Ranking the Packers (No. 45): Montravius Adams
GREEN BAY, Wis. – In a tradition that stretches more than a decade, here is our annual ranking of the 90 players on the Green Bay Packers’ roster. This isn’t merely a look at the best players. Rather, it’s a formula that combines talent, salary, importance of the position, depth at the position and, for young players, draft positioning. More than the ranking, we hope you learn a little something about every player on the roster.
No. 45: DT Montravius Adams (6-4, 304, fourth season, Auburn)
Last summer, following a grueling offseason, Adams emerged from training camp as a starter on the defensive line.
“If I had to vote somebody or say who’s most improved from a year ago, it would be Montravius,” defensive coordinator Mike Pettine said during the first week of training camp. “When I first got here and met him in the spring, my opinion wasn’t real high, and he knows that. It was one where we challenged him and I think (defensive line coach) Jerry Montgomery has done an outstanding job with ‘Mont.’ ‘Mont’ has taken the challenge.”
This summer, Adams will be facing a make-or-break training camp that could determine his future in the NFL.
A third-round pick in 2017 with huge athletic upside, Adams has been a colossal disappointment. In Week 1, Adams started and played 22 snaps. In the four games from Week 14 through Week 17, Adams played a not-so-grand total of 20 snaps. With the NFC North title on the line against Minnesota and Detroit in the final games of the season, he played one snap in each game.
In 14 games, Adams finished 17th on the team with 19 tackles. Having played 187 snaps, that equates to 9.94 snaps per tackle. While he was active with that snaps-per-tackle count – Kenny Clark averaged a tackle every 9.76 snaps – his average tackle was 3.8 yards downfield (compared to 1.8 for Clark). Adams just hasn’t gotten better. In 2018, Adams had 26 tackles (coaches’ count), five stuffs (a tackle at or behind the line of scrimmage vs. the run, according to league stats) and six pressures (PFF). In 2019, he had the 19 tackles, one stuff and one pressure. That’s why he played only 31 snaps in the final six regular-season games.
Adams’ disappointing season played into a disappointing season by Green Bay’s defensive line as a whole. Other than the indomitable play of Clark, the first line of defense was the starting point for its porous run defense. Adams, who didn’t record a single tackle during the final four regular-season games and two playoff games, was front and center in that disappointing performance.
“Certainly, I expect us to get better in that area,” general manager Brian Gutekunst said after the draft. “I do like some of the young guys we have. Tyler Lancaster will be entering his third year, he does a good job backing up Kenny at nose. Montravius is going into his fourth year, so this is big year for him and we expect a lot of out him. And Keke being his second year we’re looking for that second year growth out of him. I like the group. We have to get better in that area. It was a little bit of an Achilles heel at times last year, but I like the group and, if we stay healthy, I think we’ll be able to correct it.”
Why he’s got a chance: He’s still an incredibly athletic big man at a position that the Packers really didn’t bolster in the offseason beyond the budget additions of Treyvon Hester and Gerald Willis. That makes Dean Lowry, Lancaster, Keke and Adams the prime contenders to earn snaps opposite Clark. An offseason arrest won’t help, though.