Packers rookie Zach Tom wants to play all 5 positions along the offensive line

One of the main goals of Green Bay Packers rookie offensive lineman Zach Tom is to develop an ability to play all five positions along the offensive line. At Wake Forest, he started games at left and center tackle, two completely different positions. In Green Bay, he could turn into a legitimate option at tackle, guard and centre.

At this point in the process, it’s unclear where the Packers will pitch him as a rookie.

“Right now, I’m ready for anything. It’s one of my strengths. I want to be able to play all five positions,” Tom said on Friday. “They haven’t told me anything specific yet. I’m just ready for anything.

The Packers made Tom the 140th pick in the fourth round of the draft. He enters the NFL as one of the most athletic and versatile offensive linemen in the 2022 draft class.

Versatility is a valuable asset for a young player, especially along the offensive line. Tom’s ability to play in multiple positions could help Matt LaFleur’s side replace some of the flexibility offered by deceased veterans Billy Turner and Lucas Patrick – two players who have combined to start games at all five positions over the course of of the last three seasons – and giving him a legitimate shot at game time in his first season.

“The more versatile you are, the more valuable you are. The more you can do, the more likely you are to get out there, and that’s my goal,” Tom said. “It’s not really that much pride, I just want to get on the pitch, so I want to do everything I can.”

Tom started 23 games at left tackle and 14 in the middle for Wake Forest. He said the center is more mentally taxing, in terms of making calls and communicating information to the offensive line, while the left tackle is harder physically due to facing longer and more athletic players, especially on the third try.

Tom understands Green Bay’s history of developing mid-range offensive linemen, especially players with his all-around skills, and he’s already comfortable under offensive line coach Luke Butkus.

“I think he’s going to make me a really good player,” Tom said.

Digestion of the playbook and physical preparation should give Tom a chance to compete for an entry-level job as a rookie. Things aren’t settled on the right side of the offensive line, especially while Elgton Jenkins — a player he admires and wants to emulate — recovers from an ACL injury.

Knowing all five spots could give Tom a chance to compete for one of the open spots right away.

“I want to be someone who can play all five positions at a high level,” Tom said. ” That’s the point. This is my main objective for the offseason and during the camp. I want to be someone who can go out there in any position and be counted on to perform at a high level.

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