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2017 NFL Draft: Best Players Available when Packers lead off Day 3

There are plenty of prospects still out there for the Packers to target with the first pick of day three.

NCAA Football: Cotton Bowl-Wisconsin vs Western Michigan Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers ended day one of the 2017 NFL Draft on the clock, having the first pick on day two of the draft. They do the same on Friday night, as they have the first pick in round four as a result of their trade with the Cleveland Browns on Thursday.

With a corner, a safety, and a defensive lineman all added, the Packers still have a perceived need at edge rusher, as well as needs on offense at running back, guard, and receiver. Here are some of the best players available at the end of the second day of the draft and how they might fit in Green Bay.


EDGE Vince Biegel, Wisconsin: Biegel checks all the athletic boxes for the Packers, and you can bet that the Wisconsin native would love nothing more than to stay in his home state. The top of round four would be solid value for him.

EDGE Carl Lawson, Auburn: Lawson isn’t the athlete that Biegel is, but he had a solid career for the Tigers while fighting through a torn ACL and a hip injury. As a senior, he had 24 quarterback hits and nine sacks.

EDGE Carroll Phillips, Illinois: Another good athlete, Phillips blew up in his one year as a starter. He had nine sacks and 20 tackles for loss, and tested well, with a 4.4 40 and 7.06 3-cone. Bonus: his nickname is “Wild Man.”

ILB Ben Gedeon, Michigan: Could the Packers take two Wolverine linebackers in three years? Matching Gedeon with Jake Ryan could provide the Packers with the thumpers on the inside on base downs, and the pick of Josh Jones could make Morgan Burnett into a full-time nickel and dime linebacker.

DT Caleb Brantley, Florida: One of the most talented players in a thin defensive line class, Brantley faces allegations that he punched a woman in a bar a few weeks ago. The Packers were named as one of the teams that has “done the most research” on Brantley since the incident.


RB Samaje Perine, Oklahoma: He’s not a burner by any means, but Perine is in that “big back” mold that the Packers have liked in the past. At 5’11” and 233, he reminds you a bit of Eddie Lacy coming out of ALabama, and he was over 1,000 rushing yards in each of his three years of college football.

RB Brian Hill, Wyoming: Hill is more of a James Starks-type, at 6’1” and 219. He also tested better, with a 4.54 40 and 7.03 cone time. Hill was one of the most productive backs in college football last year with over 1,800 rushing yards.

WR Chad Hansen, California: If the Packers want to add some size and speed at receiver, they could look to the Golden Bears again. Hansen ran a limited route tree at Cal and had a somewhat disappointing 40 at the Combine, but he’s got good agility numbers and averaged 125 yards per game as a senior.

WR Josh Malone, Tennessee: Malone was a top 10 recruit out of high school and gradually worked his way up to the top of the depth chart in three years. Last season he was a deadly deep threat, catching 50 passes for 972 yards (19.4 per catch) and 11 touchdowns. He’s got great length (6’’2-3/4” and 208 pounds) and speed (4.40 40 at the Combine).

TE George Kittle, Iowa: Known as one of the better blockers at the position in the draft, Kittle exploded at the Combine with absurd numbers: a 4.52 40, 35” vert, and 11’ broad jump.

TE Bucky Hodges, Virginia Tech: On the other side of the equation is Hodges, who is more receiver than tight end at this point. He also has great explosion and speed, though, and has a massive frame at 6’6” and 257 pounds. He could learn from Martellus Bennett and Lance Kendricks for a year or two before becoming a serious force in a few years.

OL Julie’n Davenport, Bucknell: Ted Thompson loves his college blind side tackles, and Davenport was a four-year starter at left tackle. He’s a massive man at 6’7” and 318 and he has 36.5” arms.

OL Nico Siragusa, San Diego State: If Ted breaks his typical “tackle” mold for a guard, Siragusa could be the guy. He was a three-year starter who had the best vertical of any lineman at the Combine (32”).