The Green Bay Packers will kickoff their 2023 season 84 days from now against the Chicago Bears. In celebration of a new era of Packers football and in anticipation for the upcoming season, Wisconsin Sports Heroics will present the top 100 players in franchise history in the 100 days leading up to the start of the regular season. Our rankings are based on Pro Football References Approximate Value stat, which gives a numeric value to each season a player plays in.
Green Bay Packers Greatest Player #84: Jesse Whittenton
In the picture above, John Whittenton can be seen in the front row, second from the right (#47). While Whittenton did not start his career with the Packers, he certainly had the best years of his career in Green Bay.
Whittenton started his career for the Los Angeles Rams, who drafted him in the fifth round of the 1956 NFL Draft. The Rams traded him to the Chicago Bears after two years, but the Bears released him before he even played a game for them.
The Packers signed him as injuries had piled up on their defense. The next year, 1959, Whittenton won the starting right cornerback job for new coach Vince Lombardi’s defense, and held that role until his retirement.
In seven seasons with the Packers, Whittenton intercepted 20 passes. His best season was 1961 when he intercepted six passes and had an AV of 15.
His career AV with Green Bay is 50, but should be higher. As mentioned in previous editions of this countdown, Pro Football Reference’s data only goes back to 1960.
All told, Whittenton made two All Pro teams and won two NFL Championships while with the Packers. Following his retirement, he even spent some time playing golf on the Senior PGA Tour.
Whittenton passed away in May 2012 at the age of 78.
Green Bay Packers Greatest Players List
- #100- Daryn Colledge
- #99- Mike Butler
- #98- Bernardo Harris
- #97- Tyrone Williams
- #96- Dick Himes
- #95- Mason Crosby
- #94- Mike McCoy
- #93- Gilbert Brown
- #92- Ryan Pickett
- #91- Ron Kostelnik
- #90- Earl Dotson
- #89- Paul Hornung
- #88- Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila
- #87- Robert Brooks
- #86- Ken Bowman
- #85- Edgar Bennett