We’re back. It’s officially #DraftSZN, and we’re out here prospering. In anticipation of the NFL Scouting Combine, it’s time to play everyone’s favorite game:
Let’s Pick the Players We Want to Play On Our Favorite Team Before Free Agents Are Signed and Before the Players Have Worked Out(!)
Before we get started, a few house-keeping notes to consider:
- We don’t know who Brian Gutekunst will pick
- I don’t care if you disagree with my hypothetical scenario
- The Packers need help in a lot of positions
- We all like the Packers!
Also I’d like to thank Fanspeak.com for their very nice website and draft simulator. Check them out if you’re not familiar. For this draft it’s a 7 round draft on the Difficult setting with Matt Miller’s Big Board.
Round 1 Pick 14 - Harold Landry, EDGE, Boston College
With Josh Jackson and Roquan Smith gone, Landry was the decision. Though the pass rush is in need of some serious depth, Landry won’t start in base packages immediately, but he’ll provide some much needed #juice in the pressure department and will strike more fear into opposing tackles than Kyler Fackrell.
Round 2 Pick 45 - Isaiah Wynn, OG, Georgia
While I was shocked to see Wynn still available half-way through the second round, Forrest Lamp was a no doubt first round pick last year who ended up falling into the second, and Wynn would provide stellar value and a new starting right guard on Day 1. Wynn also fits the profile that Green Bay has looked for in the past (i.e. he has played left tackle), though whether that will ring true with Gutekunst, we’ll all have to find out. This would be a huge boost to an already solid offensive line.
Round 3 Pick 76 - Mark Andrews, TE, Oklahoma
I know, this isn’t super realistic, at least as of right now. Andrews has been mocked in almost only the first and second rounds so far, but it wouldn’t surprise me a whole lot if these tight ends that can’t block anybody are valued less by the league than by the twitter dot com. Andrews would be an excellent value here, as Aaron Rodgers would get a target to threaten the seams and eventually replace... *peers at the roster* ...Lance Kendricks, as the starter once his blocking improves. Andrews was a playmaker for the Sooners and would be a welcome addition to the Packer offense.
Round 3 Pick 109 - Terrell Edmunds, S, Virginia Tech
While Terrell’s younger brother Tremaine is making all of the headlines, and with good reason, Terrell isn’t a bad player himself. He played free safety for the Hokies but is a vicious hitter and would provide some depth for a safety room comprised of Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, possibly Morgan Burnett, Josh Jones, and undrafted players Kentrell Brice and Marwin Evans. Edmunds’ ability to play two deep will be valuable as Jones is most effectively utilized as a Swiss Army Knife type weapon to be employed around the line of scrimmage in a variety of spots.
Round 4 Pick 116 - Marquis Haynes, EDGE/LB, Ole Miss
I tweeted about Marquis Haynes recently, and made a remark along the lines of: “A team can take Marquis Haynes in the 4th round and get the same thing as a team will get from Ogbonnia Okoronkwo in the 2nd round” and buddy...here we are. Haynes will likely play a Sam linebacker spot in more base sets, but his most effective role will likely be as a blitzer and pass rusher. Haynes was a standout for Ole Miss over the past few seasons, and while he lacks a true “position”, as my pal Emory Hunt said at the Senior Bowl when asked where you play Haynes: “On defense.” He’s a playmaker, get him on the field and let him play.
Round 5 Pick 152 - Ian Thomas, TE, Indiana
“But Owen, we already took a tight end in this mock draft, I want receivers!” I know, I know. But here’s the thing: the Packers tight end room is: Lance Kendricks and Richard Rodgers, and that’s it. (Editor’s note: Rodgers is a free agent, too, so he’s no lock to return either.) Neither of these two are long term options, so the Packers investing two picks into receiving tight ends makes a bit of sense! Thomas is an impressive athlete who played well down in Mobile. He’s more of a “Move tight end” than Andrews, but Thomas has strong hands and would be nice value here in the 5th round.
Round 5 Pick 173 - Andrew Brown, DL, Virginia
It really depends on who you talk to about Andrew Brown as to what the consensus on him is. Some people have him as a potential first round pick. Brown was a 5* recruit coming out of high school, but was played a bit out of position by Virginia in their 3-4 scheme as a two-gapping defensive end. He would play a 3 technique for the Packers, but could also play 5 technique in a pinch if Pettine wanted a heavier end for run defense. I think Brown has huge potential, but he’ll have to go to the right environment and coach.
Round 5 Pick 175 - Holton Hill, CB, Texas
With their 3rd fifth round pick, the Packers can take a risk on a defensive back who has Day 1 athleticism and talent, but some off field flags push him down into mid Day Three. It’s more depth to a secondary that I don’t believe is lacking talent, just more so depth. Damarious Randall, Kevin King, Clinton-Dix, and Jones are all starting level NFL players, but they need help. Hill provides some top level traits.
Round 5 Pick 177 - Dorian O’Daniel, LB, Clemson
The Green Bay Packers have gotten way more out of undrafted Joe Thomas than anyone could have imagined, and the Packers are able to land a similar style player in O’Daniel, who is likely a special team demon and a Nickel/Dime linebacker. He’s in the 210 pound range, but O’Daniel is always around the football and was a playmaker who stood out among a defense littered with future NFL talent at Clemson. He’ll stick somewhere.
Round 6 Pick 189 - Lowell Lotuleilei, DL, Utah
More depth for a defensive line who will be rotating a lot of bodies throughout games. Lotuleilei is the younger brother of Star, and is a nose tackle at the next level. He never quite took the next step many anticipated a few years ago, but he’s a solid run defender all day long. Think of him as a lesser LeTroy Guion.
Round 7 Pick 232 - J.T. Barrett, QB, Ohio State
I’ve been on this train for a while, and fans won’t be super happy about it, but I wouldn’t be shocked in the slightest if the holder of like every record at Ohio State is selected. Now, it’s in the 7th round, and Barrett will likely never be a starter in the NFL, but his intangibles, ability to stay calm under pressure, and his football IQ will make him a viable backup after a year or two of holding the clipboard and learning. His athletic ability, while it isn’t overwhelming, is what the Packers look for to extend plays and run read option twice a game. Barrett makes a ton of sense.
Round 7 Pick 239 - Brandon Facyson, CB, Virginia Tech
Brandon Facyson is more length and depth for a secondary still in need of it. Quinten Rollins has to be playing for his job this upcoming season. Facyson had a ton of picks as a freshman and never quite matched that, but he’s got a lot of tools teams will look for on Day 3. He’ll need to add some bulk, but Facyson is an NFL level corner, and would be an awesome get this late.
So, in review, I didn’t get the offense a ton of help, but frankly, I don’t mind that. A starting guard and two pass catching threats at tight end and a possible backup quarterback will do in this class. There’s enough there, with a free agent addition or two, to make a run. The defense however is now stocked with plenty of depth and playmakers. Landry and Haynes rushing the passer, Andrew Brown and Lotulelei at defensive tackle, O’Daniel at linebacker and Facyson, Hill, and Edmunds all in the secondary. These compensatory picks will be huge for adding solid depth to the roster, and this class is full of defensive talent.