Green Bay Packers Draft Report
Round 1 (26): Jordan Love, QB, Utah State
We've all heard the hate, we've all heard the comparisons, and we've all seen the low draft grades. In my humble opinion, this is a great pick, when it comes to preparing for the future, and that's about it. Aaron Rodgers is the perfect quarterback for Jordan Love to learn from, and the Packers hope Love can be the next Packers gunslinging quarterback. On the other hand, this is the worst possible pick when it comes to putting the Packers in a position to make the leap, and win now. When Aaron Rodgers is 36, and you need to win in the immediate future, picking someone who can't be on the field at the same time as Rodgers is obviously not the pick. Love's arm talent is off the charts, but he struggles with decision making, and needs to clean that up. For the sheer reason that the Packers drafted a backup who likely won't even play on his rookie contract, in a league where winning with your quarterback on a rookie contract is everything, this gets a low grade for me.
Pick Grade: C-
Round 2 (62): AJ Dillon, RB, Boston College
Arguably the Packers two strongest positions on their roster were quarterback, and running back. The Packers drafted those two positions in the first two rounds of the draft. Lafleur has always loved having a committee of guys in the backfield, even said back at the combine that he wanted to add a third guy to that lethal combo of Jamaal Williams, and Aaron Jones. Again, I think this is a totally fine pick, if the Packers weren't a team that made the NFC Championship last season. If this was a team who was rebuilding, and preparing for the future, having a third running back is just fine, they put themselves in a position where they don't need to pay Williams or Jones, and they likely will keep all of them healthier by spreading the touches. The issues lies in the fact that the Packers need receiving weapons, and drafting a bruising running back out of Boston College is not going to cut it. It's a horrible pick when it comes to winning now, and yet again, we see that the Packers are preparing for the future.
Pick Grade: C-
Round 3 (94): Josiah Deguara, TE, Cincinnati
On the surface, this looks like the correct pick, as the Packers finally get a weapon for Rodgers here, one that can make an immediate impact. Upon a deeper dive, you'll realize that Deguara is primarily a run blocking type tight end. Scouts have even gone far enough to say that he could play the H-Back position, which is essentially a fullback, tight end hybrid. Deguara has sure hands, and rarely drops the ball, as well as runs decent linear routes, but will likely lack the ability to beat man coverage in the league, and again, his strength lies in the run game. Deguara is a good prospect, who will likely have a strong impact in the league, but you have to ask yourself, is this the right pick for the 2020 Green Bay Packers? I don't think so.
Pick Grade: C+
Round 5 (175): Kamal Martin, ILB, Minnesota
So the Packers go linebacker here with their fifth round pick. Martin was one of the better players on a very good Minnesota team, who plays pretty well in the run game. NFL.com expected Martin to go un-drafted, and the Packers snagged him in the fifth round, so obviously they see something in him. The Packers lost Blake Martinez in free agency, and needed two starters at those inside linebacker spots. Martin plays the run game well, but is a bit stiff in coverage, and doesn't diagnose route combos, or blocking schemes very well. The Packers still need weapons, and with some still available even in the fifth round, I cannot in good conscious, give this a high grade.
Pick Grade: C
Round 6 (192): Jon Runyan, OL, Michigan
Son of legendary Philadelphia Eagles lineman, Jon Runyan, this is the first acceptable pick that the Packers made, sadly it had to come in the sixth round. Runyan will likely make the transition from tackle, to guard for the Packers. He is a very smart player, recognizing stunts, and taking great angles on a play-by-play basis. He does however land far too high with his hands, and sometimes his pad level rises as a result. The Packers can never go wrong adding depth to the offensive line, especially after losing Bulaga in free agency to the Chargers. This is where we start to pick up on a trend that the Packers want to seriously buff up that run game.
Pick Grade: B-
Round 6 (208) Jake Hanson, C, Oregon
A continuation of the aforementioned theme. The Packers want to lean on the run in the future. They now have 3 starting caliber running backs, and they have already spent 3 picks on offensive linemen/tight ends. Instead of going out and getting weapons for Rodgers, the Packers want to make that run game as good as it can be, and lean on that. In my opinion, this isn't an awful idea. Rodgers has been declining for a couple of years now, and you could say it's because he doesn't have the weapons, and maybe you'd be right, but the Packers obviously don't think so. This is not an awful pick, as adding offensive line depth is never a bad idea, but it's not addressing any needs, so it gets a mediocre grade.
Pick Grade: C+
Round 6 (209) Simon Stepaniak, OL, Indiana
Further continuing the trend, as the Packers draft an offensive tackle out of Indiana here, who's strength lies in the run game without a doubt. For the last couple picks I have said that you can never have too much depth on the offensive line, but I'm going to rescind that here for the sole reason that they still haven't drafted a receiver through 6 rounds. We know that they want the new identity to revolve around the run game, and so be it, but you need more than just Davante Adams to throw to, it's just a fact. There were many opportunities for the Packers to get receivers, as both Donovan Peoples-Jones, and James Proche went in the 6th round, these were great trade-up candidates, and the Packers made no moves.
Pick Grade: C
Round 7 (236): Vernon Scott, DB, TCU
Scott may see the field faster than many other seventh round picks due to a hole that needs to be filled on the Packers roster. He is incredibly versatile, and that's why the Packers like him. Scott may be the Packers week one starter at slot corner, as the team let Tramon Williams walk. Scott produces turnovers. He actually forced 4 in only 3 games last season at TCU. He didn't become a starter until his senior season, but produced immediately once he found the field consistently. This is probably my favorite pick of the entire draft for the Packers, as it actually addresses a serious need, but it could be ruined if Vernon is thrown into the fire as a starting corner too quickly.
Pick Grade: B
Round 7 (242): Jonathan Garvin, EDGE, Miami
Garvin is a versatile edge rusher, with the capability of coming off said edge out of a 3-4, or a 4-3. Obviously in Green Bay, that will be out of a 3-4. He is a productive rusher, but not what the Packers need at all. With Preston and Zadarius Smith coming off the edges, and both under contract for the next 3 seasons, this is just a pick to add depth. I can't dock the Packers for adding depth, but I can dock them for not addressing needs, such as receiver, and inside linebacker.
Pick Grade: C
The Green Bay packers had 9 picks in the 2020 NFL Draft. If I had told you a month ago, that they would spend 0 of those 9 picks on a wide receiver, you would think I was crazy. You would think I was out of my mind. If I had told you that they instead drafted Aaron Rodgers replacement, and a third running back, you'd probably laugh. The Packers added solid depth to the offensive line, further clarifying that they are now a run heavy team, and they grabbed some positions of need on defense, filling holes at inside linebacker, and that third cornerback spot. Overall, the fact that the Packers biggest need was receiver, and they did not even draft one is what's going to seriously hurt their draft grade.
Overall Draft Grade: C-