Green Bay Packers 2021 NFL Draft Review

1:13 PM, Apr 30, 2012   |    comments
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1 - Nick Perry, OLB, Southern California (6-3, 271); 2 - Jerel Worthy, DL, Michigan State (6-2, 308); 2 - Casey Hayward, CB, Vanderbilt (5-11, 192); 4 - Mike Daniels, DT, Iowa (6-1, 291); 4 - Jerron McMillian, S, Maine (5-11, 203); 5 - Terrell Manning, ILB, North Carolina State (6-2, 237); 7 - Andrew Datko, OT, Florida State (6-6, 315); 7 - B.J. Coleman, QB, Tennessee-Chattanooga (6-3, 233)

Top Picks Analysis: Improving a defense that was the Packers' obvious weak link last season was clearly the primary priority of Ted Thompson, as evidenced by the fact that the esteemed general manager's first six picks came on that side of the ball. The needs were so great that Thompson actually stepped out of character and traded up twice in the second round for Worthy and Hayward following the selection of Perry, a powerful and athletic specimen who'll be asked to rush the passer as an outside linebacker opposite All-Pro Clay Matthews after working almost exclusively as a 4-3 end at USC. It's a role the 22-year-old is physically able to perform, as he's possesses rare explosion off the edge, but concerns about his playing temperament were what kept him on the board until the late first round. Worthy also comes with an inconsistent reputation and must make a system conversion as well, with the talented college tackle likely ticketed as a five-technique end in Dom Capers' scheme, but has the requisite strength and wide body for the switch. Hayward is a quick and intelligent corner who may not be ideally suited for Capers' press coverage scheme, as he lacks strength and has just average speed and acceleration. He could possibly be groomed as a safety, where the Packers are thin after Nick Collins' recent release.

Best Value Pick: Datko was once a prized prospect who's been dogged by persistent shoulder problems throughout his career, with those medical red flags causing his stock to plummet. If healthy, he has the footwork and technique to become a solid zone-blocking left tackle with added strength.

Questionable Calls: The choice of Daniels in the fourth-round was a bit of a head-scratcher for a 3-4 team like the Packers, as he's not stout enough to play the nose and too short for a two-gap end. Not taking a quarterback before snaring the fiery but accuracy-challenged Coleman was showing an awful lot of faith that former practice-squad member Graham Harrell can take over the No. 2 role previously held by Matt Flynn.

Summary: A real mixed bag here. Perry and Worthy both have big-time ability but erratic motors, Hayward isn't an elite prospect and Daniels doesn't have a true position. The later rounds did yield a few intriguing candidates in Datko, Manning and McMillian, but this doesn't have the look of one of Thompson's best drafts.

FINAL GRADE: C+

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