Packers 2017 Recap: CB Lenzy Pipkins
One of a trio of promising defensive undrafted free agent defensive backs, Lenzy Pipkins was the first to get an extended opportunity to show what he could do this season.
Thrust into the spotlight in a game everyone would like to forget, Pipkins played 46 snaps against the Minnesota Vikings early in the season.
So what happened to him after that?
- Appeared in twelve games with one start (112 snaps on defense, 113 on special teams)
- Recorded eleven tackles and one pass defensed
Expectations going into the season: Low
Expectations were: Met
Analysis: Opportunities lacking for Pipkins
The big question for Pipkins after the 2017 season is why was he even on the roster?
Not that he couldn’t play. When he had opportunities, he was more or less consistent and brought a high energy enthusiasm to the secondary, even if he didn’t always connect that enthusiasm to production.
But Pipkins barely played on defense at all, so why keep him on the roster?
One of the eternal mysteries of the Ted Thompson era will be the apparent disconnect between the front office and coaching staff when it comes to certain players. The professional talent evaluators apparently believed that Pipkins could contribute or he wouldn’t be on the roster. The coaches, however, didn’t put him into any games that mattered save for the Vikings game. Why?
After his 46 snap effort against Minnesota, Pipkins played just five snaps on defense over the next eight weeks. Playing time at cornerback went to the likes of Josh Hawkins and Jermaine Whitehead instead. A defensible decision if both those players are better, but if Pipkins is at least in the conversation, why not give him a shot?
When Pipkins got his chances (few though they were), he was an energetic and engaged part of the defense. If he gets more chances in 2018, it will be interesting to see what he can do.