I used the ProFootballNetwork’s Draft Simulator to draft the Packers five players who I believe could immediately make an impact on the 2021-2022 team.
1st Round, Pick 29: CB Ifeatu Melifonwu, Syracuse
Ifeatu Melifonwu has the size, length and speed to dominate in the NFL. He plays extremely aggressive but is susceptible to poor eye discipline. I think he will complement Joe Barry’s mentality perfectly and would be in line to replace Kevin King if he progressed the way can. Only good things can happen if you put him into a CB’s room with Jaire Alexander.
2nd Round, Pick 62: LB Jabril Cox, LSU
Jabril Cox is a talented, aggressive athlete that will complement Joe Barry’s scheme. Cox won’t be relied on for a high percentage of snaps early in his career, but Barry can utilize him as a playmaker on key 3rd-downs. His versatility allows for him to be used in a multitude of ways but that also means it may take time for him to become an every-down player.
3rd Round, Pick 92: TE Tommy Tremble, Notre Dame
Tommy Tremble’s receiving stats at Notre Dame didn’t turn any heads, but his ability to block sure did. Tremble’s skill sets fits Lafleur’s scheme to a tee and with the possible departures of Marcedes Lewis and Robert Tonyan, Tremble would be a perfect fit.
4th Round, Pick 129: RB Chuba Hubbard, Oklahoma State
Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams tenure in Green Bay is uncertain, and while AJ Dillon made splashes in his rookie year the Packers will have to provide some depth at the position. Chuba Hubbard was as productive as any collegiate back ever was. His experience and poise would be him in line for relief duty behind Dillon.
5th Round, Pick 160: CB Kary Vincent Jr., LSU
Kary Vincent Jr. is an incredibly talented slot CB who can make plays in the NFL immediately. He has already faced a litany of the top receivers in the NFL during his three years in the SEC.
6th Round, Pick 192: DT LaBryan Ray, Alabama
Injuries and inconsistencies dropped LaBryan Ray’s draft stock. The Packers would gladly buy low on this high-upside prospect.
7th Round, Pick 222: OT Josh Ball, Marshall
Josh Ball’s size and athleticism projects him as an NFL tackle. But his lack of experience against top talent raises questions about his ability to beat guys not solely on his size. Packers look to once again develop a late-round offensive linemen into a future All-Pro.
The Packers have invested a ton of capital in the draft in recent years, and the defense has certainly made some improvements. But if the Packers want to get to where they need to go they need to continue to invest in the defense. This mock draft would give newly acquired DC Joe Barry a group of young talented players to mold the defense into what he wants. Aaron Rodgers has fully embraced Lafleur’s scheme so I expect the offense to hum again in 2021-2022 regardless of the moving pieces.——————
Kirien is a big fan of the Packers, Beer, and Battlestar Galactica. You can follow him on twitter at @KirienSprecher.