Everyone — or most everyone — would be happy if the Green Bay Packers handed over Ted Thompson’s role as general manager to either Eliot Wolf or Brian Gutekunst after this failure of a season.
That’s probably not going to happen, in my estimation, but it’s becoming more and more likely that one or both of those guys will end up elsewhere. Wolf has already been mentioned as a candidate for the New York Giants’ GM job.
Both interviewed with multiple teams last year. They obviously want a top job. Both, we suspect, will get one.
But let’s look at this another way. It’s pretty clear that Ted Thompson hasn’t been able to assemble a roster good enough to compete for championship, once again. This year, glaringly so. I’ve probably said this 100 times — his draft-and-develop philosophy only works if he drafts well.
Lately, Thompson has not drafted well.
Let’s name some of the recent draft acquisitions who are total crap. First of all, the team cut three of their draft picks from this year’s draft coming out of training camp.
But let’s go back to just four years ago.
2013: Datone Jones (1st), Jonathan Franklin (4th), Josh Boyd (5th), Nate Palmer (6th), Kevin Dorsey and Sam Barrington (7th)
None of them are with the team. Franklin was an injury case, but everyone except Dorsey started multiple games for the Packers during their tenure. That says something about misjudging talent.
2014: Khyri Thornton (3rd), Richard Rodgers (3rd), Carl Bradford (4th), Jared Abbrederis (5th), Demetri Goodson (6th), Jeff Janis (7th)
I’d happily throw first-round pick Ha Ha Clinton-Dix into the mix here, but I know that would make some of you insane. But let’s be honest. He’s the new A.J. Hawk. Clinton-Dix was garbage this season and he coasts on his name and first-round pick status. That clown would be on the bench if he weren’t a first-round pick. Meanwhile, Micah Hyde is a Pro Bowler and likely All-Pro for the Buffalo Bills.
2015: Quinten Rollins (2nd), Ty Montgomery (3rd), Brett Hundley (5th), Kennard Backman (6th)
Yes, I am including Montgomery because, at best, he’s going to be the Packers’ third-string running back next season. They would be better off moving him back to receiver. Plus, the guy is injured more often than not. The jury remains out on Damarious Randall.
2016: Jason Spriggs (2nd), Kyler Fackrell (3rd), Trevor Davis (5th)
Spriggs will stick because he was okay after taking over for Bryan Bulaga at right tackle. Probably not a full-time starter in this league. I’d be surprised if the other two guys are on the team next season.
2017: Everyone but Jamaal Williams and Aaron Jones
Like I said, three of those draft picks weren’t even good enough to make the team — receiver Malachi Dupre (7th), guard Kofi Amichia (6th) and receiver DeAngelo Yancey (5th). Kevin King (2nd), albeit playing injured, wasn’t the No. 1 corner the Packers needed (that could still change). Josh Jones (2nd) played like a rookie and basically had one impact game (the Cincinnati game) and one impact play (the pick against Cleveland). Montravius Adams (3rd) is on the inactive list more than he’s on the game-day roster, which tells you all you need to know. Vince Biegel (4th) can’t get on the field over Fackrell. Devante Mays is in the doghouse because he can’t hold onto the ball.
We’re not going to judge this draft class just yet, but here’s the ultimate question.
Has Big Ted been buoyed by his lieutenants over the years?
Let’s look at that for a moment.
The Packers last went to a Super Bowl following the 2010 season. Here’s who has left the organization since 2009. (h/t PackersWire)
2010: John Schneider, director of football operations hired by the Seattle Seahawks as the executive vice president/general manager.
2012: Reggie McKenzie, director of football operations hired by the Oakland Raiders as general manager.
2012: Shaun Herock, assistant director of college scouting hired by the Oakland Raiders director of college scouting.
2013: John Dorsey, director of football operations hired by the Kansas City Chiefs as general manager.
2017: Tim Terry, assistant director of pro personnel hired by the Kansas City Chiefs as director of pro personnel.
I remember when I was a kid and people said Ronald Reagan was a puppet president. That he had already forgotten more than he already knew. The real thing he did well was surround himself with people who could actually do the job.
Is Ted Thompson the Ronald Reagan of Green Bay?
Are his current assistants in the personnel department actually capable or are they just sitting around waiting to get a real job?
It would seem, based on recent history, that Thompson is not capable and neither are the people under him. Unless they’re just sabotaging Big Ted to get the top job…
And what sort of organization would want that type of person getting their top job?
If the Packers get rid of Ted Thompson, which is obviously long overdue, they should pick someone from outside the organization. Fresh blood and a fresh perspective.
I have great doubts it will happen, but it most definitely should.