2018 Draft Preview: Edge Rushers

Current State

  • It appears that I am MUCH higher on Clay Matthews than most Packers fans. I’m not sure he’s ever going to be healthy, but when he is, he’s still one of the best around. He is getting up there in age, and it’s time to start grooming another.
  • Nick Perry is a starter in the NFL. He has his one awesome move (bull rush), and is a good run stopper. He’s not a superstar, but he’s not a weakness either. His problem has always been availability.
  • Fackrell is interesting to me. With him and Peppers, it was clear that the Packers coveted length. Fackrell has certainly not played up to being a 3rd rounder, and his ceiling is pretty low. I’m curious what Pettine does with him, but my guess is that Fackrell is going to have a rough go of it for a roster spot.
  • I like Vince Biegel, but I clearly think he was over-drafted. I hope he proves me wrong, but his injury problems aren’t new.
  • Reggie Gilbert is a guy that I will be watching for most in this training camp. I think he has more of a chance than Fackrell or Biegel.

So, I think Matthews and Perry are somewhere between good and very good as a starting tandem. But… that’s only if they are healthy.

Which they never are.

Draft Outlook

So, with their injury history and no proven backups, pass rush is clearly the Packers biggest need this year. They should get at least 2, and hopefully they can find someone with one of their top 2 picks.

I doubt the Packers are going to trade up for Bradley Chubb. The next tier only has 2 people on it: Harold Landry and Marcus Davenport. Personally, I don’t think Davenport has shown enough to warrant #14. Landry has short arms and is missing the length that they have in Fackrell. Still, Landry has the elite bend and pursuit that has made Matthews successful. Landry at #14 is ok for me, but only because it’s a position of need and I don’t want to go another year without starting the development of one.

If Davenport is there in the 2nd, which I doubt, I’d take him in a heartbeat. Maybe they take a DB in the first and trade up for Davenport like they did with Matthews, but I doubt that too. Still, DB/EDGE with the first 2 picks would be a mighty nice match to needs.

Josh Sweat and Lorenzo Carter have some elite physical traits, and I would interested in either.

Sam Hubbard is a high floor guy, but also a low ceiling. My guess is if he was a full time starter he will be a 4-6 sack a year guy. I’d like to have stability, but I think I’d like to go for more boom/bust.

The next group for me is Kemoko Turay and Uchenna Nwosu. Perhaps one of these guys in the 4th.

I seem to be higher on Kylie Fitts and Marquis Haynes than others. They are clearly day 3 guys, but they have a chance. Fitts has some nice measurables and Haynes was a good college pass rusher. Haynes might be pretty poor against the run though, and his pass rushing may also not translate at the next level. But, if it does, getting a situational guy in late rounds works for me.

The late rounder “try hard” guy for me is Joe Ostman. I’m not sure if he gets drafted or not, but he has recently been rising. I’d at least like to give him a chance in camp.


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