Green Bay had high expectations for its top three of Jaire Alexander, Douglas, and Keisean Nixon. Rookie Carrington Valentine impressed over the summer, and former first-round pick Eric Stokes was on the way back from a season-ending injury.
But things look a little different after the trade deadline. Losing Douglas leaves a huge hole in the Packers' secondary. He had been Green Bay's best cornerback this season, not just for his play on the field but also for his leadership.
The Packers gave up a fifth-rounder as well as Douglas, receiving a third-round pick from the Buffalo Bills in return. How does the move impact the depth chart?
How Rasul Douglas trade impacts Packers starting lineup
Expect to see more from seventh-round rookie Carrington Valentine moving forward. While Eric Stokes remains out, Valentine will likely replace Rasul Douglas in the starting lineup. Here is the updated depth chart after the trade:
- CB1: Jaire Alexander
- CB2: Carrington Valentine
- Slot CB: Keisean Nixon
- CB4: Corey Ballentine
- CB5: Robert Rochell
Injured reserve: Eric Stokes
Valentine started the three games Jaire Alexander missed through injury, so he is likely the next man up. That's a big ask for a rookie seventh-round pick.
Green Bay believes in Valentine's potential. Understandably so. He was excellent in the summer, holding his own against the Packers' starting receivers throughout training camp.
His regular-season play has produced mixed results, which is hardly surprising. Russell Wilson went after him in the Packers' loss to the Denver Broncos, a valuable learning experience for Green Bay's young cornerback.
Alexander's back injury further complicates things. He has missed three games. Alexander played last week but was on the injury report, and he struggled against the Minnesota Vikings. If the former All-Pro misses any more time, the Packers could have a starting trio of Valentine, Keisean Nixon, and Corey Ballentine.
Eric Stokes should return from injury at some point, but he will remain on injured reserve for at least three more games.
The secondary was once a strength for this team. But with injuries to Alexander and Stokes and the Packers trading Douglas, teams may target this defense through the air far more regularly.