Let’s give Ted Thompson and his crew another pat on the back as the Green Bay Packers fan-dangled a highly regarded draft class once again.
The Packers traded for more picks, took advantage of sliding prospects and took the necessary chances on unknown players.
Here’s what I thought of each and every one of Green Bay’s eleven picks in the 2013 NFL Draft:
#1 (26th 0verall) – UCLA DE Datone Jones (6-4/285)
Datone spent most of his youth ballin on the basketball court, so he brings above average athleticism to the defensive end position. This was a fantastic pick for Green Bay because he played a similar defense at UCLA and he’s a defensive end who can play linebacker, opposed to last year’s first round pick, Nick Perry, who’s a linebacker who can play defensive end. The plan is for Jones to be the remedy to what Colin Kaepernick (read-option offense) did to the Packers’ defense in the 2012 playoffs.
#2 (61st 0verall ) – Alabama RB Eddie Lacy (5-11/230)
The Packers’ scouting department had to be elated when they saw Lacy available this late in the second round. He really is a perfect fit for what the Packers want to do in the running game. If you haven’t seen game-tape of Lacy, please visit youtube right now. I don’t want to hear anything about the Alabama offensive line because Lacy has shown he excels at breaking tackles, particularly in short-yardage/goal-line situations. Green Bay hasn’t had a 1,000 yard rusher since 2009, something that could change in 2013.
#4 (109th overall) – Colorado OT David Bakhtiari (6-4/300)
Bakhtiari finished his college career at left tackle, but also played at right tackle. He still had a year of eligibility left at Colorado, but decided he was ready to make the next step. I’ll take his word since he was working out with Clay Matthews this past off-season.
#4 (122nd overall) – Cornell OT J.C. Tretter (6-4/307)
Much like Bakhtiari, Tretter is a versatile offensive lineman who can possibly play at different positions. He started his college career at tight-end and has come a long way since being the quarterback of his high school.
#4 (125th overall) – UCLA RB Johnathan Franklin (5-10/205)
If you thought Lacy dropping to the back of the second round was lucky, what does it mean that Franklin was available all the way in the fourth round? This is the same guy who racked up 1,734 yards and 13 touchdowns in the Pac-12, one of best college football conferences in America. Another steal for Green Bay who now has insurance in case Lacy’s health becomes a concern.
#5 (159th overall) – Iowa CB Micah Hyde (6-0/197)
Another tremendous value pick for the Packers as Hyde was named the Big Ten’s top defensive back in 2012. He won’t necessarily play as a straight corner, but rather move around in Green Bay’s multiple defensive sets.
#5 (167th overall) – Mississippi State DE Josh Boyd (6-3/310)
Boyd is a big boy with “explosion” who projects to be a defensive end or nose tackle.
#6 (193rd overall) – Illinois State LB Nate Palmer (6-2/248)
A transfer from Illinois will attempt to provide linebacker depth after being an all-conference defensive end at Illinois State.
#7 (216th overall) – Grand Valley State WR Charles Johnson (6-2/215)
With the retirement of Donald Driver and departure of Greg Jennings, the Packers are making their annual stab at wide receiver gold. Johnson put together two 1,000 yard season and amassed 31 touchdown catches at Division II Grand Valley St.
#7 (224th overall) – Maryland WR Kevin Dorsey (6-1/207)
The Terrapin recorded 63 catches, 884 yards and seven touchdowns over the past two seasons at Maryland.
#7 (232nd overall) – South Florida LB Sam Barrington (6-1/235)
Barrington is an inside linebacker who was second-team All-Big East last year. A position that was thin to start the year should have depth in Green Bay now.
What did you think of the Packers’ 2013 Draft Class? Let me know by commenting below.
Nick Grays is a senior writer at the Sports Bank where he covers the Wisconsin Badgers and Green Bay Packers. He also enjoys sharing Fantasy Advice and pretends to be a Golf expert from time-to-time. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here or visit his blog Nick Knows Best. If social media is not your thing, shoot him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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