Green Bay Packers tight end Colt Lyerla catches a pass during training camp at Ray Nitschke Field before he was injured and waived. Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Green Bay Packers Mailbag: Lyerla, free agents and more

Well fans, we are to our third Green Bay Packers mailbag!

I just wanted to add my apologies for being three days late with this one. When you get up Friday after going to see “Guardians of the Galaxy” late the night before (I very much recommend it), work a morning shift, go and run an event, get up early to entertain the person who came for your event, then speed out of town to your best friend’s bachelor party (quick shout out to a Mr. Josh McDaniel), then have another busy day on Sunday at church, you tend to not have a lot of time to put together a mailbag.

No worries though, we got some reading for you to do and cannot wait to get your questions for next week!

NOTE: This post will be the area in which we will accept questions for next week, as well as in a reminder post at midweek. Just scroll down to the comments below and ask away!

Mike Brand asked …

“Since Colt (Lyerla) has struggled in training camp does he make the team at all? Even the practice squad? I know he has the tools but can he be coached up to the NFL level?”

Well Mike, Colt Lyerla has to hope they give him a chance. After seeming to start to put some good practices together Lyerla hurt himself in the Family Night practice. It was a shame, too, because he really should not have tried to hurdle Jumal Rolle which left him open to a hit by Jarrett Bush. Thankfully for him it is just a sprain, but it still keeps him from valuable practice time as well as time to show himself off and force the issue of cutting another player instead of him.

I think Lyerla can make it, it just may be difficult if his injury is more serious than the simple sprain it is thought to be right now. If it is just a sprain he has a chance to get back on the field during the preseason.

This was it for our reader questions this week, so we grabbed a few from the staff.

If Jerel Worthy can’t get back on the field, do the Packers look at someone like Johnny Jolly?”

Oct 13, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Green Bay Packers tackle Johnny Jolly (97) warms up before the game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

While there is always a chance, the Packers and neck injuries have not been very friendly with one another. Both Nick Collins and Terrence Murphy’s careers ended due to neck injuries, and Jermichael Finley’s might as well. Johnny Jolly might unfortunately fall victim to the type of injury he has and not get another shot.

The other thing he has working against him is the current versatility at the linebacker positions. You do not exactly need six linemen if a few linebackers can handle putting their hands in the dirt. That is exactly what the Packers have in Julius Peppers and Mike Neal, though Neal has dropped a lot of weight and might not be a bit too light to handle it capably. All in all, I think the defensive line looks like this:

Next we have …

“In addition to Randall Cobb, who are the other players who will be free agents in 2015?”

The easy answer, quite a few – 22, in fact. Several of them may not even make the current team, however, and some are not a big part of the team and might not be retained in 2015. The big names on the list are Tramon Williams, B.J. Raji, Bryan Bulaga, Jamari Lattimore, John Kuhn, Davon House, Matt Flynn,  and Scott Tolzien.

I think this is Williams’ last year. With the amount of depth at corner and Williams’ age, it is time to move forward and draft another rookie corner to develop next year. Raji is completely dependent on his production this year, and I do not think his production gets him a big deal. His position is not flashy unless your name is Ndamukong Suh.

Green Bay Packers tackle Bryan Bulaga attempts to block Houston Texans outside linebacker Brooks Reed during a 2012 game at Reliant Stadium. Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Bulaga has a real chance to stay if the price is right. Ted Thompson is not afraid to let him go and simply sign Don Barclay (restricted free agent) to a smaller deal if he has to, but I think Bulaga wants the chance to really show what he can do. I think he stays.

Lattimore is an intriguing prospect mainly because he has good intangibles but if he does not show himself to be better than Brad Jones he could simply be on the outside looking in.

This is probably Kuhn’s last season, as sad as that makes all of us. He may get the veteran minimum from the Packers next year but it is easy to tell his position is not a requirement in the offense. The one thing that might save him is special teams play.

Davon House can really get himself into consideration with a good year. If Williams ends up on the outs, he could lock up one of the outside corner spots with a great year.

One of the backup quarterbacks should stay. I think it is Tolzien, but that is admittedly dependent on his play (go figure). Flynn has been serviceable but the Packers really need a backup who can add to the win column. Flynn can do that, but Tolzien has a chance to thrive in that role. Let’s hope he grabs it.

Please blow up our comments feed, our Facebook, and our Twitter with your questions, and we will do our best to provide the answers next week!

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