There are dozens of little-known rookies on the Packers’ current roster, but diehard fans know plenty about all the returning vets. Well, almost all the returning vets. Herb Taylor was signed last December, and even though he was part of the team for the final three games of the season, he’s the forgotten man when it comes to projecting which offensive linemen will be around come opening day. The 27-year-old was originally a sixth-round pick of the Chiefs in 2007. He played in 18 games with one start for Kansas City before being released in 2008. Taylor kicked around the league for the next few years before the Packers signed him to replace an injured Derek Sherrod.
With Marshall Newhouse, Bryan Bulaga, Josh Sitton, T.J. Lang and Jeff Saturday locks to make the team, that leaves three or four openings on the 53-man roster. If healthy, Sherrod will be the No. 3 tackle. Evan Dietrich-Smith figures to be the top backup at both guard and center. Taylor, Ray Dominguez, Sampson Genus and rookies Shea Allard, Don Barclay, Jaymes Brooks, Grant Cook, Andrew Datko, Tommie Draheim and Mike McCabe figure to battle it out for one or two spots. Taylor’s edge is that he’s the most versatile and experienced player among that group.
Taylor has taken snaps at both tackle and guard since entering the league, but he lacks size for the outside and strength for the inside. That makes him a good football player without a natural position. That also explains why the former TCU star hasn’t been on a team’s active game day roster since George W. Bush was in the White House. And while the odds are very much against Taylor being part of the 2012 Packers, he shouldn’t be counted out. He impressed people at a workout last December, and let’s be perfectly honest, he won’t be facing the stiffest of competition.