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Packfanfb's "Run It Back" Mock 2021


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It's April 1st, four weeks before the draft so I figured I'd get off the sidelines and make a mock. 

Pre-Draft Action: 

  • Packers have resigned Jones, King, Lewis and Lancaster
  • I don't anticipate any other signings 4 weeks before the draft. 
  • Packers current cap space around $3.5m
  • I think an Adams extension is coming, but not before the draft

Draft: 

Round 1: Pick 29: Jevon Holland – DB – Oregon – 6’1”, 195 lbs

2021 Dolphins Draft Profile: Safety Jevon Holland - Full Press Coverage

Packers get to 29, the top CBs they want are gone (i.e. Greg Newsome) and while there are some intriguing OTs on the board, the Packers like the depth there and instead go with a guy at or near the top of their board, Holland. Prior to opting out for the 2020 season, Holland was probably the consensus No. 1 safety coming into the 2020 season. Even better for the Packers, he’s versatile AF. He reminds me of Savage in a number of ways, including his ability to play in the slot. Barry has stressed how important that “star” position for the Packers defense will be this year. I’m not convinced Sullivan is that guy even if he’s our No. 3 overall CB. Holland is a better athlete, with better instincts, and can play virtually anywhere you put him on the back-end. Whether it’s slot, the dime S position, or free safety (allowing us to move Savage around, or vice versa), Holland may be the missing piece we need to complete our secondary for 2021.

 

Round 2: Pick 62: Dyami Brown – WR – Oregon – 6’0” 189 lbs (RAS: 8.42)

Dyami Brown 2021 NFL Draft Profile

Packers have neglected the WR position in the early rounds of the draft for years, but they really can’t this year for the simple reason that MVS, St. Brown and Funchess are all FAs after 2021. The Packers will extend Adams at some point and Lazard will likely be back as a RFA next season, but if the Packers lose MVS, they lose the only true deep threat on the roster. Enter Brown. He didn’t run a dynamic route tree at UNC but he’s a dynamic player, especially downfield. Would instantly add another legit speed threat in year 1 and a guy who can develop into a better overall WR next to Adams.

 

Round 3: Pick 92: Brady Christensen – OT – BYU – 6’5”, 302 lbs (RAS: 9.83)

BYU left tackle Brady Christensen named Consensus All-American

Frankly, I’m fine with the Packers waiting until late Day 2 to address the OT position because: (1) it’s a deep class and (2) the Packers have historically been better drafting OL in the middle rounds anyways. I think Christensen is still around for our 3rd round pick because he’ll be 24 during his rookie season and some may view him as a tweener OT/OG because of his 32.25 inch arms. I just think he’s a damn good player who you can plug in at RT or OG and not think twice about it. He was dominant this past season with BYU protecting Zach Wilson and offers the very versatility that the Packers covet with their offensive lineman. This is an easy choice if he’s there at 92.

 

Round 4: Pick 135: Keith Taylor, Jr. – CB – Washington – 6’2”, 187 lbs (RAS: 7.13)

Keith Taylor, Washington, Cornerback

In Round 4, the Packers add a true boundary CB to the mix. Taylor shares some similarities to King in terms of his size and is also a Wash alum. Played just 4 games last season due to the Wash season being cancelled but had a very good Senior Bowl week. He probably lasts until early Day 3 because he’s not a burner on the outside. Ran a 4.52 at his pro day and his agility drills were “good” but not great. Should be able to compete for a backup CB spot in year 1.

 

Round 4: Pick 142 – Bobby Brown III – IDL – TAM – 6’4”, 321 lbs (RAS: 9.67)

Bobby Brown, Texas A&M, Defensive Tackle

Brown is a boom or bust pick who likely is climbing boards. Late bloomer at TAM with really only one year of production (last year) where he had 5.5 sacks and 7.5 TFLs. Some questions about an inconsistent motor are part of the reason he’s a Day 3 guy. Absolutely tore up his Pro Day including a 4.98 forty, 33 vert and 9’5” broad…all at 321 lbs. Could play multiple positions across the DL for the Packers.

 

Round 5: Pick 173 – Chris Evans – RB/WR – Michigan – 5’11”, 211 lbs (RAS: 9.84)

Michigan RB Chris Evans: 'I'm just ready to play' - mlive.com

Evans is a weird story. Had a ton of potential at Michigan but never really materialized into a large role. Missed the 2019 season after being suspended for academic issues, and then returned in 2020 but had a very limited role. So his best college years were as a Freshman and Sophomore. That being said, he could be the swiss army knife weapon we’re looking for to replace Ervin’s role. Evans is great out of the backfield and lined up all over the place for Michigan during his first few years. Didn’t blaze in the 40 (4.52), but otherwise, his Pro Day was elite from an agility standpoint. Likely would have upside in the return game as well.  

 

 

Round 5: Pick 178 – Sadarius Hutcherson – OG – S. Car. – 6’3”, 321 lbs. (RAS: 9.89)

A massive jar of peanut butter': How South Carolina OL Sadarius Hutcherson  became SEC-ready – The Athletic

Packers like big men who can move and that’s Hutcherson. In a year where we lost Linsley, Wagner and Taylor, plus Bakh is coming off of injury, I think the Packers may double up again on the OL. After grabbing Christensen in the 3rd, Hutcherson is good value in the 5th. Big man who posted an elite RAS score. Most importantly, he’s versatile, having played both left and right guard, as well as left tackle over 4 years of playing at SC.

 

Round 6: Pick 214 – Derrick Barnes – ILB – Purdue – 6’0”, 238 lbs (RAS: 8.42)

Purdue Football: Derrick Barnes Moving Up Draft Boards - Hammer and Rails

Barnes is a productive linebacker who plays with an attitude. Limited from a height standpoint but surprised with a 4.58 forty at his Pro Day. Solid depth addition to the LB room with ST ability.

 

Round 6: Pick 220 – Jonathan Adams – WR – Ark. St. – 6’2”, 210 lbs (RAS: 7.53)

Chicago Bears Scouting: Jonathan Adams Jr. 2021 NFL Draft Profile

He may not be quite athletic enough for the Packers, but I’d love to take a late round flier on Adams. I’ve wanted him since I watched him single-handedly dominate the Kansas St. secondary earlier this year (8 rec, 98 yards, 3 tds). He was on one that day and if nothing else, is a monster at going up and high pointing/contested catches. Not a burner (4.59 forty) but did post explosive vertical and broad scores (39" and 11’). Has the size the Packers like at the position.

 

Round 7: Pick 256 – Ta’quan Graham – DE – Texas – 6’3”, 292 lbs (RAS: 9.68)

Ta'Quon Graham, Texas, Defensive Tackle

Graham is a developmental 3-tech DL with explosive traits. At worst, he ends up on the PS; at best, makes the 53 as a situational pass rush guy, much like Keke his rookie year.

 

Post Draft: After the draft concludes, I could see the Packers filling in a few spots, if needed: 

  • Possible resignings: Wagner, L. Taylor, Ervin 
  • Possible new additions: Brett Jones (Packers have shown interest) or another veteran OL or IDL. 

 

Edited by packfanfb
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God I wanted to hate on this draft because of the first pick.

But, I cannot.  While I do not like Holland @29, I do like him overall.  And I do see a fit.  Not going to knock you for taking your guy.

I was going to knock on taking him without finding a capable tackle in the draft, but you got Brady is round #3.  That's good value there.  

I don't like WR the second, but I do like Brown, and you found IDL, IOL, WR to hedge bets and other good players at the end of the draft.

So while I don't agree with the selections, I think you did a fine job.  More than fine.

I think you upgraded the slot position, backed up the outside corner position, added talented WR to the mix (I like Adams), and found a good developmental tackle.  With a few "fliers" thrown in for good measure.

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Really like Day 3(especially because of the Brown and Adams picks) except for the Hutcherson pick given that we are LOADED at IOL. Also, you have us potentially signing Brett Jones who would become our starting Center which would kick Jenkins back to Guard with Lucas Patrick most likely becoming the other Guard unless Bakh is back and, in your mock here, Brady Christensen would become the starting RT thus putting Billy Turner back at RG where he belongs. It would also make no sense with Stepaniak coming back, Runyan having another year in the system, and several other UDFA's that were kept on the roster at that position coming back as well - notably Zach Johnson. I would've went with another OT or IDL there.

The Graham and Barnes picks are a bit of a head scratcher to me, but only because they don't seem to fit the mold of what we traditionally look for at said positions(does that change under Barry, however?). I think you could get both in UDFA, but I could see where you would want to lock those two role players in with a pick given that Barnes has been more successful as an undersized pass-rusher that could probably drop inside on obvious running plays while contributing on ST's. Graham could probably add 15-20 lb.s and replace Lancaster over time in that back up NT role that would free up Kenny in certain packages where we would run an even front and has "rotational IDL" written all over him.

I like that you took a chance on Chris Evans. We haven't particularly talked about it on this board, but the team has quietly been successful in developing RB's over the past couple of years to a point where the RB room will be full at RB2/3. We all know Jones and Dillon are the two-headed monster at RB1, but we've quietly amassed a lot of talent behind him creating an easy decision to let Williams walk TBH. Despite his 4.52 40 time, I also like the Taylor pick as well; he's only 187 but I suspect he'll put on another 10-15 lbs. of muscle to become even more physical than he already is. Even at only 187 I suspect he still has enough strength to match up against bigger, more physical WR's leaving Jaire, Jevon(in this mock at least), and Savage to cover the quicker receivers and/or provide over-the-top help for King in the case of Jevon and Savage at Safety. I also like that he's a willing tackler in the running game as well.

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There seems to be this assumption Adams is going to be extended. Not convinced this is going to be the case. 

He is going to command a huge contract.  Estimates have Packers needing to find 50m of cap relief as things stand in 2022 so any new contract must have an extremely low cap hit in 2022. So if you are going to lower his cap hit in 2021, have a very small cap charge in 2022 then you are looking at astronomical cap hits in 2023+.  Even if the cap does rocket,  having astronomical cap hits on what will be (in terms of NFL seasons) be a very old receiver doesn't seem a great idea.

Be interesting to see how Gute handles receiver in the draft - we don't need any really for 22 and there isn't the roster space but we potentially need  multiple guys ready for 23.

 

 

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3 hours ago, mikemike778 said:

There seems to be this assumption Adams is going to be extended. Not convinced this is going to be the case. 

He is going to command a huge contract.  Estimates have Packers needing to find 50m of cap relief as things stand in 2022 so any new contract must have an extremely low cap hit in 2022. So if you are going to lower his cap hit in 2021, have a very small cap charge in 2022 then you are looking at astronomical cap hits in 2023+.  Even if the cap does rocket,  having astronomical cap hits on what will be (in terms of NFL seasons) be a very old receiver doesn't seem a great idea.

Be interesting to see how Gute handles receiver in the draft - we don't need any really for 22 and there isn't the roster space but we potentially need  multiple guys ready for 23.

 

 

It's why we should've inked the extension during the season for less money. There has been no indication that Adams is demanding a king's ransom, nor has there been any indication that the team has even broached the topic of extension talks. 

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Love your picks where you have then after Round 2, although a couple highly unlikely they last that long.  Absolutely loathe your first 2 picks...not the players...the picks

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I love Jonathan Adams and Bobby Brown III as later picks.  I also really like the Ta'quan Graham pick.  Add more DL and see what sticks!

 

I don't love Holland.  And I can't put my finger on why.  Maybe I just see Damarious Randall and know that didn't work out?

Overall, I would probably really like this draft class.  Though I would probably be cursing Gute and co. during the first two rounds when we didn't take an OT.

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