The Green Bay Packers have a lot of depth at a lot of positions. The position they don’t have depth at is defensive line.
That could prove to be a problem.
The Packers are set at two of the positions, so long as no one gets injured. Mike Daniels will start at one defensive end position and Letroy Guion will start at the nose. The other defensive end spot is complicated.
It’s complicated because Mike Pennel can’t stay off the drugs and is suspended the first four games of the season. The Packers supposedly took care of that position when the drafted Kenny Clark in the first round.
For whatever reason, Clark didn’t even start the Packers’ first preseason game. Fourth-round pick Dean Lowry did.
As we’ve predicted all along, Lowry was overmatched. He got pushed around on running plays and didn’t display any pass-rush ability.
Perhaps this was just a message to Clark — first-round pick or not, you’ll need to earn your spot. Pick it up.
Unfortunately, Clark didn’t make much of an impression when he did get in the game either.
While we fully expect Clark to be the day one starter at the other defensive end position, the Packers — to borrow a line from Full Metal Jacket — are in a world of shit if Daniels or Guion gets injured.
And it may be even worse than that.
The Packers will be relying on a rookie — one who may or may not be starting-caliber — for the first four weeks. They’re also counting on their top four staying healthy.
Lowry isn’t ready to contribute and we have our doubts he’ll ever be more than a backup-caliber player.
Clark needs to come on and he needs to come on soon. Then, all three starters need to stay healthy at least until Pennel returns.
If that doesn’t happen — and those are plenty of ifs — the Packers will have the same defense we’ve come to know.
Can’t stop the run, can’t keep up with the offense.
And that’s tiring.