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Which Position Is The Packers’ Top Draft Need?

This is an update of a piece I did several weeks ago, in which four national football prognosticators issued their predictions on what player position the Green Bay Packers would choose with the team’s first draft choice. As I’ve stated before, I believe the Packers will first look to the position they most need help at and then worry about which players are best at that position. Last month, the guesses were all over the map: DE/OLB, tight end and cornerback.

Now that much of the free agency fireworks have taken place, I’ve expanded the number of forecasters. Almost all these current selections have been updated from March 15 to March 22.

  • Bucky Brooks (NFL.com): RB
  • Daniel Jeremiah (NFL.com): DE
  • Charlie Casserly (NFL.com): LB
  • Chad Reuter (NFL.com): G
  • Mel Kiper (ESPN): RB (Florida State’s Dalvin Cook, who you see above)
  • Luke Easterling (USA Today): RB
  • Rob Rang (CBS Sports): G
  • Dave Brugler (CBS Sports): G
  • Pete Prisco (CBS Sports): OLB
  • Will Brinson (CBS Sports): CB
  • Jared Dubon (CBS Sports): G
  • Ryan Wilson (CBS Sports): OLB
  • Brent Sobleski (Bleacher Report): LB
  • Chris Roling (Bleacher Report): G
  • Kristopher Knox (Bleacher Report): LB
  • Walter Cherepinsky (WalterFootball.com): CB
  • Charlie Campbell (WalterFootball.com): CB
  • N/A (DraftSite.com): OLB
  • Randy Gurzi (Fansided.com): DE

The results: Linebacker = 6; Guard = 5; Cornerback = 3; Running Back = 3; and Defensive End = 2.

As for these nation-wide “experts,” I had looked at their projections a month ago and the majority of them have changed their views, and will probably change them a time or two more leading up to April 27, the opening day of this year’s draft. I would attach very little trust to these ever-changing prognostications.

All those who are predicting the Packers will select a guard in the first round are nuts. They know nothing about the Packers or about Ted Thompson’s ways. Guard T.J. Lang just signed with another team and that’s reason enough to conclude the Packers will pick a guard in round one?

My bet is that most diehard Packers fans would think that the team’s first-round pick SHOULD be a cornerback. I would never want to predict who the pick WILL be, as that calls for reading Ted Thompson’s mind – an impossible task.

Rob Born

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



  1. PF4L March 22, 2017

    Everything besides safety, receivers, and QB?

    Is this a trick question?

  2. Kato March 22, 2017

    I cant think of a draft in recent memory where the Packers have as many needs as they do. OLB, DL, CB, RB, and G. Luckily for the Packers, RB doesn’t have to be addressed till round 4 or later. Also, lucky for them, DBs and pass rushers are considered deep positions. I would consider trading out of the first round with a QB needy team to get an extra pick. Then BPA for the first three picks (pass rusher, CB, DL)

  3. GoPack March 22, 2017

    Would think rb only if cook is availabe. Otherwise I’d hope it’s a de/olb. They need a damn pass rush and if they are gonna roll with the shit they have in the secondary they better damn well get some pass rushers. Can probably get a cb and rb in the second and third rounds.

    Thanks to ted, the o line is another need but they can get those in the later rounds.

  4. Empacador March 22, 2017

    Between Ripkowski and Montgomery they are all set for the amount of actual rushing McCarthy commits to during a game.

    1. PF4L March 22, 2017

      If we learned anything, we learned depth is important.

      1. Empacador March 23, 2017

        That’s why McCarthy had that 2nd FB on the roster.

  5. Howard March 22, 2017

    I think if a CB, DL, OLB, RB, or guard all had the same grade in the first round TT would take the DL or OLB. TT does not value guards as evidenced by Sitton and Lang. TT does not value RB as evidenced by last years roster. TT would not admit, or have an appearance he made a mistake with the corners drafted in 2015. To me it is OLB or DL in first, but watch out for a WR because there could be big changeover in WR after 2017. If the right one is there he might bite to show his brilliance,(not his first rodeo) if not in first round maybe in second.

    Maybe it will still occur (doubtful) once teams start releasing veteran players after the draft, but TT should have signed a quality CB, OLB or DL (Jean is not that guy) in free agency from another team. It would have helped in the draft. Right now you cannot get all the players needed in the draft alone even if you hit on all and that is very doubtful.

  6. Big B March 22, 2017

    “Experts” who say G or RB aren’t paying attention and have no sense of how Packers operate. Packers will target an OLB/3-4 edge rusher since a broken down claymaker is all there is. Need is even > at CB. TT’s first hope is to trade down, ala Jordy Nelson’s year, for an early 2nd + pick, if he thinks an edge rusher will still be there; if not, dab his eyes, and turn in the card. Pick a corner in the second round.

    1. PF4L March 22, 2017

      TT’s only hope is to trade down……

      My hope is for TT to …step down.

      So..what should we call this draft? The Hail Mary Draft? Isn’t that what it is? Nothing wrong with having hope, dreaming, keeping the faith and loving our Packer team which we all do. But at some point, some sense of reasoning and reality has to surface. That time is now for me. I don’t have any confidence this team can be a Championship team the way it sits. I’m not so sure we have as strong a team as last season for that matter. Ted has given me no reason to believe he can turn this defense around or strengthen the 0 line before he retires…None.

      Everyone’s banking on a a strong defensive draft, when’s the last time that happened? The last two drafts combined, we don’t have one real difference maker. But all of a sudden, Ted in one draft, is going to draft a handful of difference makers for the defense?


  7. KILLER March 23, 2017

    Teddy T. has an interesting strategy this year. He likes to say he takes the best player available and would probably like to do that. Problem is he drafts to fill a hole every year likely so the pick will see plenty of time on the field and maybe make Ted look good.

    Of course, obviously that strategy has not gone well as he looks accurately poor to everyone (except the ginger gap man). So, this year, he has a new strategy: Instead of having one hole, like, say, CB in 2015, and taking a player at that position (if you can call taking a safety in Demarious Randall and making him into a CB….) this year he has made sure to have lots and lots and LOTS of holes so he can truly take his best player available. Which, I assure you, will not actually be the best player available. Only in TT’s mind.

    Think of the holes: DE, NT, ILB, OLB, CB, OG, RB. That is a lot of holes. Heck, every pick every round will address a hole and will likely see lots pf playing time. The problem? Most of them will not belong on the field and TT could have spent money to fill needs with better talent. Instead, he hoards the money. For why? Certainly not for the “owners”.

  8. Deepsky March 23, 2017

    I think if I said the Packers will take a tweener defensive lineman converted to outside linebacker I would have a better than 75% chance of being right.

    Solomon Thomas, if he lasts that long. That’s my guess. Stanford guy, so Sam Seale will be pushing him.