Along with making their practice squad elevations prior to the Thursday night’s game with the Detroit Lions, the Green Bay Packers made two other roster moves, announcing that they’ve placed David Bakhtiari on IR and signed linebacker Kristian Welch off the practice squad to the 53-man in his place.
After playing the Packers first game of the season against Chicago, Bakhtiari has missed the last two games and was already listed as out for the team’s matchup with Detroit. Bakhtiari was still able to play at a very high level in that Bears game, but was dealing with swelling heading into Week 2 with Atlanta, according to Matt LaFleur. When speaking with reporters at this locker following Week 1, Bakhtiari was unable to pin point any specific play or moment against Chicago that led to more issues with his knee.
"“I’ve referenced,” said Bakhtiari following Week 1, “sometimes (it’s) like a sports car getting stuck in second gear. I can’t like get out and get going. I can’t control it. I just have to sit here and accept what my role is and whenever I’m called upon, I’m ready and able to go. Till then it’s making sure everything else from my physical to my mental side is prepared to play.”"
You can read more from Bakhtiari and his latest interview with the Green Bay media here.
Bakhtiari will have to miss at least the next four games being on IR. The soonest he can return is for the Packers November 5th matchup with the Los Angeles Rams.
In Bakhtiari’s absence, we will continue to see Rasheed Walker at left tackle, who has held up very well, specifically in pass protection. He has allowed only two pressures over his two starts and is PFF’s 15th highest-graded offensive tackle this season. With that said, the Green Bay Packers offensive line unit as a whole has be better in the run game.
Taking Bakhtairi’s roster spot for the time bing is inside linebacker Kristian Welch. With De’Vondre Campbell out for the Detroit game, the Packers had only three inside linebackers on the 53-man roster. However, where Welch can make an impact is on special teams. In three seasons with Baltimore, Welch totaled nearly 900 special teams snaps.
In place of Campbell, we will see a lot of Isaiah McDuffie along with some snaps for Eric Wilson as well. Both are core special teams players, but asking them, specifically McDuffie, to take on a full defensive workload along with his normal complement of special teams snaps is a lot. Welch can provide some reprieve, and eat up some of those special teams snaps wherever needed.