Although they may not be a first round draft pick or someone that makes impact plays, they still made the team. The National Football League has historically had some of the best athletes in the world. The Green Bay Packers themselves have a historic Franchise. Thirteen championships, four Super Bowl titles, and numerous NFC North/Central Championships make for one legendary franchise. These five under-the-radar players may still have something to prove, either to themselves and/or their critiques. Josh Hawkins, Trevor Davis, Marwin Evans, Kyle Murphy, Lucas Patrick are all players that strive to have a larger impact on the team.
Born on January 23rd, 1993 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Hawkins went to Kernsville High school. When it came time to play football, Hawkins’ little league football team was even nicknamed the “Packers”. When Josh Hawkins entered high school, he was an all-around athlete. Playing on both sides of the ball at running back and safety, he had what it took to play both ways. In his junior year in high school, he rushed for over 1,600 yards, scored 20 touchdowns, and averaged 7.3 yards per carry!
After high school, Hawkins walked on to East Carolina’s football team, hoping to make an impact. That is exactly what he did. He earned a scholarship after his freshman year. Although he only started 28 out of 50 games at Eastern Carolina, in 2014 he was a semi-finalist for the Jim Thorpe award, which is awarded to the best defensive back in college football. Through all four years with East Carolina, Josh Hawkins earned a degree in sports studies, a minor in business, and is still striving to earn a masters degree.
Coming out of College, Hawkins was ranked 89 out of 259 defensive backs for his senior class. He was hoping to be drafted, and it he was not sure what round he would be drafted in, if at all. He received many calls from teams during the draft but was especially excited when he got a call from the Green Bay Packers. According to John Dell of the Winston- Salem Journal, when Josh was asked about playing for the Packers, Hawkins answered: “I mean, how could you turn them down—the legendary Green Bay Packers?” and “Who wouldn’t want to play for Green Bay?” Hawkins knew that he had something special on his hands when the Packers signed him as an undrafted free agent on May 6th, 2016. In the pre-season, Hawkins had five tackles and two interceptions, which secured his spot on the 53-man roster. He made an impact in four of the Packers’ sixteen regular season games, coming up with just five tackles. As next year approaches, Hawkins will be well prepared and ready for a solid sophomore campaign. It should be interesting to see what he does this season, especially being in such a young and improving secondary.