With the NFL Draft less than a week away, every member of Green Bay Packers Nation is trying to predict who GM Ted Thompson will take at No. 30 overall.
The Packers are in solid shape heading into next season, especially on offense. But, ostensibly, Thompson isn’t set on going defense in round one.
“You factor everything in,” he said in a recent pre-draft press conference. “But that doesn’t carry as much weight as it might with other organizations because they go about weighting those things differently than we do.
“There’s a certain amount of weighing in terms of need, but I am adamant that that’s not the way to draft. The way to draft is to take the best player.”
It’s the latter half of that statement that is intriguing and insightful. It’s also good news for fans knowing the team won’t overreach or, even worse, pick a need over what’s available.
Based on need, draft prognosticators have been putting the Packers on an inside linebacker or defensive back.
Inside linebackers Eric Kendricks (UCLA) and Stephone Anthony (Clemson) are getting plenty of attention as possible Green Bay first-rounders. Both players are solid choices, but some view them as second-round talents and the odds that Thompson sees one or the other as the best player available at No. 30 aren’t great.
If Kendricks and Anthony aren’t the best available, who will be?
It’s entirely possible that the answer to that question will be 6’1”, 215-pound Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon, who can both gain yards after contact and be a legitimate home-run threat.
Yes, Eddie Lacy is still young and healthy, but imagine what adding Gordon into the mix could do for the Packers offense.
In addition to providing a phenomenal one-two punch with Lacy that would take pressure off the passing game, Gordon would act as an insurance policy that most teams can’t afford, but the Packers can.
Sure, the running back position isn’t as valued as it once was – which is the main reason why Gordon may still be available late in the first round – but that could mean a steal for the Pack at No. 30.
For those of you who don’t buy that Green Bay might use its first pick on the offensive side of the ball, I’ll leave you with some last, potentially prophetic words from Thompson.
“What you think you’re strong at, you’re not necessarily strong at … If you take good, solid players that you know can contribute, albeit at a position that’s maybe a little bit heavier, as long as you’re taking good, solid players you’re getting some value there.
“If you reach and take something that’s not quite as good, then you may not be getting the same value. I know you don’t believe that, but it’s true. That’s what we do.”
I might be a nutcase, but if we get just a little bit better with the draft and URFA types or TT forbid acquiring a veteran starter, I honestly feel like this team can run the table.
That is IF Matthews assumes his role as ILB and decides he can win another DPOY award doing it.
This team has it all and hopefully now they’ll have the attitude to go with it.
“Well who’s going to beat me?”
The lions proved that the “best avail player” philosophy isn’t the end all be all. Didn’t they take 3 first round receivers in 3 consecutive drafts, a few years back? Granted…it’s the lions…but still.
there is a very good video interview of TT by Larry McCarren on Packers.com. Worth the 5 minutes to watch. I would love to have Melvin Gordon and Eddie Lacy in the backfield together. Holy Guacamole! But if the right guy isn’t there when we pick, I think Ted is trading down. There are a good many players projected to go at 30 who are second round prospects, so……just saying. We could do worse than 2 second rounders.
Gordon isn’t good enough in the passing game. Adding Gordon over Starks would make a minimal difference. If we draft offense I’d like to see us pick up a TE
The real question is what grade TT and the Packers give each player. I would not put it past TT to select an offensive player in the first if the grade was right and that may be Gordon.
TT makes those or similar statements every year. TT wants teams to think he may take any player with a better grade. It could help in a team trading up with the Pack and giving more to the Pack to get their need guy. It may be a good draft to trade down slightly and still get the guy you want at the value TT projects for that guy. This may really happen if the three top corners in TT’s book are gone at pick 30.
Even with no changes, the Packers will have a fine offense. What the Packers need is defense: DT, ILB, CB. Please spend most of the picks on these positions please.
Defense, defense, defense. I don’t want to be an offense-only team.
Gordon will be gone at 30, I can see TT trading out if the 1st rather than reaching on an ILB.
I wonder if he may look at the TE area – but to me, it may be in the nose tackle spot.
sitting so low in the first round, who would have such a big need that they would trade for that position?? Could happen i suppose..
Someone doesn’t understand BAP and associated value boards…
normally ILBs not taken in the 1st Round; i would have thought Jalen Collins, CB, LSU until news came out that he failed drug tests; so maybe Byron Jones or Eric Rowe at CB or a DT like Eddie Goldman or Jordan Phillips; BJ will be gone next year +++ Letroy will be suspended for first 4-6 games
Taking a running back in the first round is ridiculous, unless you have a really strong need of that. We don’t – lacy and starks do just fine as a 1-2 punch, and presumably the packers will give lacy a lighter load to start the season. But hey what do I know about drafting? About as much as every other clown who presents a mock draft. TT doesnt always hit on his first rounders, but we usually get some good quality players in later rounds, so I trust TT knows what he’s doing.
As much as I love Melvin Gordon, we need to give Lacy the rock as much as possible. He gets better as the game goes on. Although Gordon would be a great change of pace, Starks knows the offense and has a habit of coming up huge in big games.