The Green Bay Packers have an offensive line problem. Despite national outlets discussing trade rumors for the team surrounding the wide receiver position, there is still an established veteran offensive lineman available in free agency who could provide the team with a much-needed spark.
Alex Ballentine with Bleacher Report provided a handful of available free agents who the Packers should considering pursuing, rather than sending away future assets in a possible trade. They made sure to address the offensive line problem, suggesting that the Packers could make a run for former All-Pro offensive lineman Daryl Williams.
“If they do [decide to pursue an offensive lineman], it would make sense to target Daryl Williams,” Ballentine said. “The mauler has played both right guard and right tackle for the Bills and played 1,172 snaps, giving up just four sacks on the season. Regardless of how the Packers choose to handle it, replacing Newman has to be a top priority to get out of their losing streak.”
Ballentine also encouraged the Packers to take a long look at wide receiver Will Fuller V and edge rusher Dee Ford, with both veterans still available in free agency.
Who is Daryl Williams?
With how poorly the Packers offensive line has been playing, a free agent move would make a lot of sense, and there might not be an available veteran out there with the resume that Daryl Williams has.
Coming out of high school in Lake Dallas, Texas back in 2014, Williams was a 4-star recruit with a solid frame at 6’5″ and 270 pounds. Despite playing in the state of Texas, Williams decided to cross state lines to play for a Longhorns rival in the Oklahoma Sooners.
Williams grew into that frame over five years in Norman, Oklahoma. After redshirting his freshman year in 2010, Williams eventually became a full-time starter for the Sooners, playing in 36 games from 2012 through 2014. With his experience and consistency at a Big 12 program, Williams was taken in the fourth round of the 2015 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers.
It took some time, but Williams eventually became a full-time starter for Carolina in 2017, and the move paid off. He was named a second-team All-Pro that season, starting all 16 games at right tackle. He played five seasons in Carolina before signing a deal with Buffalo, playing two seasons for the Bills.
After being released this offseason, Williams is now a 30-year-old free agent looking for another opportunity. Given his experience and versatility as a guard or tackle, Williams could be an ideal fit for the Packers to help get the struggling Royce Newman off of the field.
Who Else Could Fix Green Bay’s OL Problem?
Williams would be an intriguing addition, but the Packers have a few in-house options who have yet to get a look on the starting offensive line.
Third-round pick Sean Rhyan was a solid right tackle for the UCLA Bruins last year, but has yet to see the field at the NFL level. In fact, he’s spent multiple games inactive as a healthy scratch, which is a concern. However, at some point the Packers will need to see what they have in their Day 2 draft pick.
Even fourth-round pick Zach Tom could be an intriguing option, either at guard or tackle for the Packers. He spent time as a center and left tackle for Wake Forest in college, and his versatility and quickness made him an intriguing prospect. He already saw some action in Week 1 against the Minnesota Vikings, so perhaps the Packers will look to him again.
Regardless of what happens, it’s clear that the Packers need to shake things up on the offensive line if they want to keep Aaron Rodgers upright.