Starting Center or Bust for Packers’ Josh Myers

While most of the Green Bay Packers' offensive linemen will be asked to play here, there and everywhere, Josh Myers will be anchored at center.
Josh Myers
Josh Myers / Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Green Bay Packers seemingly can put together more offensive line quintets than there are winning Powerball combinations. However, in the multitasking world of a Packers blocker, Josh Myers remains a one-trick pony.

“We need depth, so we’re going to cross-train them all,” offensive line coach Luke Butkus. “Obviously, Josh Myers is our center but, as far as everybody else, we’re going to cross-train them and put the best five out there. It’s competition, so it’s making everybody better.”

Butkus didn’t necessarily mean Myers will be the starting center when the Packers’ kick off the 2024 NFL season in Brazil against the Philadelphia Eagles in four months. However, in the Packers’ quest to find their “best five” offensive linemen, Myers is going to focus on center.

This will be a huge year for Myers, a second-round pick in 2021 who has started every game in his career when healthy but hasn’t become the top performer that general manager Brian Gutekunst envisioned when he made him the first center off the board. Myers hasn’t been bad; he just hasn’t been consistently good.

Typical of Butkus, he spoke only positively about Myers during a break in offseason workouts.

“Just to continue to grow, just like our expectations for everybody,” he said. “Every day, get better. That’s where Josh excelled last year. He did get better as the year went on and he had command of this offense and took charge, was a little bit more vocal toward the end in commanding this offense. So, what do we need from him? Just to get better every single day. Keep improving.”

He’ll have to, because there are at least a couple legitimate challengers. The Packers used a first-round pick on Arizona offensive tackle Jordan Morgan. If Morgan and incumbent starting left tackle Rasheed Walker are among the “best five,” the Packers could move Zach Tom to center, even though he was tremendous at right tackle last year.

Plus, the team used a fifth-round pick on Jacob Monk. A five-year starter at Duke, his 58 career starts included four at center in 2022 and six at center in 2023.

“We have the luxury of having guys that have that versatility,” Butkus said. “Obviously, Elgton (Jenkins) and Zach Tom and some guys that have played multiple positions. It’s fun. You go back and you watch cut-ups throughout the offseason, your teach tapes, and you see Elgton Jenkins at left tackle one game and right tackle, center. He’s played them all. Zach Tom, as well. We’re going to cross-train.”

Morgan played only left tackle at Arizona but the Packers see him as a versatile prospect. Monk started at three positions. Sixth-round pick Travis Glover started at three positions, as well, at Georgia State. Plus, former Eagles first-round pick Andre Dillard has played four positions (thought the vast majority of his snaps were at left tackle) and former Cardinals sixth-round pick Lecitus Smith has ample college and NFL experience at both guard spots and focused on center the last two preseasons.

“It’s a great deal, man,” Butkus said. “Drafting three guys that we brought in and the two free agents that we brought in, what we’re going to try to do is put the best five out there. As a group, collectively, we’ll decide which five are out there. The challenge is for these young guys to come in and quickly learn our language, quickly how we do things. So, they’re a little bit behind; our guys have been here for a few weeks already.

“These guys got to get caught up. It’s a good challenge to have and, like I said, [it’s] May, we have until August, so it’ll be fun.”

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Bill Huber


Bill Huber, who has covered the Green Bay Packers since 2008, is the publisher of Packer Central, a Sports Illustrated channel. E-mail: History: Huber took over Packer Central in August 2019. Twitter: Background: Huber graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he played on the football team, in 1995. He worked in newspapers in Reedsburg, Wisconsin Dells and Shawano before working at The Green Bay News-Chronicle and Green Bay Press-Gazette from 1998 through 2008. With The News-Chronicle, he won several awards for his commentaries and page design. In 2008, he took over as editor of Packer Report Magazine, which was founded by Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Nitschke, and In 2019, he took over the new Sports Illustrated site Packer Central, which he has grown into one of the largest sites in the Sports Illustrated Media Group.