9. Shemar Jean-Charles
Shemar Jean-Charles should get some opportunities in the slot this season. Chandon Sullivan is likely to be the first choice to play the “star” role in Joe Barry’s defense, and it’s a position we could also see safety Darnell Savage play.
Jean-Charles will have a part to play on defense, but it feels like he was a draft pick for the future. His development will be important this season.
8. Isaiah McDuffie
Isaiah McDuffie gave the Packers little choice but to keep him on the 53-man roster after impressing in the preseason. No Packers defender earned a higher Pro Football Focus grade than McDuffie in the preseason.
For now, McDuffie’s primary role could be on special teams. The Packers have De’Vondre Campbell, Krys Barnes, Oren Burks, and Ty Summers all ahead of him on the depth chart. McDuffie could be another future starter on defense but might play most of his snaps on special teams in his rookie season.
7. Jack Heflin
Few gave Jack Heflin, an undrafted free agent, a realistic shot of making the 53-man roster earlier in the year, but an impressive summer secured his spot. Heflin called making the roster the “greatest day of my life”, and he will have a role to play as part of the defensive line rotation this season.
If he can translate his preseason performances into the regular season, we’ll be seeing a lot more from Heflin moving forward.