The Green Bay Packers are going to have a deeper wide receiver corps in 2022 than they have had in past years.
Veterans Randall Cobb, Allen Lazard, and the newly-signed Sammy Watkins will lead the group.
Second-year receiver Amari Rodgers and talented rookies Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, and Samori Toure will be looking to prove themselves this season with Davante Adams now in Las Vegas and Marquez Valdes-Scantling in Kansas City.
There is another player that might get lost in the shuffle of names. Fourth-year WR Juwann Winfree should have something to say about the competition at the position this season.
Winfree has spent almost all of his career on the practice squad. After playing in just three games as a rookie for the Denver Broncos in 2019, he was placed on injured reserve and later cut. He was signed to Green Bay’s practice squad in 2020.
He was elevated to the team’s active roster for two games that season. Winfree signed a futures contract with the Packers after that season.
In 2021, he finally got an opportunity to make some plays. In Week 8 in Arizona on a Thursday night, Winfree helped fill in for Davante Adams and Allen Lazard, who were both out due to COVID.
He reeled in four passes on six targets for 30 yards in a dramatic 24-21 road win. He was elevated to the active roster four more times in 2021 and finished the season with eight receptions on 13 targets for 58 yards.
Considering he had to sit behind Davante Adams, Allen Lazard, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Randall Cobb, Amari Rodgers and Malik Taylor, he did a pretty solid job.
Now, Winfree has more of an opportunity to build off of his most successful NFL season. He has 4.4 speed and has good size at 6-1, 210 lbs.
Matt LaFleur will most likely take seven receivers on his final 53-man roster. It would appear that Cobb, Lazard, Watkins, Watson, Doubs, and Rodgers are the locks. Unless the team adds another veteran receiver, which is still possible, the final spot would come down to Winfree, Toure, and Taylor, a core special-teamer.
Make no mistake about it, Winfree has the talent to be a quality receiver in the NFL. He has the size, speed, and skills.
This is his best opportunity to gain trust from Aaron Rodgers. It is his time to go make it count.