Green Bay Packers: 6 Non-Stars Who Are Key to 2020 Success

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - SEPTEMBER 05: Mike Davis #25 of the Chicago Bears avoids a tackle by Raven Greene #24 of the Green Bay Packers during the second half at Soldier Field on September 05, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - SEPTEMBER 05: Mike Davis #25 of the Chicago Bears avoids a tackle by Raven Greene #24 of the Green Bay Packers during the second half at Soldier Field on September 05, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

We know the stars for the Green Bay Packers need to produce, but these 6 non-stars will play key roles to the team’s success in 2020.

From an excitement standpoint, this offseason for the Green Bay Packers did not live up to what 2019 had to offer. But realistically, we never should have expected it to be the same.

After spending $182 million in contracts last offseason and the fact that the Packers have five high-profile free agents of their own to address in 2021, they just didn’t have a ton of cap space to work with. Add in what many would consider an unusual draft, and you have pretty much the same Green Bay Packers team – personnel-wise – in 2020 that you did in 2019.

And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

In what has been a unique offseason, to say the least, the continuity that the Green Bay Packers have could be huge, especially early on. This also means that if they are going to take a step forward in 2020, internal development is going to have to take place.

So as we look ahead to the upcoming season, we know that the stars on this team are going to have to perform. You know who I’m referring to, The Smiths, Aaron Rodgers, David Bakhtiari, Kenny Clark, Davante Adams, Aaron Jones, and Jaire Alexnder, all have to produce or bringing the Lombardi Trophy home is going to be even more challenging.

But behind every successful NFL team are contributions from the non-stars on the roster. They’re still players that we all know, but if these players can produce, it’ll help take the Packers to the next level.

Here are those six players.

Allen Lazard

We, fortunately, saw the emergence of Allen Lazard last season and prior to training camp, he is the favorite to take over that No. 2 wide receiver role. And the Green Bay Packers need him to. Last season we saw how the lack of consistency from the receiver position really stifled the offense at times, and in order to get over that Super Bowl hump, it can’t happen again.

Lazard was able to shine in some big moments – just as the Detroit Lions – he made plenty of plays on third downs, and perhaps most importantly, he has the trust and confidence of Aaron Rodgers. Now we need to see him carry that momentum over and produce for an entire season.

Rick Wagner

Without Brian Bulaga, right tackle is one of, if not the most worrisome position on the team entering camp. There’s little experienced depth on the roster, and Rick Wagner has battled injuries over his career, and to put it simply, he’s just not the same player that Bulaga is.

Even if the Green Bay Packers do plan to run the ball more, the name of the game in Green Bay is still giving Rodgers time in the pocket to do what he does best; and that is pick defenses apart. Additionally, with Matt LaFleur’s outside zone run scheme, seeling the edge and working in space are key components of it for the tackle position.

With few and not necessarily good options behind him, it’s paramount that Wagner stays healthy and plays well this season.

Kingsley Keke

Kenny Clark needs help inside against the run, and with no major offseason additions, if it’s going to happen, it’s going to be because someone already on the roster steps up. And the player who is the most well equipped to do so is Kingsley Keke.

Overall we saw a much improved Green Bay Packers defense in 2019, but their play against the run for a majority of the season was still far from good. If there’s any hope of this unit continuing their ascension, then their run defense has to improve, and that starts with giving Keke more playing time.

Raven Greene

Unfortunately for Raven Greene and the Packers’ defense, he would play only about six quarters in 2019 before being sidelined with an injury. In this Mike Pettine defense, Greene plays the ever-important hybrid linebacker/safety role.

Down in the box, he can provide help against the run but also coverage ability against tight ends and running backs. It was quite evident that the middle of this defense missed him in 2019, and with the uncertainty and inside linebacker entering this season, Greene is going to be key to the defense’s success.

Kevin King

We saw a healthy Kevin King last season, and the combination of him and Jaire Alexander out wide provide this defense with an excellent one-two punch at corner. King even finished with five interceptions, which was tied for the second-most in the NFL.

While this is a talented secondary, it’s also an inexperienced one, and if King’s play declines or he’s injured, he won’t be easy to replace. Ka’dar Hollman is a promising second-year player, but still a bit of an unknown, and up to this point, Josh Jackson has had a disappointing start to his career.

Perhaps Chandon Sullivan could take over, but then that leaves a hole that needs to be filled in the slot. Although many fans are quick to point out his flaws, King was very solid last season, and this Packers’ secondary needs him.

Jace Sternberger

The Green Bay Packers haven’t had a reliable tight end for Aaron Rodgers since the Jermichael Finley days but if Jace Sternberger can make that Year 2 leap like so many people think that he can, well, he could do wonders for this offense.

Next. Trade for Njoku Would Further Complicate 2021 Offseason. dark

Sternberger has shown that he’s a willing blocker, he’s able to lineup all over the formation, and his skill-set makes him a matchup problem for opposing defenses. A productive Jace Sternberger in 2020 will mean very good things for this Packers’ passing game.