The Green Bay Packers took a minor hit to their defensive depth losing CB Bashaud Breeland and S Kentrell Brice. Breeland agreed to a one-year deal with the Kansas City Chiefs and Brice signed a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Losing Breeland hurts because he was a quality experienced veteran who the young corners looked up to. Jaire Alexander, Kevin King and Josh Jackson have a lot of potential but are young and inexperienced. Alexander established himself in his rookie year as the top corner in Green Bay. King has showed flashes but hasn’t been able to stay healthy. Jackson struggled much of his rookie season, but the Packers will be in good shape if all their young corners make a jump this season.
Tramon Williams is still the veteran leader and can help bring the young guys along.
As for Brice, he was a liability both in coverage and as a tackler. According to Pro Football Focus, Brice allowed a passer rating of 150.1 on 29 throws into his primary coverage and missed 12 of 57 tackle attempts last season.
Finding two NFL-worthy offensive tackles isn’t an easy task for any team. Finding six or seven is nearly impossible. And yet that’s what the Green Bay Packers are being forced to do this week, as they are likely going to be without their two starting tackles, as well as their three main backups when they take on the Chicago Bears on Thursday night.
The team released its final injury report Wednesday, and it listed starters Bryan Bulaga and David Bakhtiari as doubtful, which when combined with Green Bay having already placed Jason Spriggs, Kyle Murphy and Don Barclay on injured reserve, leaves the Packers without their top five tackles.
The plan Thursday night appears to be starting Justin McCray at left tackle and rookie undrafted free agent Adam Pankey at right tackle. It’s possible the team could also use the recently signed Ulrick John, though it’s unclear how up to speed he is with the offense.
It wasn’t all bad news on the injury front, though, as wide receiver Randall Cobb (chest) will play, as will safety Kentrell Brice (groin). Both of them missed the Cincinnati game. Defensive tackle Mike Daniels (hip) and outside linebacker Nick Perry (hand) are listed as questionable. Daniels told reporters he expects to be a game-time decision.
Kickoff at Lambeau Field is set for 7:25 p.m.