Safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix was the first one to whine about it. That is, the Green Bay Packers’ draft-and-develop personnel philosophy, which was “perfected” under Ted Thompson.
"I think that’s exactly what it is,” Clinton-Dix said. “We go from our starters to basically [street] free agent players. Sometime that can hurt as we’ve seen through the years that I’ve been here, that we don’t have the guys behind us that we had. Jarrett Bush [was] here when I was a rookie. We don’t have the Micah Hydes that can step in, we don’t have the Chris Banjos or the Sean Richardons that can step in and be held accountable. I think that’s the biggest thing we’re missing.”
Receiver Davante Adams joined the chorus on Thursday.
“I mean, it’s a clear thing,” Adams said. “You see it around the league. The more veteran, I don’t want to say backups, but when you have your two-deep [depth chart]. You start looking into your depth and the more veteran guys you have available the better off you can be. Not taking anything away from the Packers and how they draft and develop or anything like that because we have a very good team and we have some solid depth as well. But having those veteran guys that have seen it before and they’ve been out there for a little while definitely gives you a better chance to win the game.”
Clear to everyone except for Ted Thompson.
We’ve long railed on the draft-and-develop philosophy.
No. 1, why not use all avenues available to you to improve your football team? It’s like owning a Mustang, a Ferrari and a Toyota Corolla, but you only drive the Corolla because it’s better on gas and safer.
No. 2, draft and develop only works if you draft well. Thompson had some great success early on with picks like Aaron Rodgers, Clay Matthews, Nick Collins, Jordy Nelson, Greg Jennings, etc. In recent years, he has not hit on picks at the same rate or who produce the same impact.
And yes, I know the list of hits — David Bakhtiari, Mike Daniels, Blake Martinez… the success rate simply isn’t what it used to be.
Hopefully, the Packers’ new general manager sees the light and isn’t a draft-and-develop guy. I’d like to see a return to the Ron Wolf way of doing things. Acquire good players, regardless of method.