Thoughts On Packers First 2012 53-Man roster

Ted Thompson got down to his initial 53 man roster on Friday night. For now the Packers have kept ten rookies (six drafted and four undrafted) and 27 defensive players vs. 23 offensive players. Expect both of those numbers to change a little.

Thompson kept just two backup offensive linemen--neither of whom figures to be a tackle. The release of veteran Reggie Wells means Thompson will be scanning the waiver wire in search of a tackle to add to the mix. With Derek Sherrod on the PUP list, the unit needs some insurance for the first half of the season. An injury to Newhouse would probably mean TJ Lang would replace him and Evan Dietrich-Smith would move in at guard.

Thompson elected to keep undrafted rookie WR Jarret Boykin over holdover practice squaders Tori Gurley and Diondre Borel--both of whom figure to land somewhere on Saturday. The coaches raved about Boykin's preparation, intensity, route running and hands. He ran a slow 40 time which kept teams away at the draft but he ended up leap frogging over two guys the team were high on.

For now four running backs made the team along with John Kuhn. I believe either Starks or Saine will be cut loose--probably when Mike Neal comes off his four game suspension. When Erik Walden returns from his one game suspension, look for someone like rookie safety Sean Richardson or Boykin to head to the practice squad.

The release of defensive lineman Daniel Muir was a surprise--it seemed he was having a strong camp. Former Dolphin Philip Merling made the team, and as a vested veteran, his salary is guaranteed. But he may become expendable when Neal returns.

We'll find out shortly who will be brought back to the practice squad. Expect to hear names like QB BJ Coleman, WR Dale Moss, FB Nic Cooper, T Andrew Datko and S Anthony Levine (if he clears waivers). And again, expect a tackle to be added before the team returns to the practice field.

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