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College stats for each of the Packers’ 2021 Draft picks

Among non-offensive linemen, the Packers had a trend in 2021: their draft picks played early and often in college.

Florida vs Georgia Photo by Matt Stamey/Collegiate Images/Getty Images

The Green Bay Packers tend to select younger prospects in the NFL Draft; it is unsurprising for the team to stick to players under 22 years of age, particularly on the first or second days of the draft.

With that youth often comes some inexperience, but most of Green Bay’s early picks also play early on in their college careers. That was indeed the case with this year’s crop of players, most of whom played in their first seasons on campus as true freshmen. Here’s a look at the college statistics for each of the Packers’ 2021 draft picks throughout their college careers. Note in particular how early each player entered the starting lineup.

Note: offensive linemen do not have traditional statistics, so draft picks Josh Myers (round two), Royce Newman (round four) and Cole Van Lanen (round 6) are not included in the detailed breakdown below. However, all redshirted as true freshmen and became full-time starters during the 2019 season.

All stats except games/starts courtesy of Sports-Reference.com; games/starts provided by college team websites.


Round 1: Eric Stokes, CB, Georgia

Stokes College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF
Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF
2018 Fr Georgia 13 (3) 16 4 20 1.0 0.0 0 0 9 0
2019 Soph Georgia 14 (13) 30 8 38 1.0 1.0 0 0 9 1
2020 Jr Georgia 9 (9) 14 6 20 0.0 0.0 4 2 4 0

Although Stokes took over a starting job as a sophomore in 2019, he was already getting his hands on footballs as the Bulldogs’ third cornerback during his freshman year. He finally started hauling in some picks as a junior last fall, however, taking two back for touchdowns. Still, teams largely avoided throwing at him in 2020.

Round 3: Amari Rodgers, WR, Clemson

Rodgers College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Rec Rec Yd YPR TD Rush Att Rush Yd YPA Rush TD PR Att PR Yds PR Avg PR TD
Year Class College Games (Starts) Rec Rec Yd YPR TD Rush Att Rush Yd YPA Rush TD PR Att PR Yds PR Avg PR TD
2017 Fr Clemson 14 (0) 19 123 6.5 0 3 -9 -3 0 2 15 7.5 0
2018 Soph Clemson 15 (15) 55 575 10.5 4 1 5 5 0 39 299 7.7 1
2019 Jr Clemson 14 (10) 30 426 14.2 4 2 50 25 1 18 151 8.4 0
2020 Sr Clemson 12 (12) 77 1020 13.2 7 0 0 0 0 9 64 7.1 0

Rodgers was a bit player in Clemson’s offense as a true freshman in 2017, when Kelly Bryant was playing quarterback, but grew into a starter by his second year, which coincided with Trevor Lawrence’s arrival. Rodgers tore his ACL in the spring of 2019 following his sophomore breakout season, but was back on the field for a full season that fall, though he was limited somewhat early on. Still, he showed explosiveness as a receiver, posting his best yards per reception average of his college career.

A breakout season in 2020 saw Rodgers lead the Tigers in receptions and receiving yardage, working opposite a more downfield threat in Cornell Powell.

Round 5: T.J. Slaton, DT, Florida

Slaton College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF FR
Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF FR
2017 Fr Florida 11 (0) 5 6 11 1.5 0.0 0 0 0 0 1
2018 Soph Florida 10 (2) 4 17 21 1.5 0.0 1 0 0 0 1
2019 Jr Florida 12 (0) 12 17 29 3.5 2.0 0 0 1 0 0
2020 Sr Florida 12 (12) 14 24 38 3.5 1.5 0 0 0 0 0

A guard recruit coming out of high school, Florida offered Slaton a chance to play on the defensive line. He played throughout his college career starting as a true freshman, but finally earned a starting job in 2020 as a senior. The stats back up Slaton’s reputation in college as a player capable of flash plays but who has yet to find consistency as a penetrating defensive tackle.

Round 5: Shemar Jean-Charles, CB, Appalachian State

Jean-Charles College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF
Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF
2016 Fr (redshirted) App. State 0 (0)
2017 Fr-RS App. State 13 (0) 5 5 10 0.0 0.0 0 0 2 0
2018 So-RS App. State 11 (0) 3 2 5 0.0 0.0 0 0 3 0
2019 Jr-RS App. State 14 (13) 30 15 45 0.0 0.0 1 0 9 1
2020 Sr-RS App. State 12 (12) 22 13 35 1.0 0.0 1 0 16 0

Jean-Charles is the only non-offensive lineman among the Packers’ 2021 draft class to have redshirted as a freshman. While this is an interesting trend, it makes sense as the Packers tend to skew towards younger prospects.

Although he did not take on a starting role until his fourth year on campus, Jean-Charles clearly put that time to good use in the classroom, as his 27 combined pass defenses over his two years as a starter were among the most in the FBS.

Round 6: Isaiah McDuffie, LB, Boston College

McDuffie College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF FR
Year Class College Games (Starts) Solo Tkl Ast. Tkl Total Tkl TFL Sacks INT TD PBU FF FR
2017 Fr Boston College 13 (0) 1 7 8 0.0 0.0 0 0 1 0 0
2018 So Boston College 12 (6) 48 37 85 5.5 3.5 0 0 2 0 0
2019 Jr (medical redshirt) Boston College 4 (3) 24 6 30 3.5 2.0 0 0 0 0 0
2020 Jr-RS Boston College 11 (11) 54 53 107 6.5 3.0 1 0 0 0 1

For a college linebacker whose skills are heavily based on his speed and athleticism, McDuffie really made little impact in the passing game overall. Like Stokes and Rodgers, he became a starter during his second year in college, and he finished second on the team in tackles while primarily playing on the strong side. He recorded double-digit tackles in three games as a sophomore and three more as a junior, and he got a medical redshirt in 2019 by playing in just four games, all late in the season.

McDuffie’s senior year saw him post ten or more total tackles seven times, including in four straight games early in the season. He also got his first and only interception in the season opener at Duke.

Round 7: Kylin Hill, RB, Mississippi State

Hill College Stats

Year Class College Games (Starts) Rush Att Rush Yds YPA Rush TD Rec Rec Yds YPR Rec TD
Year Class College Games (Starts) Rush Att Rush Yds YPA Rush TD Rec Rec Yds YPR Rec TD
2017 Fr Mississippi State 13 (0) 78 393 5.0 2 4 38 9.5 0
2018 So Mississippi State 11 (11) 117 734 6.3 4 22 176 8.0 4
2019 Jr Mississippi State 13 (13) 242 1350 5.6 10 18 180 10.0 1
2020 Sr Mississippi State 3 (3) 15 58 3.9 0 23 237 10.3 1

The most bizarre stat line of any of the Packers’ picks comes from Hill, and it comes thanks in large part to the arrival of Mike Leach as the Bulldogs’ head coach in 2020. Under head coach Joe Moorhead in 2018-19, Hill was a heavily-used, high-efficiency runner who made the occasional contribution as a receiver. But with Leach taking over, the run game was effectively an afterthought and he eclipsed full seasons’ worth of receiving production in just three contests before opting out of the remainder of the season.

Those splits suggest that Hill will be a player who can contribute on all three downs, and if he makes the roster as the RB3, he likely will be an option to spell either Aaron Jones or AJ Dillon in just about any situation.


Four of the Packers’ nine draft picks in 2021 were contributors as true freshmen and starters by their second years on campus — that group consists of Stokes, Rodgers, McDuffie, and Hill. Meanwhile, all three of the Packers’ offensive line picks redshirted, with only Jean-Charles joining them among picks at other positions. Finally, only Slaton started for just a single season, with every other player being in the starting lineup for at least two years.

With the 2020 college football season being a mess due to COVID-19, it is probably no surprise that the Packers seemed to put a premium on players who had substantial starting experience prior to this past year.