The Green Bay Packers enter the 2021-2022 season with few question marks but undoubtedly one of the most pressing they need to solve before training camp begins is the tackle position,
David Bakhtiari will be sidelined for at least the beginning of the season and with the Packers deciding to let Rick Wagner walk in free agency, we don’t know a lot of what Brian Gutenkunst and company will do to address the 2nd most important position in the offense, behind the quarterback.
Here is the current depth chart according to ESPN.com–
Based on this listing and what we saw last season when Bakhtiari went down, we know that the Packers would like to kick out Elgton Jenkins to the left tackle position as Josh Nijam (the only other listed tackle) is nowhere near proven enough to warrant a roster spot, much less a starting role. Going Jenkins-Runyan-Patrick-Stepaniak-Turner looks stable enough but we also know that a good pass-rushing group can feast on this unit, so undoubtedly guys like Stepaniak and Lucas Patrick will have to take major leaps going into next season. While this could happen, it would be almost negligent for the Packers to not look to add depth at the tackle position.
It has been pretty well established in the draft industrial complex that this year’s offensive tackle draft class is one of the deepest seen in the past few years. With the expectation that the top players such as Penei Sewell, Rashawn Slater, Teven Jenkins, and Christian Darrisaw will be off the board before pick 29 comes up (also assuming the Packers do not move up to take a tackle unless one of those aforementioned guys drop), I don’t expect the Packers to take a tackle in the first round. Given other pressing needs on the roster such as cornerback and knowing there is still excellent value in picking a top-rated offensive lineman later in the draft, it seems like a reach at 29 to pick up a player like Dillion Radunz, Liam Eichenberg, or Alex Leatherwood.
So who could be available on pick 62 or later? The Mormon Mammoth
From Tony Pauline of profootballnetwork.com-
Brady Christensen is a solid NFL Draft prospect, and yet, many mock drafts don’t have him cracking the top three rounds. There are a few reasons for this, however.
Christensen isn’t an elite athlete, and he still has room to add more mass on his frame. Additionally, Christensen is older than the normal junior prospect, because of his earlier mission. He’ll be 24 years old heading into his rookie season. For a tackle prospect that needs some time to further develop, that may push him below other candidates.
Nevertheless, Christensen is fairly fundamentally sound. He also has good explosiveness out of his stance in the run game, and he has the anchor and physicality to engage defenders successfully.
Furthermore, although Christensen isn’t incredibly massive for his frame, he uses his length and power with proactivity. This makes him a sound investment on the line, from a mental perspective.
Brady Christensen can be a starter at the NFL level. His upside is capped a bit, however, and his age limits the number of prime years a team can get from him. Nevertheless, Christensen has enough length and functional mobility to be effective.
I would disagree with the “average athlete” assessment considering Christensen put up some really impressive Relative Athletic Score (RAS) measurements at BYU’s pro day…
Given the Packers needs and Christensen’s athletic profile, I think he would be an excellent pick at 62 or later.
——————Joe Kelley is a lifelong Packer fan born in Wisconsin and currently living surrounded by Patriots fans in New England- please send messages of support to @Jkelleylol on Twitter or @j.k.lolz on Instagram.