The Green Bay Packers took advantage of the NFL’s looser tryout rules and hosted six players for workouts on Monday afternoon, including guard Kahlil McKenzie — son of former Packers and Raiders executive Reggie McKenzie.
According to the NFL’s official tryout list from Monday, the Packers auditioned McKenzie along with defensive tackle Walter Palmore (Missouri), nose tackle Javier Edwards (Colorado) and linebackers Joey Alfieri (Stanford), D’Juan Hines (Houston) and Drew Lewis (Colorado) for possible spots on their 80-man training camp roster.
Today’s tryout list. pic.twitter.com/u1tlRNt6Jv
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) August 17, 2020
The Packers also activated second-year tight end Jace Sternberger and new defensive lineman Treyvon Hester off the COVID-19 reserve list on Monday, filling the two openings on their active roster that became available when they released three players over the weekend. They will still need to clear additional space before bringing back either of the other two players who remain on the list: long snapper Hunter Bradley and outside linebacker Greg Roberts.
Follow the Heavy on Packers Facebook page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
Kahlil McKenzie, Born and Raised in Green Bay
Reggie McKenzie worked in a variety of front-office roles for the Packers after his eight years as an NFL linebacker, beginning as a pro personnel assistant (1994-96) and working his way up to pro personnel director (1997-2002) and, later, director of football operations (2008-11). He left to become general manager of the Oakland Raiders in 2012 and now serves as a senior personnel executive for the Miami Dolphins.
While his father worked for the Packers, the younger McKenzie was born and raised in Green Bay and even played briefly for Green Bay Southwest High School before his family’s move to California. Once out west, he built a reputation as one of the top defensive tackles in the 2015 recruiting class and eventually signed with Tennessee, where he spent three years before declaring for the 2018 NFL draft and going to the Kansas City Chiefs in the sixth round.
The Chiefs converted McKenzie from a defensive lineman into a guard during his first NFL offseason, but he never ascended above a practice-squad role as a rookie and was released at the end of his second training camp with the team in 2019.
McKenzie held a practice-squad position with the Seattle Seahawks for the 2019 season and, after his contract expired in January, was signed to play with the Los Angeles Wildcats in the XFL before league operations were suspended in April. He rejoined the Seahawks briefly after the XFL folded but was again shown the door in late July.
Could Packers Be Exploring More Depth at ILB?
The Packers didn’t announce any new signings on Monday after their batch of workouts, but that three linebackers were in the building for tryouts could suggest the team wants to add more depth to their inside unit.
Christian Kirksey — who picked off one of Aaron Rodgers’ passes in Monday’s practice — is looking good so far as the Packers’ new man in the middle, but the departure of both of last year’s top inside linebackers leaves the depth behind him in question. Ty Summer and Oren Burks figure to be the top contenders for the primary backup role, but the rest of the crew boils down to first-year players (fifth-round pick Kamal Martin and UDFA Tipa Galeai).
The Packers also still have Curtis Bolton, who was an early camp favorite as an undrafted rookie last year before he tore his ACL and missed the remainder of his first season. He was declared physically unable to perform on July 31 and continues to count against the team’s 80-man roster total; however, the team could be tempted to move on from him if his health doesn’t seem to be improving.