Packers: 5 breakout candidates entering 2022 season

Green Bay Packers, Eric Stokes - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Green Bay Packers, Eric Stokes - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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Green Bay Packers, Christian Watson
Green Bay Packers, Christian Watson – Mandatory Credit: Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports /

4. Christian Watson

How could we not include the Packers’ talented second-round pick? Green Bay traded up a long way to land Christian Watson, and that wasn’t just to keep him on the bench.

A world-class athlete with elite size and speed, Watson ticks all of the boxes for a future star WR1. How quickly he can adjust to the NFL is the only question.

There will be a learning curve, and Watson needs to earn Aaron Rodgers’ trust. Part of that will be fixing some of the issues with drops he had in college.

But Watson’s upside is obvious.

“He has the total package,” said Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb in May. “Just being around him for the past week and seeing some of the things he can do, he has all the tools. He’s very gifted.”

Matt LaFleur will love his run-blocking ability, a trait that should only increase his opportunities as a rookie. And with Watson’s speed and athleticism, he’s capable of stretching defenses vertically and hitting a home run.

With Marquez Valdes-Scantling gone, the Packers need a new deep threat. Watson could take on that role immediately.

Watson’s long strides and outstanding speed made him excellent after the catch at North Dakota State. Look for LaFleur to get the ball to Watson in space and let him do the rest.

The second-round pick might not become the WR1 immediately, but that doesn’t mean he can’t enjoy a breakout season and play a significant role in this offense.