Packers: Staying healthy key for Nick Perry in 2018

GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 22: Nick Perry
GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 22: Nick Perry /

Staying healthy is key for Green Bay Packers edge rusher Nick Perry this season.

In six seasons with the Green Bay Packers, edge rusher Nick Perry has yet been unable to play all 16 regular season games. Already thin at the position, the Packers will be hoping Perry can stay healthy this year.

Injuries have been an issue for Perry throughout his career. He has missed 24 regular season games in his career, including four last season.

But when healthy, Perry has shown just how talented a player he is. His healthiest season came back in 2016. While he did miss two games, he played at a high level throughout the year, finishing with a career-best 11 sacks.

Many had predicted 2016 would be Perry’s breakout season. He had posted 3.5 sacks in the playoffs the season prior, and finally entered the new year injury-free.

Perry will continue to start at outside linebacker alongside Clay Matthews, who has also struggled to stay healthy in recent years.

Behind the talented duo of Perry and Matthews, the Packers lack experience at outside linebacker.

New defensive coordinator Mike Pettine will be hoping one of the young pass rushers, such as second-year Vince Biegel or Reggie Gilbert, steps up and takes on a bigger role on defense. Perry and Matthews can’t be relied on to get all of the team’s sacks.

Pettine has noted he wants to get more interior pressure, which could be why the Packers signed defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson in free agency back in March. Wilkerson has posted double-digit sacks twice in his career.

Pettine will rely on the defensive line — which could be dominant with Wilkerson, Mike Daniels and Kenny Clark — to create problems up front, making life easier for the edge rushers.

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If Perry can play all 16 games in 2018, he can have another big season for the Packers. Injuries have held him back throughout his career. The team needs him to stay healthy this year.