The start of another week yields another new mock draft from SB Nation's Dan Kadar, and this week he has strayed from his recent predictions for the Packers at the 30th pick. Instead of an inside linebacker being the selection, as it has for the past several weeks, Kadar is looking to the back half of the defense instead.
This week, he projects the Packers to draft cornerback Jalen Collins from LSU.
In light of Tramon Williams' and Davon House's departures in free agency, there is no question that cornerback is a critical need for the Packers in the early parts of the draft next month. In fact, that is a factor which Dan mentioned during publication of the article on Monday morning:
As of this writing, Packers cornerback Tramon Williams is still an available free agent. If he’s lost, Green Bay will have to find a new starter at the position. Collins is big cornerback possessing an aggressive and confident streak and nice set of overall tools.
Of course, Williams signed with the Browns later that day, helping to justify this pick.
Collins brings an intriguing blend of size and speed to the position. He measured in at the NFL Scouting Combine at 6 feet, 1-1/2 inch, and 204 pounds. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.48 seconds and recorded a vertical jump of 36 inches. He will participate in LSU's Pro Day on March 27th.
In a heavy rotation in the Tigers' secondary, Collins started ten games over his three years, recording three interceptions, 19 passes defended, 90 total tackles, and 3.0 tackles for loss.
Collins would bring a big, physical presence to the cornerback position in Green Bay, something which is missing after House left for Jacksonville. With Sam Shields, Casey Hayward, and company leading the way, Collins might be able to ease into the lineup early on in his rookie season and take over a starting position by midway through the year, much in the same manner that Ha Ha Clinton-Dix did at safety in 2014.