Two years ago, Krys Barnes was the Green Bay Packers‘ best inside linebacker.
He could now enter 2022 as the third choice behind De’Vondre Campbell and rookie Quay Walker.
Can Barnes still win a starting job in Joe Barry’s defense? What’s next for Barnes after the Packers drafted Walker in the first round?
Barnes played in 16 games for the Packers in 2021, making 13 starts. He finished the year with 81 tackles, one sack, and four pass defenses.
2021 season review
De’Vondre Campbell was the Packers’ best inside linebacker last season, but Barnes still had an important role to play.
According to Pro Football Reference, Barnes played on just under half of the Packers’ defensive snaps in 2021.
His standout moment came in Week 9 versus the Kansas City Chiefs.
Barnes tackled Chiefs running back Darrel Williams on third-and-goal to prevent what looked to be a certain touchdown. He did well to stop Williams’ momentum and keep him out of the end zone.
Barnes made a season-best nine tackles and a tackle for loss in that game.
Overall, it was another solid year for Barnes.
Will he make the roster?
Yes. There is little doubt that Barnes will make the roster. The question is whether his snap counts will drop after the Packers drafted Walker.
What to expect in 2022
Barnes has been a solid player in the middle of the Packers’ defense the past two seasons, but how much playing time he gets this year could depend on the development of Walker.
If Walker isn’t ready immediately, we could see Barnes play a similar role to last year. But if Walker does impress early on, it’s hard to see how Barnes’ snap counts aren’t reduced.
Even in that case, Barnes will provide good depth and continue to play on special teams.
A trio of Barnes, Campbell, and Walker gives the Packers a great situation at inside linebacker.