this group. I hope that he makes the team. He has good size and speed. I think that he can be a punishing runner. Good guy to utilize against a tired defense in the second half when the Packers are trying to extend a lead and chew up the clock. The last time the Packers had a Taylor in the backfield the guy did pretty well. Thanks, Since '61

+ REPLY
9 points
9
0
LambeauPlain's picture

May 18, 2021 at 01:35 pm

Cronk, like Taylor could be shiny diamonds in the rough if they are healthy. Cronk was so promising until he got hurt. He is the complete package for a prolific T...if the ankle will hold up.

+ REPLY
5 points
5
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 03:19 pm

You know the Packers were aware of Cronk's foot problem(s). Perhaps having the country's top foot specialist (Dr. Robert Anderson) contributed to their decision. And if Cronk requires further or restorative surgery - what better surgeon? I'm thinking that the Packers may very well slow play it with Cronk.

+ REPLY
6 points
6
0
nostradanus's picture

May 18, 2021 at 03:42 pm

Good point, may the Doc can put a cadaver tendon in there and tighten it up a bit....

+ REPLY
3 points
3
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 04:32 pm

Human or race horse?

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
nostradanus's picture

May 18, 2021 at 08:59 pm

Secretariat

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 10:05 pm

"Big Red" - good choice. I saw him race. The only race horse whose stride lengthened the longer he ran.

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
greengold's picture

May 18, 2021 at 10:46 pm

Secretariat was insane.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
Since'61's picture

May 18, 2021 at 11:01 pm

Sadly, Big Red was a once in a lifetime event. I still get chills when I rewatch or even think about his magnificent win at Belmont to win the triple crown back in ‘73.

One of my top 3 sports performances that I have ever seen.
It’s breathtaking and defines why any of us watch sports.
With the way they train horses in this era I doubt that we will ever see anything like Secretariat again. One in a million at least. Thanks, Since ‘61

+ REPLY
3 points
3
0
Alberta_Packer's picture

May 18, 2021 at 11:18 pm

Absolutely, he was a one-in-a-million. Why? Because he had an over-sized heart - twice the normal size. For you racing aficionados - another one-in-a-million race horse was the great pacer "Dan Patch" - also had an over-sized heart.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
TarynsEyes's picture

May 18, 2021 at 02:01 pm

I would hope that a 5 player turnover on the 46 game-day roster.

+ REPLY
-2 points
1
3
MajWhiplash's picture

May 18, 2021 at 02:48 pm

i wish all these guys the best. Just hope they did a fair look. Sometimes I wonder, do they get looked over as in, we cant let you replace someone we spend capital on via a draft pick or we look bad.

On the other hand most of these undrafteds who played at lesser schools were there for a reason: lack of size, strength, speed, agility. Trying to come into the pros from that perspective is a tough road to hoe and most dont make it.

There is just flat out a lot of guys who aren't pro baller caliber and should find a new hobby.

+ REPLY
-2 points
0
2
KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

May 18, 2021 at 08:20 pm

There is always the diamond in the rough. The late bloomer!

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
egbertsouse's picture

May 18, 2021 at 02:52 pm

Crooooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnk!

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
greengold's picture

May 19, 2021 at 03:46 pm

I like Coy Cronk a lot. Bubble Gum & Band-Aids. Came back from injured ankle twice. Has PROTOTYPE size, athleticism. 6-4 318 with 34 1/4" arms. Swing Tackle. Tons of BIG10 experience.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
wildbill's picture

May 18, 2021 at 04:58 pm

Always fun to see new, talented, fresh faces. Sadly it means somebody lost their job and maybe out of the NFL. Hey life comes at you fast and I hope they enjoyed the ride while it lasted

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
NorCalPacker685's picture

May 18, 2021 at 05:16 pm

How about Christian Uphoff? So I never ever have to watch Will Redmond play football for the Green Bay Packers.

+ REPLY
2 points
3
1
Leatherhead's picture

May 18, 2021 at 06:35 pm

I like Benkerts chances to stick as the #3 QB.

I’m sure his acquisition has nothing to do with Rodgers.........

+ REPLY
1 points
2
1
nostradanus's picture

May 18, 2021 at 09:02 pm

Benkert’s Atlanta pre-season looked pretty good.
He seems fairly accurate and can run.
I don’t feel as bad now about losing the Golden Boyle
:)

+ REPLY
4 points
4
0
Johnblood27's picture

May 18, 2021 at 09:32 pm

Parents shoulda named him Lance...

+ REPLY
2 points
2
0
DarkHorse833's picture

May 19, 2021 at 03:18 pm

only ones i see having real impact is taylor an tipa. i seen there tapes an know why there here. tipa needs to be a swish army knife with his moves an show more aggression an taylor is gonna be used in different ways to get his play time, maybe he'd be an endzone rusher from the 20 yard line. i'm still a lil ticked we didn't draft better an i think thats why this team is probably gonna have problems...old style drafting in a new style era...i don't think works

+ REPLY
-1 points
0
1
CoachDino's picture

May 20, 2021 at 03:08 am

Good list of talented longshots with a chance.

PFF graded Scott at &8 (good for a distant second out of 40 punters (excelled in hangtime and non returnable kicks)
Ryan winslow was at 53 and couldn't beat out Andy lee who has been one of the lowest grade punters over the last few years.

Ryan Winslow is a camp leg and a hollow threat to Jk to improve after the ne ST Coach talked big in the news conference. he is going nowhere. Sure he is inconsistent (most are) but has the best hangtime to distance ratio in the league, the biggest problem was the coverage unit, same terrible unit we sa against kick-offs as well. This kid should only get better. plus he plays in some of the worst conditions in the league.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0
greengold's picture

May 20, 2021 at 05:55 am

Both of our coverage units v. PR/KR were at or near the WORST in the NFL in 2020.

+ REPLY
1 points
1
0

Log in to comment and more!

Not a member yet? Join free.

If you have already commented on Cheesehead TV in the past, we've created an account for you. Just verify your email, set a password and you're golden.