Under Ted Thompson, the Green Bay Packers always end up keeping an undrafted rookie or two around on their final roster. This year, they’re keeping at least three — quarterback Joe Callahan, cornerback Josh Hawkins and safety Kentrell Brice.
The biggest surprise of the group has to be Callahan. It’s not that he didn’t play well during the preseason. He did.
It’s surprising if only because Callahan played at a Division III college and Thompson rarely keeps three quarterbacks on the roster.
Clearly, the Packers felt if they released Callahan, another team would have claimed him. Otherwise, they surely would have done so and put him back on the practice squad.
Both Brice and Hawkins are notable because they play positions where the Packers have great depth.
Brice was a terror throughout the preseason, but we knew the Packers already had four safeties slated for the roster — Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Morgan Burnett, Micah Hyde and Chris Banjo. A fifth isn’t unheard of for Thompson — Sean Richardson was that guy last year — but it’s no given.
Brice easily earned that spot in our estimation. The same goes for Hawkins.
He played better than fellow cornerbacks Roberston Daniel and Demetri Goodson. Hawkins had two interceptions in the preseason and regularly blanketed receivers in coverage.
These guys obviously belong and it’s nice to see that Ted agrees.
There seems to be a difference in this undrafted rookie class, however. You get the feeling these three guys could actually turn into valuable contributors for the Packers down the road, rather than just being guys who fill out the bottom of the roster.