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2015 Packer Draft Series: Ted Thompson’s Round 2 Success

Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb

Round 1 in the NFL Draft is like the part of the iceberg above the water. It gets all the attention, but it is a small part of the whole.

In our Round 1 draft analysis, I explored whether Ted Thompson deserves a poor reputation in Round 1. Now, I will investigate whether he deserves his great reputation for Round 2.

A recent study of the NFL draft over a 10 year span concluded that Round 2 of the draft normally yields a 50/50 success to bust rate. I took a close look at the last 8 years of the draft and found that Round 2 has pretty consistently resulted in a 18-20% chance of drafting a Pro Bowl player.

With that in mind as a measuring stick, here are all the Round 2 picks by Ted Thompson.

Year Player # Overall Bust Pro Bowl
2014 Davante Adams 53
2013 Eddie Lacy 61 X
2012 Jerel Worthy 51 X
2012 Casey Hayward 62
2011 Randall Cobb 64 X
2010 Mike Neal 56
2008 Jordy Nelson 36 X
2008 Brian Brohm 56 X
2008 Patrick Lee 60 X
2007 Brandon Jackson 63 X
2006 Darren Colledge 47
2006 Greg Jennings 52 X
2005 Nick Collins 51 X
2005 Terrence Murphy 58 X
36% 36%

As shown above, in 14 overall picks, Thompson has picked 5 busts and 5 Pro Bowl players. With 36% in both categories, Thompson’s bust rate and Pro Bowl rate are significantly better than the NFL average, which again are 50%/20%.

Plus, Thompson’s numbers are slightly weighed down by picks in years where he picked more than once. In fact, 4 of his 5 busts were in years where Thompson had multiple picks in Round 2. And that one outlier bust, Brandon Jackson, could be argued to not have been a bust at all. Jackson was actually a pretty useful player for the Packers and helped them win a Super Bowl in 2010. However, the Round 2 expectation is for a player to become either a starter or a solid back up eventually, and by that standard, Jackson was a bust.

If you just go by the measure of drafting a quality player in Round 2, regardless of number of picks, then Thompson’s success rate is 8 of 9, or 88%. With again Jackson’s year of 2007 being the only draft where Thompson did not get at least one quality player out of Round 2.

Of course, as it always is, the story is developing since there is still time for Davante Adams, Casey Hayward or Mike Neal to either bust or become Pro Bowl players. Obviously Thompson has had more success drafting offense in Round 2. He has a 25% bust rate on offensive players (2 of 8) and a 50% bust rate on defensive players (3 of 6).

As we saw in the first round, the Packers have shown their dedication to the draft and develop philosophy in Round 2. Every draft pick that was not a bust has been extended beyond their rookie contract except for Darren Colledge.

To date, Ted Thompson has drafted 3 players in the first round who have made the Pro Bowl and 5 players in the 2nd round who have. That suggests Friday is just as big a draft day as Thursday is. And by the way, Thompson has only picked one player after the first two rounds who then made the Pro Bowl, and that is Josh Sitton picked in Round 4 in 2008. Mike Daniels, Morgan Burnett, Corey Linsley and David Bakhtiari all have decent shots to change that though.



Shawn Neuser attended UWGB and lives and works in Green Bay. He enjoys long walks on the beach and being intimate with game film.



  1. KillaCam April 19, 2015

    You can’t really consider Terrance Murphy a bust can you? He was an ascending player who had his career ended by a tragic and unfortunate neck injury

    1. The Money Mike April 20, 2015

      That last sentence could apply to about 5 Packers lol

      1. KillaCam April 20, 2015

        sadly, yes you can. Finley, Collins, Franklin, Murphy…

        1. The Money Mike April 20, 2015

          Sharpe, Collins…sickening

  2. Savage57 April 20, 2015

    When you look at what Neal, Hayward, and Adams might do in the next couple years, this is definitely trending up.

    Might even make people be able to forgive the Brohm and Worthy picks.

    1. The Money Mike April 20, 2015

      Brohm was best (everyone thought) Qb available in the event of a meltdown and worthy was a desperate reach

      1. Shawn Neuser April 20, 2015

        I remember reading about it in SI. Brian Brohm had one of the greatest Pro Days that anyone remembered. He was like 74 of 74 on passing without the ball ever touching the ground. His NFL flop surprised a lot of people. Worthy was a better athlete than Mike Daniels, just didn’t have his ferocity or drive, and got injured. I thought both were good picks when they were made.

  3. Fritz April 23, 2015

    your article charts ten years of TT 2nd round picks. if continuous improvement means anything, than your stats from the most recent five years of those ten years are way above and beyond any other GM second round picks for the same period!

    hats off to TT– currently the best GM in FB– picking for the best team in FB. now if he could have picked coaching talent up to his level of draft picks, the best team in FB would have also had the best pct. of SB appearances in FB as well.