July is upon us and Aaron Rodgers has yet to report to the Green Bay Packers. Little discussion and progress reportedly has been made between the Packers and Rodgers. All eyes will remain on the two as training camp and the preseason draws near. The 2021 season for the Packers will be an important one. Let us take a look at some of the most important/pivotal Packers for the 2021 season.
Aaron Rodgers/ Jordan Love
Not a surprise to anybody, Aaron Rodgers and or Jordan Love top the list as the most important Packers in 2021. For most teams, the quarterback defines the season and that is no different for the Packers. With Rodgers at the helm, the Packers are a Super Bowl contender. If Love is forced to start the season, with no NFL experience under his belt, the Packers turn into a team with many unknowns. Love reportedly has made strides in his second off-season with the team, but he will not be able to replicate what Rodgers does on the field (nor can most other quarterbacks.) Depending on who is under the center for the Packers, will ultimately decide whether the Packers are viewed as contenders or not.
While the quarterback position is unquestionably the most important for the Packers, the second-year backup to Aaron Jones will also play a pivotal role. Jamaal Williams, who was the backup for Jones from 2017-2020. He started multiple games each year and averaged close to 500 yards rushing each season. Jones is the starter, but Dillon will be called upon on a regular basis. Dillon had a breakout game against the Tennessee Titans last December, rushing for over 100 yards and two touchdowns. He will be asked to do similar things in 2021 as the top backup to Jones. With a small workload in his rookie season, will Dillon be able to withstand a more consistent workload in 2021?
Gary had a breakout season in his sophomore campaign. He totaled 5 sacks last season and provided a more consistent pass rush when Preston Smith regressed from his stellar 2019 season. The Packers will count on Gary again to provide an effective pass rush on the opposite side of Za’Darius Smith. Gary will continue to rotate with Preston, and when his name is called, he will need to be able to get into the backfield. With new defensive coordinator Joe Barry coming from the Rams, the expectation is they will blitz less than previous years.
Like Gary, Savage is coming off a breakout sophomore season. Savage had a pff grade of 75.3, almost 10 points higher from his rookie season in 2019 (67.1). Savage and Amos became one of the best safety tandems in 2020. They will look to continue to build on that in 2021. Heading into the season, PFF rated Savage the 18th best safety in the league, Amos was rated as the 9th best safety. Savage recorded four picks and seven pass breakups and made several critical hits last year. He also picked up his first career sack. Savage will be relied upon by Barry and the rest of the staff to continue to develop as a playmaking safety. If this defense is too take its next step, Savage will be a major piece of the growth.