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Does The Packers’ First-Round Trade Make Sense?

To put it in practical terms, most of us were frickin’ irate after we sat around for three-and-a-half hours to watch the Green Bay Packers make their first-round draft pick in the 2017 NFL Draft and then they traded the damn thing away.

No first-round pick and thus, no Packers’ action on Thursday night.

It would be nice if the league forced teams to make any trades before the draft. Then I wouldn’t be forced to sit around, wanting to stab myself in the face because of Roger Goodell, Trey Wingo, Jon Gruden, Mel Kiper, etc.

FOR NOTHING!

I could have actually been doing something productive or fun.

But that will never happen, so let’s evaluate this trade.

Browns get: Packers’ first-round pick (No. 29 overall)

Packers get: Browns’ second-round pick (No. 33 overall) and Browns’ fourth-round pick (No. 102 overall)

Who wins?

In terms of draft pick value, the Packers acquired more value, by a slight amount.

No. 29 has a value of 640. No. 33 (580) plus No. 102 (78) has a total value of 658, a whopping 18-point edge for the Packers.

That’s not really the point for Packer general manger Ted Thompson, though. He just wanted MORE picks.

The theory there being that the more picks you have, the more opportunities you have to hit on a quality player.

So, the second thing we need to do is look at how successful Thompson has been in each of these rounds — the second and the fourth.

Ultimately, the guy has been fairly money in the second round — Nick Collins, Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, Casey Hayward, Eddie Lacy and Davante Adams are the hits.

Meanwhile, Thompson has often crapped the bed when making his first-round pick — A.J. Hawk, Justin Harrell, Derek Sherrod, Datone Jones, Damarious Randall. It actually must have been a relief when he was able to ditch No. 29 on Thursday evening.

“PLEASE, TAKE THIS DAMN PICK FROM ME! I WILL ONLY SCREW IT UP!”

The gain in this scenario for the Packers is the extra fourth-round pick, since they gave up their first for a second.

So what has Thompson done in the fourth round?

Let’s run down the list.

  • Marviel Underwood*
  • Brady Poppinga
  • Cory Rodgers
  • Will Blackmon*
  • Allen Barbre*
  • Jeremy Thompson*
  • Josh Sitton
  • T.J. Lang
  • Davon House
  • Mike Daniels
  • Jerron McMillian
  • David Bakhtiari*
  • Johnathan Franklin*
  • J.C. Tretter
  • Carl Bradford
  • Jake Ryan
  • Blake Martinez
  • Dean Lowry

Those players marked with an asterisk were made with picks acquired via trade. As you can see, the only real winner among that group is the David Bakhtiari pick, which came in 2013.

More importantly, look at that list as a whole. There are some really terrible players on it.

Underwood, Rodgers, Barbre, Thompson, McMillian, Bradford… guys who were gone even before their rookie deals were up.

The highlights, other than Bakhtiari, are obviously Sitton, Lang and Daniels. Everyone else falls either somewhere close to terrible or unknown.

Let’s throw out the guys drafted in the last two years — Ryan, Martinez and Lowry. Thompson is 4-for-15 in the fourth round, which means he gets noteworthy production from those picks about 27 percent of the time.

So it’s actually unlikely the Packers will get anything from a fourth-round pick (unless it’s an offensive lineman).

However, considering Thompson is actually more successful in the second round than he is in the first, perhaps having two second-round picks is the real benefit here.

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Joseph Bonham

Joseph is a fiction writer when he isn't doing this. In his spare time he likes to do manly things like drink beer and procreate.

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10 Comments

  1. KILLER April 28, 2017

    This trade could be a disaster and it could be brilliant. A trade back from, say, 28 to 32 in the first round in exchange for a 4th is fair value. That would be fine or even good. But… that is not what happened. It was a move down from 29 to 33.

    So what? I will tell you.

    Option year, my friend, option year. If TT now makes a crappy pick you can take heart because that option year would not have been exercised. Congrats then on the no regrets crappy pick! But, if TT accidentally selects a good or great player then after four years they are free to sign wherever or, if resigned, need to be paid more than otherwise would be the case.

    So, just to recap, TT did not just trade down 4 spots. He gave away the whole option year thing. Even if — and I’m sure he will — TT claims they selected the exact same player they would have at #29 — there are still negative consequences…. if the pick is not a fail.

    There are lots of great players still available and many even at positions of need. King, Tankerley, Cunningham, Lamp, Awuzie, Mixon, Jordan Willis.

    But, how could this move back be brilliant? Another trade back, friend. Overnight teams plot and aspire and target and bargain and compete. Top of round 2 gets a lot of offers. That one player another team never thought would be there and just can’t live without. TT could slide back 7 spots, pick up another 3rd, and still get one of the players I listed. At that point he has still lost the 5th year option but could claim he would have taken that player anyway and also picked up a 4th and a 3rd. Then all would depend on whether he wasted those picks or not.

  2. Xlvordie April 28, 2017

    Ian rapoport says packers draftin qb Kizer from notre dame

    1. TyKo Steamboat April 28, 2017

      you heard wrong… Interest in Kizer & Packers looking to trade back because of DeShon Kizer.

      1. Xlvordie April 28, 2017

        Ian rapoport on twitter “Gb considering a qb with #33”

        I heard dat!!!

        1. PF4L April 28, 2017

          NFL draft experts….a dime a dozen.

          Mike Mayock got 4 picks right in his 1st round mock draft…impressive.

  3. TyKo Steamboat April 28, 2017

    we also got David Baktihari in the 4th round

    Packers will trade outta the 33rd pick too. There is significant interest for DeShon Kizer. Jets/Chargers 38/39…

    We’ll draft a cornerback. There are 3 good ones there. Awuzie (CU), King (UW) & Wilson (Fla.) …
    I hope it’s King but I say trade-back again. This is a weak draft class & We’re looking for 3 or 4 good players to come out of this inevitably

    1. KILLER April 28, 2017

      Wilson is worth only a third rounder. But Cordrea Tankerley, like Awuzie and King, has Rd 1 range 11-20 value. Any of those three would be steals.

      I don’t think TT takes OG Lamp. Likely the best player available and a position of need but then it would mean that TT let a pro bowler go in T..J. Lang and was forced to squander his top pick thus making his incompetence all the more graphic. Best case scenario Lamp would be as good as Lang and hard to imagine he would be immediately. And hard to make the “money saved” argument when still so far under the cap. It is not like the money saved not signing Lang (Or keeping Sitton. Or both.) was actually USED on another signing to help the team.

      Due to politics and fragile ego TT can’t take Lamp. I think a RB, Mixon or Cook. TT can sooth his ego as said RB can make a big impact right away and will be walking into an abandoned position. And the drop off from those guys and Kamara to the next rung is pretty big.

      On the other hand, going offense will not be popular and would be condemned by most as the defense is so weak. It is actually even weaker right now than last year as Peppers (7.5 sacks) and Casey Hayward are gone now. + Guion suspended the first four games and his performance possibly no longer propped up by PEDs. It was propped up from well below average to quite below average.

      It is sort of a Lion and the Tiger type choice for TT. Well, he made his bed and now he has to lay in it.

  4. icebowl April 28, 2017

    TTs explanation to media – “We wanted to add a little meat to shoring up the roster and that sort of thing. We thought it was important to get a little more oomph out of it”
    Huh ?

  5. Bob April 28, 2017

    Can somebody tell TT that the purpose of the draft is to fill the holes on the team he works for and not to pick up draft picks and pick through the lesser valued players at the end of the draft.You can have 20 picks and you let somebody who can start and make a difference right away slip past, you don’t gain anything for the 2017 season.

  6. PF4L April 28, 2017

    You could read killers drivel to decipher this i suppose, but that would entail actually reading his fictional novels, no thank you.

    The answer to the question if this trade makes sense, can only be answered by the quality of play with the extra 4th round pick.