Unlike a certain reluctant defensive lineman who chooses not to earn his money in D.C., Packers defensive lineman B.J. Raji has no qualms about being the man in the middle of Green Bay’s three-man line.
Asked what he’ll do if he lands the starting spot at nose tackle, Raji said, “What can I do? Just cause havoc.”
Last year, a holdout, an ankle injury, and a rotation between end and nose tackle limited his development. This year, Raji apparently will be playing nose tackle only.
“Sky’s the limit for me, I believe,” Raji said, per the Green Bay Press-Gazette. “When I come in and wreak
havoc, it will change a lot. It makes the lives of Nick [Barnett] and [Brandon Chillar] and A.J. [Hawk] a lot easier. That’s what the 3-4 is
designed to do, get our linebackers running free and making plays. And when the opportunity presents itself,
I’ll make the plays myself.”
It’s a healthy attitude, but opportunities to “make plays” for defensive lineman in the 3-4 come only rarely. The main job, as Raji realizes, consists of clogging up the line and occupying blockers so that the linebackers can get to the ball.
But since Raji has yet to cash in with a $100 million contract, he has no choice but to do the dirty work — and to wait for the occasional opportunity to fall on a running back or the quarterback.