The Green Bay Packers have been at training camp for about a week now. During that time, there have been several players that have caused fans to be concerned, namely rookie kicker Anders Carlson who has been inconsistent so far in camp. However, there have also been several players that have stood out and are consistently drawing praise from fans, media members, and coaches.
Of course, performing well early in camp, and in camp in general, is not always an indicator of success during the NFL regular season. If it were, Juwann Winfree would still be on the Packers’ roster. Winfree is an example of a cautionary tale about training camp success from young players.
One NFL analyst believes that Malik Heath, who has drawn high praise from head coach Matt LaFleur as of late, is going to be one of these players.
Is Green Bay Packers Wide Receiver Malik Heath Really Going to Be Worth the Hype?
The Packers are a difficult team to read from the outside. On the one hand, their wide receivers are incredibly young and inexperienced. On the other hand, they are full of potential and could be a major reason for success in 2023.
When it comes to trying to determine the 53-man roster and which wide receivers will make the team, though, it is easy to determine who the top players will be: Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, and Jayden Reed. Following them, Dontayvion Wicks and Samori Toure are also expected to make the team.
That’s five wide receivers, and while Green Bay could take more than that, there is no guarantee that they will. For this reason, in part, Alex Ballentine of Bleacher Report is not buying the success Heath is having in camp so far:
“Yet, wide receiver tends to be a position where at least one person gets media buzz. They are always catching passes and competing, so there are a lot of easy ways to get attention.
“The truth is Heath has an uphill battle to make the team. Watson, Doubs, Samori Toure and Jayden Reed have repped with the ones. The team drafted Dontayvion Wicks and Grant Dubose and Bo Melton is another undrafted free agent who will have a shot to make the team.
“The most receivers the team will likely keep is six. Assuming the first four are locks, that leaves four others competing for two spots and two of them were draft picks.”
Now, one thing that Heath does have going for him is the fact that Grant DuBose has not been able to get on the practice field. He has been nursing a back injury for weeks now.
That being said, Ballentine is right: the most wide receivers the Packers will take is six, and frankly they may not take that many.
There is just one way for Heath to make the team at this point, and it really won’t be by showing out in no-pads and half-pads practices. It will be on special teams.
If Heath is to make the team as a sixth wide receiver, he will have to be a better special teams player than the other wide receivers competing for the roster, as well as the numerous safeties and other defensive backs clamoring for a spot on the 53.
It truly is an uphill battle. Not impossible, but not likely at this point.