When Brandon put together our Green Bay Packers mock draft, he had Ted Thompson taking Wisconsin Badgers outside linebacker T.J. Watt in round one. A lot of other mocks have the same pick.
Of course, mock drafts are usually way, way off, which is why we’ll only have one of them.
That doesn’t mean Watt, a Wisconsin native and brother of J.J., won’t be the pick. The Packers have a need for another pass rusher.
They’re currently counting on two guys who are never healthy for 16 games — Nick Perry and Clay Matthews — to generate their pass rush. Behind that, there’s not much, unless 2016 third-round pick Kyler Fackrell makes a big leap in year two.
It’s a position that needs to be fortified now that Julius Peppers and Datone Jones are gone. It’s also worth pointing out that pass rushers can make a big impact as rookies and often do. Conversely, cornerbacks, unless they’re chosen high in round one, rarely have the same year one impact.
So now, the smoke.
This comes from Tony Pauline.
A source with ties to the team tells me he feels the Green Bay Packers are gearing up to select T.J. Watt in Round 1.
Pauline has been right about the Packers’ draft goals before. That said, no one knows how the first round is going to unfold.
Perhaps a surprise team takes Watt higher than he’s projected. Maybe this was leaked to keep another team away from another player.
As for Watt, like any kid that grows up playing football in Wisconsin, he’s obviously thought about playing for the Packers.
“It’s awesome to see the support that team has, and obviously anyone who gets to play for that team it’s a special fan base, and it would be awesome to be a Green Bay Packer. But at the same time, I’m just keeping all options open knowing that you just never know what happens on draft night.”
You never know, but Watt would be a great pickup for the Packers, if they can get him.