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Packers to Get a Boatload of Compensatory Draft Picks in 2018

A day ago we discussed how the NFL’s compensatory draft pick program works, and how devoted general manager Ted Thompson is to procuring such picks. Today we’ll look at just how well the Green Bay Packers have done with Ted’s fondest strategy.

First though, it needs to be pointed out that this NFL program, begun in 1994, is an effort to balance things out when a team loses a bunch of its players to other teams. It’s all about maintaining parity. In order to get good compensatory picks, a team has to lose good players during the previous free agency period.

Thompson is in the midst of his 13th free agent signing period. In 2005, inheriting the work of Mike Sherman from 2004, Ted had no compensatory draft picks. In 2006, he got an extra fifth and seventh round pick. In 2007, he got just one seventh round pick. In 2008, he got an extra fourth round pick.

In 2009 he got a fifth and sixth round compensatory pick. He got no compensatory picks in 2010. In 2011 he got two extra sixth rounders, and one extra seventh round pick. In 2012, he got two fourth and two seventh rounders.

In 2013, he got one fifth round pick. In 2014, third and fifth round picks. In 2015, two sixth round picks; and in 2016, two fourth round picks.

Given that third and fourth round picks are much more valuable than lower-round picks, Ted’s best years in mining the compensatory gold vein were in 2012 and 2016, with two fourth rounders each year. The only time Thompson has netted a third-round compensatory pick was in 2014 – it was due to losing wide receiver Greg Jennings in free agency.

In 2016, those two fourth round picks came courtesy of the loss of cornerbacks’ Tramon Williams and Davon House.

In 2017, the Packers will get a fifth round compensatory pick due to the loss of Casey Hayward. If you’ll recall, the primary factor in determining the degree of the loss is salary and Hayward only got $5.1 million per year from the Chargers. Had postseason honors not been a secondary factor, Hayward’s loss might have resulted in a third round choice, as he received All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors.

Some of the players who Thompson has obtained with his compensatory drafts picks are: Josh Sitton (2008), Davon House (2011), Mike Daniels (2012), Richard Rodgers (2014), and Blake Martinez (2016) – all were fourth round choices except Rodgers, a third-rounder. Rounds five through seven compensatory picks have proved worthless during Thompson’s reign.

A Bumper Crop in 2018

While free agent dealings have not yet concluded, an outfit named Over the Cap has projected the Packers will receive four compensatory picks next year, including a third-round selection.

The Packers, to date, have seven departed free agents who qualify for the program (though teams are only allowed to use up to four in a single season). They have only signed one qualifying unrestricted free agent, Martellus Bennett.

Over the Cap thinks the T.J. Lang signing, at $9.5 million per season with the Lions, will likely net the Packers a third rounder.

Micah Hyde’s five-year, $30 million deal with the Buffalo Bills will essentially cancel out the Martellus Bennett three-year, $21 million deal.

Over the Cap predicts the Packers might receive a fifth round pick for the loss of J.C. Tretter, a sixth round pick for Jared Cook, and another sixth round pick for Eddie Lacy.

Though Datone Jones and Julius Peppers also could fit into the sixth-round slot, they would not count due to the league’s four-compensatory-pick limit for any one team.

This means that Thompson has the rare opportunity to go after an additional one or two moderately-priced unrestricted free agents without it negatively affecting his sacred compensatory draft pick strategy.

Go for it Ted – you’ll never get another opportunity like this one.

Rob Born

Smart drafters don’t select the best available players, they fill a team’s positions of greatest need.



  1. Kato March 29, 2017

    I could imagine the mental masturbation Ted is experiencing right now. Fuckin weirdo. I can’t wait for this draft! See how many projects he picks, or mediocre players he picks because they remind him of his below average self in his playing days.

  2. PF4L March 29, 2017

    Demovsky seems to think the Packers will hold onto the remaining cap room to sign new deals for their own. He could be wrong, but this was said after he talked to Thompson.

    So we’re going to get some compensatory picks….that’s fantastic.

    Getting compensatory picks is pretty cool shit. Even if it takes losing a starter and a good depth player on the 0 line to do it.

    How many picks can we get if we lose Rodgers and Jordy? Lets pile them up!!

  3. MJ March 29, 2017

    How are those picks going to help us win while Rodgers is not 50 years old?

  4. Howard March 29, 2017

    Does anyone know if TT can trade up this year or trade for a player by using compensatory draft picks to be named for a future year (2018)? I use to like it when Ron Wolf and some other GMs would make trades with each other for past and future considerations, or player to be named later. The league had a problem with it because they did not know what the future and past considerations, etc. meant, and those GMs were working the system to their advantage. In this case the league would at least know that the trade was for a future draft pick in a future year. They may not know the exact round or pick number. I think that is what a team try’s if they have a potential for 4 compensatory picks in a future year. Try to leverage those picks to move up during the current draft, or use them to trade for a certain veteran player a team doesn’t need right after the draft.

    I don’t see a team with a very good QB not trying to upgrade the team this year by using extra picks from the upcoming year. Of course I have been wrong about TT showing any urgency to upgrade the team this year, so far.

    1. Cuban March 29, 2017

      I may be mistaken, but im pretty sure compensatory picks cannot be dealt.

      1. Kato March 29, 2017

        They can starting this year

        1. PF4L March 29, 2017

          My first thought was Cubans. But Kato could be right idk. Kato…where did you see this, not questioning it, but what was the source?

          1. Howard March 29, 2017

            I just saw an article on NFL.com were Arians with the Cardinals indicated the Cardinals may use next years comp picks to move up this year. The Cardinals believe they are going to receive some high comp picks and a full complement.

          2. Howard March 30, 2017

            I know that the NFL does allow trading Compensatory picks.

            Just to clarify that referenced article. Not sure Arians is saying you can trade a future compensatory pick, just that he expects to have extra picks next year so he may use the next years picks? I still do not know if the NFL would allow teams to trade a future compensatory pick they may not receive or has their “team name written on it.” It is more likely the team that believes it has comp picks for the future year may have to use their normal picks in the future year with the hope of having the comp picks to fall back on.

          3. Kato March 30, 2017

            I saw an article on the NFL website a while back, but haven’t been able to find it. I did see this article on the Browns website that directly states the patriots are receiving the Brown’s 3rd round comp pick in the Jamie Collins trade that was at the time a conditional pick.