It’s all about athleticism for the Green Bay Packers. Picking with the 12th overall selection, the Packers have chosen defensive lineman Rashan Gary from Michigan.
Gary is very much a project, as his production for the Wolverines did not live up to his exceptional athleticism. The position he will play in Green Bay will be interesting to see, as he played as a defensive end and interior pass rusher at Michigan. With a 6-foot-4, 277-pound build, he projects better there than as a true edge rusher.
At that size, however, Gary posted a ridiculous Combine workout in Indianapolis. He recorded a 4.58-second 40-yard dash, a 38-inch vertical, and a 10-foot broad jump, all exceptional numbers. However, a shoulder injury was a medical concern for some teams coming into the draft and it may still require surgery this year.
As mentioned earlier, Gary’s production hardly jumps off the stat sheet. In three years at Michigan, he recorded just 9.5 sacks and 23 tackles for loss, numbers that have been equaled by some college edge rushers in a single season. This suggests that Gary will be worked in gradually, developing him behind the Packers’ current group of players at whatever position they decide to play him.
This is a high-risk, high-reward pick for the Packers. Perhaps because the team has a second first-round pick, they felt that it was worth that risk at 12.