GREEN BAY - Rookie lineman Elgton Jenkins won’t be relinquishing his newly appointed starting job anytime soon.
The Green Bay Packers announced Saturday morning they’re placing guard Lane Taylor, who has a biceps injury, on injured reserve. Taylor started the past three years and was the team’s starting left guard the first two games this season, beating Jenkins in a position battle during camp.
Taylor and Jenkins rotated at left guard last week against the Minnesota Vikings, but Taylor dropped out of Thursday’s practice with the injury. He did not practice Friday, the same day coach Matt LaFleur named Jenkins his new starter.
It’s a role Jenkins said he’s ready for.
“I always try to be (ready),” Jenkins said. “If you stay ready, you don’t have to (get) ready. Each and every week, doing the same things over and over. You never know when your name is going to be called, so just being ready each and every week.”
Taylor is eligible to return from injured reserve in eight weeks, meaning he could start practicing again when the Packers go on their bye week in mid-November. It’s uncertain whether Taylor’s injury is severe enough to end his season.
By November, Jenkins might be already firmly entrenched as the starting left guard. The Packers drafted Jenkins in the second round last spring, the 44th overall pick, because they liked how he fit in LaFleur’s outside-zone-blocking scheme. LaFleur said Jenkins did “an excellent job” against the Vikings.
“He just did his job,” LaFleur said. “Typically up front, unless a guy’s just road-grading somebody and pancaking him, you don’t want to notice those guys too much. And he did his job.”
Without Taylor, the Packers’ depth will be significantly diminished. General manager Brian Gutekunst tried to offset the loss, signing Adam Pankey off the Tennessee Titans practice squad to fill Taylor’s vacant spot on the 53-man roster.
Pankey, who originally signed as an undrafted rookie with the Packers in 2017, spent the past two seasons in Green Bay. He was on the active roster for 16 games in his rookie season, playing one game. Pankey spent 12 weeks on the practice squad last season before being promoted in December, playing one game.