2011 NFL Draft Grades: The Green Bay Packers

Unfortunately for those looking for a draft grade, I'm not a fan of assigning a letter grade to the Green Bay Packers draft. I have my preference for what I look for each year, but there's more than one way to assemble an NFL roster. Overall, this looked like a typical GM Ted Thompson draft. He drafted a lot of players, at a lot of different positions, and he did a good job targeting the positions at which they needed more depth. The big question is whether any of them will work out, which is impossible to determine, but luckily the Packers have a pretty good track record in that regard.

The Packers surprised me a little by making a bunch of late round trades to move up or down, but I don't think it added much value. A lot has been written about the Packers top draft choices already, so I just want to take a quick look at why the Packers drafted who they did in rounds 4-7.

Round 4, No. 131, New Mexico St. DB Davon House. He's the type of bigger, bump-and-run, cornerback I would expect the Packers to draft. Depth wasn't a major issue in 2010, but it had been in prior seasons. Not a position they really needed someone, but he can push Brandon Underwood and Pat Lee to fight for their roster spots.

Round 5, No. 141, Arkansas TE D.J. Williams.

Round 7, No. 218, North Carolina TE Ryan Taylor. They needed at least one tight end after releasing TE Donald Lee, and they got two. They might keep both of them because FB Korey Hall and FB John Kuhn are both free agents, and tight ends are somewhat interchangeable for the Packers. 

Round 6, No. 179, Utah OL Caleb Schlauderaff. With guards Daryn Colledge and Jason Spitz potential free agents, they could use some depth at the position.

Round 6, No. 186, Appalachian State, LB D.J. Smith. If the Packers trade or release LB Nick Barnett, they'll need more depth at linebacker. But if Smith is really only 5-11, then I don't see how he sticks in the NFL. 

Round 6, No. 197, Arizona DE Ricky Elmore. Are they going to convert him to an outside linebacker? I could see them going either way, and we'll see what they do in rookie camp (if the lockout is lifted again). 

Round 7, No. 223, Arizona State DT Lawrence Guy. Not quite Mr. Irrelevant, but pretty close. The Packers have done a good job at finding defensive lineman in late rounds, and they needed depth on the defensive line.

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