With Acme Packing Company on the clock with the 26th pick in the SB Nation NFL Blogger Mock Draft, you had the opportunity to weigh in on who you thought we should select for the Green Bay Packers. While we appreciate your feedback, we actually had to submit our pick last week (SURPRISE!), and so were unable to take your opinions from the last thread into consideration.
The card has been submitted, and with the 26th pick, Acme Packing Company has selected tight end Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame.
With Johnathan Hankins off the board, we are solid on Eifert, who is easily the best tight end in this year's draft class. Ted Thompson preaches taking the best player available without reaching for a particular position. While we think the Packers need some substantial help at running back and at defensive line, picking Eifert seems natural based on the best player strategy, but his addition would make sense.
For the immediate future, Eifert's presence would give the Packers a dual tight end package that would be among the better combinations in the league. Teams consistently ran Cover 2 defenses against the Packers in 2012 to take away the big passing plays, and what better way to break those schemes than with two big targets who can make plays down the seams? In the run game, he's almost certainly already a better blocker than Finley, which could mean he'd be used in-line to let Finley split out wide more often as a receiver.
Looking beyond the 2013 season, the tight end position is a bit of a question mark as Jermichael Finley is currently in a contract year. If he manages to perform like an All-Pro, he'll price himself out of Green Bay; if he doesn't, I expect he won't be brought back even at a lower salary. That would leave a big hole in the passing game, with a handful of as-yet unproven players to fill it. Eifert would bring another talented receiving weapon to the Packers' passing game and giving him a season to develop before making him the go-to tight end in the offense would certainly be beneficial.
All in all, selecting Eifert makes sense to us from all sides. An attempt to trade down is certainly not out of the question, but without any highly-ranked defensive linemen dropping to 26 we think Eifert provides very good value at a position that could use help both immediately and into the future.