The NFL will hold the draft this year at the Radio City Music Hall in New Your City on May eighth to the tenth. The Green Bay Packers will have nine selections in the draft this year. They have a first round draft pick at number 21 overall. With two of their selections being compensatory selections which opens up to make some moves in the draft with their picks for the Packers. Compensatory selections cannot be traded and are awarded based on free agents the team has lost in the previous off season. It is offset by any free agents gained by the team at any time during that off season. The Packers gained the compensatory selections in round three and round five.
The Green Bay Packers will be pressed to pick up some defense in the draft. It is important for the team’s future to pick up another impact player on the defense to help out Mathews. With A.J. Hawk, Raji and Neal to help out Mathews, the key is to find a player that can adapt to the speed these guys give to the game. Although the defense did make some leaps and bounds in the latter part of the season there is some real work to be done if they plan to stay competitive and make a play-off run.
A good prospect for the Packers is the defensive end out of USC, George Uko. Last year’s season, Uko had five sacks and two kicks blocked. Uko has an impressive combination of power and speed with a willingness to line up where he needs to. This can be a benefit to the Packers in that they can settle Uko into a spot of their choice and need. Another god prospect for the Packers is the linebacker Jordan Zumwalt of UCLA. Zumwalt has a reputation for big hits and is a go getter. Zumwalt has reached double-digit tackles in three games in the 2013 season. He had an MVP performance in the Bruins victory over Virginia Tech in the Sun Bowl. Zumwalt intercepted a pass and knocked Logan Thomas QB out of the game. Taylor Hart DE for Oregon is a player for the Packers to go after as well. His record of 75 total tackles last season is much needed for the Packers. Hart has had a problem with a foot injury but with the off season and some good training, he could be ready to play by season opener if the Packers elect to draft him. The point is that the packers really need to consider who they draft and what side of the ball they want them on.
The Packers have one of the best offensive teams in the NFL. It could be said that they did not play like it last season but it must be taken into consideration the injury to Aaron Rodgers. With four different quarter backs in as many weeks the Packers were hard pressed to gain any rhythm. The hopeful Seneca Wallace made his debut in two games, leaving us to wonder what the Packers will do if they don’t have a good back up. After giving Scott Tolzien a shot, the Packers went out and found a familiar face in Matt Flynn. None of the backup quarter backs could match the play of Aaron Rodgers, but come on, who could.
If the Green Bay Packers decide to use one of their nine draft selections to pick up some offense, it could be in the TE position. Although Finley is a top rated TE, there was not much production from the spot this past season. A possible fit for the Packers is the TE Colt Lyerla out of Oregon. He has had some legal problems that may keep him from going in the first round which leaves him vulnerable to be there in the later rounds, giving the Packers a chance to steal him. Lyerla is versatile that can block, catch and come out of the backfield. He has an uphill battle but he is worth the look at least if he is still around in the later rounds of the draft.
The Packers offseason workouts will begin on April 22, one day after the Easter holiday. McCarthy is giving the team an extra day so the Packers won’t have to travel on Easter Sunday. The mandatory minicamp will begin on June 17 through the 19. After minicamp is over, a little vacation for the Packers and off to training camp which begins in July. Packers Nation can begin to make the count down for the season. With nine selections in the draft for the Green Bay Packers, this could be an exciting season.
By Jabar Morarend