The Green Bay Packers boast one of the best NFL rosters in 2022 and it’s why they’ll enter the season near the top of NFL power rankings. While quarterback Aaron Rodgers is coming off consecutive MVP seasons and linebacker De’Vondre Campbell became the breakout player in 2021, new stars will emerge this season.
Green Bay certainly needs it to happen. While there are a lot of stars on the roster, depth issues at wide receiver and injuries along the offensive line require young players to emerge. For a team tight against the NFL salary cap, the Packers will be depending on others to have breakout seasons to help them finally get over the hump and into the Super Bowl.
Let’s look at three Green Bay Packers players who are poised for breakout seasons in 2022.
Allen Lazard emerges as Green Bay Packers’ No.1 receiver
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Allen Lazard has been as solid a wide receiver as the Packers could have asked for throughout his four years with the team. That is, when he was healthy. Lazard has only played a full slate of games once in his four seasons. In addition to his superior blocking, the fifth-year pro has one of the highest passer ratings when targeted in the NFL over the past three seasons.
- Allen Lazard stats (2021): 40 receptions, 513 receiving yards, eight touchdowns, 132.8 QB rating when targeted, 1.7% drop rate
The Packers and their fans got a glimpse of what an offense with Lazard as the top receiving looks like in Week 3 of the 2020 season. Against the New Orleans Saints, Davante Adams was out with an injury. Aaron Rodgers targeted Lazard on plays that typically would have been for Adams.
The result: six receptions for 146 yards and a touchdown in a 37-30 Green Bay victory. Now that Adams is a Las Vegas Raider, Lazard has the opportunity to show that his breakout game two seasons ago is just the start of things to come.
Josiah Deguara was the Packers top receiving tight end in 2021
Josiah Deguara suffered a torn ACL in Week 2 of his rookie season, opening the door for Robert Tonyan to set a single-season touchdown record (11) by a tight end in 2020.
At that point, Deguara seemed destined to become another third-round bust by general manager Brian Gutekunst. After Tonyan tore his ACL in 2021, though, it opened a door for Daguara to resurrect his young career.
Despite early optimism, it is believed that Tonyan will start the season on the PUP list. While Marcedes Lewis is back for year 17, he isn’t the receiving threat he once was. That leaves passing plays for tight ends up to Deguara, Tyler Davis, and Dominique Dafney. All were on the roster last season and it was Deguara who proved to be the best receiving threat. If that trend continues in 2022, Deguara could play a huge role until Tonyan is cleared to return.
Darnell Savage will bounce back from a tough 2021 season
Coming off a challenging 2021 season, the Packers showed their confidence in Darnell Savage by exercising his fifth-year option for the 2023 campaign. While the move might have surprised a few considering how poorly the young safety played, Savage’s contributions prior to that demonstrate what Green Bay is buying into.
For perspective on Savage’s struggles in 2021 compared to his previous two years.
|Darnell Savage stats||Comp. % Allowed||Yards Allowed||QB rating Allowed||PFF grade|
As one can see, 2021 was awful for Savage compared to his first two seasons. However, there is reason to be hopeful that he will have a better season in 2022. The Packers’ secondary is back to full health, which will elevate the play of the entire defense. Additionally, it will be Savage’s second season in Joe Barry’s defense. Having spent a year in the scheme, he now has a better understanding of how best to play in the system.