1. Tight end
Releasing Jimmy Graham could be addition by subtraction for the Packers at tight end. In his two seasons with the Packers, Graham looked a million miles from the player he once was. Graham struggled to block and once his consistency as a receiver wasn’t there, he didn’t offer enough to Matt LaFleur’s offense.
His departure opens the door for second-year Jace Sternberger to see an increased role. Sternberger is unproven but did get some valuable NFL experience after missing the first half of his rookie season with injury. He made his first touchdown catch in the playoffs.
Sternberger will be expected to play an increased role on offense this season, and he has the potential to become a go-to target for Aaron Rodgers in the middle of the field.
The Packers also drafted Josiah Deguara in the third round this year. We need to keep expectations low for the entire rookie class, especially for a first-year tight end, which is a difficult position to adjust from college to the NFL. That said, what should help Deguara get on the field is that he could be used at a number of positions. Whether used as a fullback to block, or in the slot to catch passes, Deguara could be a valuable addition to this offense, even if he only plays a backup role this year.
With Sternberger’s development and the addition of Deguara, the Packers should be much improved at the tight end position.