David Bakhtiari And Elgton Jenkins Could Be Back Early In The Season

Elgton Jenkins
Wikimedia | LaDanian1000000

Ernesto Cova

Everybody's talking about how the Green Bay Packers lost Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling, and for very good reasons.

But as important as those guys were for the offense, they may not be the most important absences around Aaron Rodgers come Week 1 of the NFL season. Instead, not having David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins could wind up being even more of a concern.

Fortunately for the team, it seems like they could be both back on the gridiron sooner than expected, according to GM Brian Gutekunst:

"No timelines right now. They're both doing really, really well," Gutekunst said. "I think they both have a shot to play early in the season. But we're not going to put any timelines on it. If we get down to that point, where we think that's the best thing for the football team, to keep them on (the physically unable to perform list), we will. But they're progressing really well."

Packers Trust The Young Guys

David Bakhtiari
Wikimedia | Merson

The Packers haven't slept on their laurels, though. They've moved most of their young offensive linesmen all around the OL, with Yosh Nijman. Lucas Patrick and Jon Runyan are all getting reps at left tackle:

"I know we've had a lot of confidence in those guys," Gutekunst said. "They are young players but those guys have had pretty significant game experience, Yosh, Runyan and (Royce) Newman. Josh (Myers) got a lot of work last year as a rookie. I like the depth of our group, and certainly getting those two All-Pro guys back certainly changes things a little bit and I'm confident those guys will get there. But even without those guys, I really like how those guys are working. They've got a tough test everyday with the group they're going against and that's only going to make them better as we head into the season."

They Have Faith On Their Team

David Bakhtiari
Giphy | American Family Insurance

Needless to say, adding a healthy Bakhtiari and Jenkins to an already impressive OL unit would only make them more of a Super Bowl contender, which is why they'll play it safe and won't take any unnecessary risks:

“We do have two significant players that haven’t been out there that will be coming back,” Gutekunst said. “Certainly, getting those two All-Pros back changes things a little bit, and I’m confident those guys will get there.”

The Packers are again expected to end on top of the NFC North, so they can afford to wait until they are back to full strength and ready for the playoffs.