The speculation is over. The mock drafts are out the window. A crazy Day 1 of the NFL Draft has concluded in Las Vegas. After going with LB Quay Walker at pick 22 of the first round, the Green Bay Packers decided to continue to build up the defense. The Packers selected Defensive Tackle Devonte Wyatt with the 28th overall pick of the 2022 NFL Draft. It’s clear that building a strong defense is key this season.
Wyatt became a regular starter for the Georgia Bulldogs in 2020 where he had 25 tackles, two for losses in 10 games. He then had his breakout season in 2021 where he earned a first-team All-SEC selection after having 39 tackles, 7 for loss, 2.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles in 14 starts. He anchored an explosive Bulldogs defense on their way to the National Championship in 2021.
The Packers struggled against the run last year. Kenny Clark can’t do it all himself and he needs some help on that Defensive front. He may get that with Devonte Wyatt. Like Clark, Wyatt is an athletic Defensive Tackle standing at 6’3 304 pounds who excels at plowing through initial blocks and locating ball-carriers quickly. Wyatt’s punch off the line of scrimmage saw him in the backfield many times in college, before the Offense even got started. Outside Clark and occasionally Dean Lowry, the Packers have lacked playmakers on the Defensive Line. Over time, Devonte Wyatt could be one of them,
With the Packers signing Jarran Reed and drafting TJ Slaton last year, Wyatt will likely be rotated along the Defensive front. There is no pressure to produce immediately, but Wyatt has the tools to be a force in the future.
One thing is for sure, this defense just got a whole lot scarier. I would not want to be an opposing Quarterback in the NFC North looking across the line at the Green and Gold.
Greg Meinholz is a 24/7/365 Packers fan. When he’s not spending time with his family, he can be found meditating in his Packers shrine with a good beer. You can follow him on twitter at @gmeinholz.