Well that was…interesting. The 2020 NFL Draft is officially in the books. Now, the real work begins. Green Bay’s draft strategy will surely spur more questions then answers in a rabid Packers fan base. Somehow, Green Bay ended up passing on a whopping 36 receivers.
Round 1, pick 26: Jordan Love, QB, Utah State: Perhaps the most polarizing pick of the whole draft. The selection of the Utah State quarterback has divided Packers fans like no draft pick has since the team drafted…Aaron Rodgers. On the bright side, Love is able to make plays that few other quarterbacks can. His ability to deliver passes while outside the pocket on a string to his receivers is truly breathtaking. Questions remain about the Utah State gunslinger’s decision making after throwing 17 interceptions last season. However, with Aaron Rodgers locked in to the Packers starting quarterback job for at least the next two years, Love will have ample opportunity to learn. Jordan Love could very well be the steal of this entire draft.
Round 2, pick 64: A.J. Dillon, RB, Boston College: Dillon is a 6’2, 245 pound bruiser in the mold of Derrick Henry. Fortunately, he shows patience when hitting the hole, and the lateral agility to make defenders miss. He can be Matt Lafleur’s truck in the backfield, and the thunder to Aaron Jones’ lightning. Packers fans may like this pick a whole lot more when Dillon is bowling over defenders in the frozen tundra of Lambeau next January. Still, the positional value of selecting a running back with a second round pick in 2020 is…not great Bob!
Round 3, Josiah Deguara, TE, Cincinnati: The last tight end drafted out of Cincinnati turned out alright. Travis Kelce just won a Super Bowl with the Kansas City Chiefs and is one of the most dangerous match up weapons in the NFL. Alas, Deguara is no Kelce. He is a versatile player, who Matt Lafleur seems excited to use in a variety of roles. Reportedly, Deguara will end up playing the Kyle Juszczyk character in Green Bay’s offense. The Cincinnati product is a great fit for the Packers scheme, however, players of this ilk are usually drafted on Day 3. Juszczyk himself was a fourth round pick.
Round 5, pick 175: Kamal Martin, LB, Minnesota: Crucially, Martin has the range and burst to finish plays. He’s an excellent blitzer and is fantastic when attacking downhill. The former Golden Gopher also provides value in the passing game as his four interceptions can attest to. Number 21 stood out on tape, even when evaluating his teammate Antoine Winfield Jr. He’ll battle Oren Burks for the right to backup Christian Kirksey.
Round 6, pick 192: Jon Runyan Jr, OL, Michigan: I recently mocked Runyan to the Packers with a late round pick. The Michigan left tackle checks all the boxes athletically. Having seen his father, former Eagles Pro Bowler Jon Runyan ply his craft in the NFL, the Michigan product knows what it take to succeed. Runyan is a valuable pickup in the sixth round.
Round 6, pick 208: Jake Hanson, C, Oregon: Hanson played over 3,400 consecutive snaps in Eugene, and didn’t give up a sack until his senior year. Hanson set the tone for now Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert’s protection. He is a perfect fit for Matt Lafleur’s zone blocking scheme. Also, current Packers center Corey Linsley is a free agent after the 2020 season. Gutekunst may have just drafted his replacement.
Round 6, pick 209: Simon Stepaniak, OT, Indiana: When I mocked three offensive lineman going late to the Packers, people said I was crazy. Alas, the powers that be seem to have agreed. Stepaniak is an absolute road-grader. The Indiana product put up 37 reps on the bench press at the Combine in January. He will need to clean up his footwork at the next level, but could develop into a future starter in Green Bay. The Packers have been turning mid-round offensive lineman into quality players for years.
Round 7, pick 232: Vernon Scott, DB, TCU: Scott is a another hybrid player to add to the Packers defensive backfield. The TCU product has some impressive interceptions on his resume. Scott has the coverage range and upside to eventually become a contributor in sub-packages. He’ll start as a special teams demon in Green Bay.
Round 7, pick 242: Jonathan Garvin, DL, Miami: Maybe my favorite pick in the entire draft. I advocated for the Packers to draft Garvin in the 4th round last week. Getting the 20-year-old in the seventh round represents tremendous value. An incredible athlete, Garvin fits the mold of a Mike Pettine pass rusher. With a few tweaks, Garvin could become a rotational pass rushing stud.
Ultimately, this draft class has Matt Lafleur’s fingerprints all over it. It seems he may have taken the reins, while imploring Brian Gutekunst to secure him necessary offensive pieces. This draft was about molding the Packers in Lafleur’s image. Only time will tell if the brain trust at 1265 Lombardi made the right moves. If Love becomes the future in Green Bay, nothing else matters.Nick is a lifelong Packers fan. 4th and 26 was on his 13th birthday, unlucky. Follow him @CANDRAFTGEEK647 on Twitter for all your Packers draft needs and questions.