Each year, every NFL team gets to invite 30 players to their team facilities for workouts, interviews, and medical examinations in advance of the NFL Draft. However, teams are also allowed to bring in an unlimited number of “local prospects,” players who either played college football at nearby universities or who claim their hometowns as being nearby the team facilities.
For the Green Bay Packers, the most notable school whose prospects qualify as local players is the one in-state FBS program: the Wisconsin Badgers. This week, several draft-eligible Badgers will be making the short drive to the Northeast to Lambeau Field to meet with the team, reports ESPN’s Rob Demovsky.
Demovsky has confirmed the names of three Wisconsin players who will be in attendance in the coming days: fullback Alec Ingold, linebacker Ryan Connelly, and edge rusher Andrew Van Ginkel. Other Badgers may be attending as well, but have not yet been confirmed. The team also has three offensive linemen likely to be drafted (David Edwards, Michael Dieter, and Beau Benzschawel) and another linebacker (T.J. Edwards), along with a few additional players who could hear their names come off the board in the late rounds (safety D’Cota Dixon and nose tackle Olive Sagapolu).
Ingold was a short-yardage and goal-line stud for the Badgers for four years, starting at tailback before moving to fullback and bulking up. In the last few seasons, he developed into an excellent lead-blocker and a good receiver out of the backfield, and he scored a total of 21 touchdowns over his college career.
Connelly took over as a starter in 2016, playing a significant role in Wisconsin’s season-opening win over LSU at Lambeau Field. In his final two seasons, he put up almost identical stat lines, with 88 and 89 total tackles, 11 and 10 tackles for loss, and three sacks plus a forced fumble in each campaign. Connelly ran the 40-yard dash in 4.66 seconds at the 2019 Combine.
A junior college transfer from Iowa Western Community College, Van Ginkel played two seasons in Madison, recording 6.5 sacks in 2017 and 5.5 last year. He also posted a pair of forced fumbles in each season and picked off a pair of passes as a junior, with those two big plays coming in the Big Ten Championship Game and the Orange Bowl.
UPDATE: Three more Badgers are confirmed as visitors this week. The Green Bay Press-Gazette’s Olivia Reiner reports that offensive tackle David Edwards, inside linebacker T.J. Edwards, and safety D’Cota Dixon are also attending this week’s workouts, along with players from Northern Illinois and Northwestern.