The Green Bay Packers are clearing three more names from their injured reserve list before heading into their 2023 season opener against the Chicago Bears.
According to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2 Houston, the Packers are releasing veteran safety Tarvarius Moore, running back Tyler Goodson and long snapper Broughton Hatcher from IR with injury settlements. The Packers have not formally announced any of the moves yet, but they are expected to include them in their September 7 transactions.
The Packers still have three more players on their injured reserve list: tight end Tyler Davis, offensive tackle Luke Tenuta and seventh-round running back Lew Nichols. It remains to be seen, though, if the team will waive any more of them with settlements.
All three waived/injured players will be eligible to sign with another team once they have satisfied the terms of their injury settlement, which is an agreement to compensate the injured player for an agreed-upon amount of time while they recover. The Packers could re-sign any of the three of them, but they will have to wait a minimum of six weeks under NFL rules to consider bringing back a player given an injury settlement.
The Packers will kick off their 2023 regular season with a road matchup against the Bears at 4:25 p.m. ET this Sunday, September 10.
Tarvarius Moore’s Starter Aspirations Ended With Injury
Moore is perhaps the most significant of the three released Packers as he was originally competing with Rudy Ford and Jonathan Owens for one of the starting safety spots in Green Bay’s lineup for the 2023 season. The sixth-year safety had looked promising in the first half of training camp, but he sustained a knee injury in the second preseason game and was consequently placed on IR before the 53-man roster cutdown — a move that meant he would either spend the entire season there or be released at some point.
Goodson’s departure is also noteworthy even though his chances of making the roster were slim coming into the summer. The second-year running back spent all of last year on the practice squad after shining in the 2022 preseason (28 rushes for 107 yards and a touchdown), but he only received three carries in the preseason opener before going down with a shoulder injury that kept him sidelined for the remainder of camp.
Packers Trusting Familiar Safeties as Week 1 Starters
The Packers entered the offseason with legitimate questions about who would play the safety position for them in 2023. They had already picked up Darnell Savage’s fifth-year option in the previous offseason and had him locked in to return as their free safety, but their other long-term starter at the position — Adrian Amos — was set to become an unrestricted free agent with no heir apparent on the roster to assume his starting role.
The Packers could have tried to keep Amos — he ended up signing a one-year, $1.75 million contract with the New York Jets — but they opted to take things in a different direction, signing Moore and Jonathan Owens and bringing back Rudy Ford and Dallin Leavitt on new deals to set the stage for an open safety competition for the 2023 season.
Now, three days before their season opener, the Packers have decided on Savage and Ford as their starting safeties with Owens, Leavitt and seventh-round rookie Anthony Johnson Jr. in place to back them up, but it remains to be seen how that will work out.
Savage went through trials and tribulations during his fourth season in 2022, at one point getting benched for his missed tackles and breakdowns in coverage at the spot. He eventually played his way back into the lineup as the Packers’ slot defender, but it was a head-shaking season as a whole for the 2019 first-round pick.
The Packers are clearly still comfortable trusting him as one of their starters, but they are not as well-built to withstand another inconsistent year from him in 2023. At least Ford is coming off a solid first season for their defense, but he also had stretches of poor play during his six starts in 2022 and still must prove himself as a full-time starter. If one of them falters, though, the Packers could be in some trouble in the deep field.
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This article was originally published on Heavy.com