Green Bay Packer General Manager Brian Gutekunst, HC Matt LaFleur and DC Mike Pettine have quite a task facing them in the coming days and months. The Packer leadership must sift through the upcoming Free Agency period to find a gem or two who could contribute immediately. Next, they must navigate the NFL Draft to find a few potential blue chippers to plug holes in the roster.
The soft spots I and many have identified with the Packers appear to be Safety, Edge Rush, Tight End, Offensive Tackle and Offensive Guard. With the apparent decision to resign TE Jimmy Graham for another year I suspect the Packers to turn to the draft here to add quality depth. Look for TJ Hockenson, Noah Fant, TE’s Iowa or Irv Smith Jr, Alabama in the draft.
Available at Edge Rusher appears to be several quality players who I think would fit the Packers Defensive scheme. At Defensive End I’m looking for value as well as talent and some of the bigger names will be out of the Packers price range. I like Trey Flowers, Patriots, 6’2″/265 lbs. Flowers has 21 Sacks in his first three years and has the ability to play all across the line. Another quality DE would be Frank Clark, Seattle, 6’3″/265 lbs.. His 32 Sacks and 66 QBH’s in 3 years, would add power to the DLine. Between these two, I choose Trey Flowers.
The Packers could choose to sign a veteran LB with edge rush ability to bolster their defense. It seems this position has the greatest numbers and possibilities. The Ravens CJ Mosley, LB, is 27 years old, has only missed 3 games, and has 8.5 Sacks in 5 years. Then there’s Anthony Barr, LB Vikings, 13.5 Sacks in 5 years and also 27 years old. Barr has a bad history with the Packers, as he broke Aaron Rodger’s collarbone in 2017. Also at age 27 is Eagles LB Jordan Hicks, 5 Career Sacks, although he seems to have a history of injury. The eldest possibility for LB on my list is KJ Wright age 30, Seahawks, 11.5 Career Sacks. Unfortunately the cream of the crop here is Barr, can the Packers forget 2017? More importantly would Aaron forgive and forget. Well I can’t, I choose CJ Mosely LB Ravens.
The Packers have a great need to rectify their problems on the right side of the O-line. The top Tackles appear to be the Panther’s RT Daryl Williams, Bears RT Bobby Massie and the Dolphin’s RT Ja’Waun James. The top Offensive Guards available are the Ram’s Roger Saffold, Titan’s Quinton Spain, and the Steeler’s Ramon Foster. My feeling is the Packers stick with Bulaga and choose a blue chip O-lineman in the draft such as Jonah Williams, Dalton Risner or Cody Ford.
That brings us to another critical position for the Packers, Safety. The popular choices seem to be Landon Collins, NY Giants Adrian Amos, Bears and Earl Thomas, SeaHawks. The problem with Collins, Amos and Thomas is they will demand top money for their services. I don’t believe the Packers will entertain Collins, Thomas or Amos. If the Packers choose to sign a Free Agent Safety, I would think they pursue Tre Boston, Cardinals, Clayton Geathers, Colts or Kenny Vaccaro, Titans. Don’t forget there’s a few good safeties in the draft, like Deionte Thompson, Alabama, Nasir Adderley, Delaware, or C Gardner-Johnson, Florida.
However the Packers play out this Free Agency and Draft Season it will be a spectacle to follow. I will definitely enjoy watching this off season unfold unlike any other.
As Always, Go Pack Go,
PackerGregPackerGreg Veteran/Go Army @DrGTP on Twitter