Packers Trading Young OL to Jaguars for Draft Pick: Report

Van Lanen Trade

Getty Head coach Matt LaFleur of the Green Bay Packers watches action during a preseason game against the New Orleans Saints at Lambeau Field on August 19, 2022 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The Green Bay Packers are trading former sixth-round offensive lineman Cole Van Lanen to the Jacksonville Jaguars for an undisclosed draft pick ahead of the 80-man roster cutdown deadline, according to ESPN’s Rob Demovsky.

Van Lanen — a Green Bay native and 2021 sixth-round pick — had been competing for a depth role on the Packers’ offensive line this summer after spending his entire rookie campaign on the practice squad. With three new drafted rookies in the mix and David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins both recently activated from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, though, the 24-year-old was a longshot to make the 53-man roster.

The Packers should be happy they got something in return for Van Lanen instead of the nothing that would have come with waiving him at the deadline. It is possible they knew there would be some interest in him once he hit the waivers and didn’t like their chances of being able to retain him for their practice squad, but they might also just feel comfortable with their current offensive line depth.

Either way, Van Lanen will now get a fresh start in Jacksonville in hopes of making their active roster as either a backup guard or tackle.

The latest Packers news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Packers newsletter here!

Join Heavy on Packers!

Packers Make Remaining 80-Man Roster Cuts

Trading Van Lanen wasn’t the only move for the Packers on Tuesday ahead of the 4 p.m. league deadline for rosters to be reduced to 80 players. According to Demovsky, the Packers also waived safety Vernon Scott with an injury designation (shoulder) and placed running back Kylin Hill on the regular-season PUP list, meaning he will miss at least the first four games of the season and not count against the team’s 53-man roster count until he is activated again.

Those moves — along with Monday’s cuts of rookies Ty Clary and Chauncey Manac — bring the Packers to the required 80-man limit. They will stay at 80 players until next Tuesday, August 30, when the 53-man roster cutdown begins for the regular season.

The Packers waiving Scott is, perhaps, the most surprising of Tuesday’s roster moves given he has been operating as their No. 3 safety throughout training camp. Scott had benefited from increased opportunities at camp with Darnell Savage Jr., Dallin Leavitt, Innis Gaines and rookie Tariq Carpenter all sidelined with injuries, but he suffered a shoulder injury in the second preseason game against New Orleans last Friday that appeared to be severe. He could still revert to the Packers’ injured reserve list if he goes unclaimed on the waivers, but it doesn’t help him for the upcoming season.

Safety Addition Seem Inevitable for Packers

The Packers’ depth problem in their safety room has gone from bad to worse since the start of training camp. Right now, Adrian Amos is the only healthy safety on their roster who has played defensive snaps in the NFL, while the rest of their group consists of a 2021 fifth-round pick (Shawn Davis) who is on his second team, a USFL standout (Micah Abernathy) and an undrafted rookie (De’Vante Cross). That’s far from ideal for a defense that otherwise has the makings of an elite unit heading into the 2022 season.

To make matters worse, the free agent market for safeties isn’t exactly booming at the moment. Landon Collins is one of the last notable veterans left on the market after former Chicago Bears safety Tashaun Gipson signed with the San Francisco 49ers on August 22. The next-best options include Ricardo Allen, Nate Ebner and Tavon Wilson.

Fortunately, the upcoming cut deadline does present the Packers with a few opportunities to find help. There are bound to be some quality players among the discarded next week as teams trim their numbers to 53 players, and there will also be incentives for teams to try moving pieces via trade. The Packers would be wise to explore both options even if their safety room gets healthier in the coming weeks.

Read More