I have a pretty good idea of who I would want the Packers to take at each slot (which will, of course, evolve as we continue to get input and the Combine takes place), so I’m looking to branch out a little bit in the middle rounds and explore different player combinations.
I don’t necessarily want to ignore my board, but I’m looking at different players in the same talent tier and not necessarily my favorites. I’m hoping this makes these more informative and gives additional perspective on how things could shake out in April.
Here’s how the first draft with this approach worked out:
The board fell very favorably on this one and gave me the choice between Jachai Polite and Brian Burns at the Edge with Ed Oliver and Rashan Gary still available. I rolled the dice and went with Ed Oliver. He’s an extremely disruptive lineman that can provide the pass rush that is so sorely lacking. I’m hoping an Edge falls to 30, but if not, I still feel good that pass rush was addressed.
When 30 rolled around, I was thrilled to see Jachai Polite still on the board. I was so thrilled, that I turned down an offer from the Patriots to move down one spot and pick up a 3rd round pick. Getting two top 10 talents, and catching the last stud at Edge, was too much to pass up.
I avoided the flashy pick of Noah Fant and went with Offensive Line help in Garrett Bradbury. A Center capable of shifting to Guard, he has clean technique and high intelligence for the game. Quick feet and high mobility make him a great pick for the interior in a new zone blocking scheme – he’s exactly what new offensive line coach Adam Stenovich will be looking for in his guys.
There were no safeties that warranted a spot here to fill the next biggest need, but there was a Defensive Back that fit nicely here. I took Amani Oruwariye, a big corner at 6’2″ 205. He’s physical and uses his frame and strength to disrupt routes. Good ball skills and very smart, he does need to clean up his tackling technique, but brings a new skill set to the defensive backfield that I really like.
I’m a big fan of Deebo Samuels in the slot and DeMarkus Lodge as an outside receiver, but one receiver I haven’t taken yet is JJ Arcega-Whiteside. I’m taking him here because he has no business slipping to the 4th. At 6’3 225, he’s an imposing figure that dominates jump balls, fades, and contested catches. He gets off the line with a nice burst, but doesn’t have great long speed. Check out this breakdown:
J.J. Arcega-Whiteside isn’t your typical jump-ball specialist, as @BradKelly17 decided to detail his route running ability. Do you like this video? Click the link for the full one: https://t.co/ss0gHit2MX pic.twitter.com/cccrfAOWbn
— The Draft Network (@DraftNetworkLLC) January 30, 2019
I like picking a safety with the second pick in the 4th round, aka “The HaHa Pick” because I know it will be an improvement (and because I’m childish). This time I went with Mike Edwards. He’s a strong safety, but he really flashed coverage skills at the Senior Bowl, which makes me think he can be a versatile contributor with multiple roles under a coach like Pettine.
I was pleasantly surprised to be able to grab Isaiah Buggs here. He’s a physical lineman that can set an edge with a 6’3 well-balanced 300 pound frame. His first speed isn’t anything amazing, but he has speed, power, and great rip moves inside. He was the best Defensive Lineman in the Senior Bowl and would be a great value in the 5th.
I’m not going this deep yet, but stay tuned – it’s coming!
I really like seeing Oliver slip to 12 because I think he hepls the pass rush need in a more versatile way. Plus, if the Packers don’t take an Edge at 12, that’s one more Edge that has a chance to fall to 30. When that happens like this, the Packers start looking like the winners of the draft.
Edwards can immediately start at safety and give Pettine more flexibility in coverage schemes along with Oruwariye. Buggs just adds more unique skill sets to the font line.
Bradbury walks into a starting position on offense and Arcega-Whiteside can immediately contribute in sub packages and become the goal line weapon we thought Graham would be.
Even with a big receiver, Tight End needs to be addressed, in addition to more offensive line depth.
- Josh Allen went number one overall, which was a stretch even before any draftinks said stuff like this:
I have serious concerns about Kentucky EDGE Josh Allen..
Watched 2018 vs UGA, BAMA, UF
30 sacks, 40.5 TFL over last 3 years
189 3rd down snaps in 2018
2017 vs UGA, TENN
188 3rd down snaps in 2017
I just don't see it…
Nice player? Sure.
Top side of 1st round? Hell No.
— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) January 30, 2019
- Dalton Risner lasted until the third round, which has not happened since the Senior Bowl.
Check out our PFTW 2019 Mock Draft Archive to see how other scenarios played out!