Grading The 2021 Green Bay Packers Draft Picks


The Green Bay Packers came into the NFL Draft looking to address positions of need. Many were hoping that the Packers would be active in trading up in which they were moving from #92 to #85, giving up a fourth-round pick to select wide receiver Amari Rodgers. Overall, Green Bay addressed the center position and picked up a wide receiver, as both could make an immediate impact.

Round 1, Pick 29: Eric Stokes

ROUND 2, PICK 62: C Josh Myers, Ohio St.

Grade: B

Myers is slated to be the Week 1 starting center for the Packers. This will allow them to use Billy Turner at right tackle and keep Elgton Jenkins at left guard or start him at left tackle in the event David Bakhtiari can not start the season. Myers is a bigger center than Corey Linsley and will be more of a power run-blocker.

Some of Myers’ strengths are his one-on-one blocking and his ability to match up with larger interior linemen, which will be key in a division that includes Dalvin Tomlinson and Akiem Hicks. His weakness will be his second level quickness. Some probably would have rather seen Creed Humphery or Quinn Meinerz at this selection, but Myers fits the bill for the downhill style of play the Packers want to play.

Round 3, Pick 85: WR Amari Rodgers, Clemson

Grade: A

Amari Rodgers fills a major need for Green Bay, who have been looking for a slot receiver since losing Randall Cobb in 2018. Rodgers is close to a Randall Cobb clone as he runs a similar 40-time and is the same height. However, he possesses a larger frame. Rodgers will be a gadget-type receiver for the Packers and should be able to find an immediate role in the Green Bay offense.

Rodgers is a natural route runner who knows how to find the soft spots in a defense. He also has big game experience, playing in multiple National Championship games. Rodgers has dependable hands and drops have not been an issue for him throughout his college career. As a slot receiver, Rodgers needs to work on rising to a challenge at the catch point.

ROUND 4, Pick 142: OT Royce Newman, Mississippi

Grade: B-

If you know anything about the way the Packers draft offensive lineman, it is all about versatility. Newman has started double-digit games at both the guard and tackle position in the SEC. One player he favorably compares to, because of that versatility, is current Packers tackle Billy Turner.

Newman is aggressive, but lacks power. If he does not get all of his block he can get in trouble, especially against quicker defensive ends. Newman projects better as a guard, but would be an excellent depth lineman as a rookie.

ROUND 5, Pick 173: DT Tedarrell Slaton, Florida

Grade: B-

Slaton is a prospect who will do his best work by not showing up on the stat sheet. He fell to the fifth round because he is raw and does not project as a three-down player in the NFL. For Green Bay, this is no problem because they are bringing in Slaton to be a situational run-stuffer. He will do his best work taking up space and opening up things for Kenny Clark, Preston Smith, and Za’Darius Smith to do their work.

Slaton has a strong lower body and is an athlete for his size. He is raw at his position and could have been recruited to play offensive or defensive line coming out of high school. Slaton does need to be better at the point of attack for a player of his size and has a tendency to get blown off his spot.

ROUND 5, Pick 178: CB Shemar Jean-Charles, Appalachian St.

Grade: C

I love when teams acknowledge they have a weakness and double-dip at the position. For Green Bay, they are taking a chance on a prospect who does not fall into their regular height and weight requirements. One of the best things that you can say about Jean-Charles is that he will be a willing special teams contributor.

Jean-Charles has excellent ball skills and anticipation. The competition is not elite at Appalachian St, but he does have tape against some bigger schools, such as their 2019 matchup versus North Carolina. The main issue facing Jean-Charles is his speed. He will struggle to keep up with the fast pace of the NFL and teams could exploit that.

ROUND 6, Pick 214: OT Cole Van Lanen, Wisconsin

Grade: B

The Packers have a process, and though is not perfect, they have continuously found a way to have a top tier offensive line. In addition, Green Bay has built their offensive front more often than not through the late rounds of the draft. Van Lanen is yet another dart throw.

Van Lanen has a lot of weaknesses that you see in late-round linemen. He has decent NFL footwork and is already a capable run-blocker. When it comes to his pass sets, you start to see some of his hip stiffness. His lack of length may hurt him at the next level.

ROUND 6, Pick 220: LB Isaiah McDuffie, Boston College

Grade: C

McDuffie is a safety/linebacker hybrid that trends much closer to a true linebacker. He has solid athleticism and when you watch his Boston College tape, it’s not hard to find him on the defensive side. McDuffie had his best season in 2018, but there is a fear that he may have already hit his ceiling. NFL Draft analyst Joe Marino claims McDuffie makes quick reads, but they are often incorrect. This is another pick that screams special teams contributor.

ROUND 7, Pick 256: RB Kylin Hill, Mississippi St

Grade: A+

I rarely saw Hill mocked past the fifth round and he is exactly the type of running back Green Bay needs to add to this mix. Hill will almost certainly be the third running back on the depth chart and will take the roster spot void created by the departure of Jamaal Williams.

Hill saw a major drop in his stock last season due to Mike Leach coming into Mississippi St, but it allowed him to showcase his versatility as a pass-catcher. Hill does not have blazing speed, but his 4.55 40-time is enough, given the role he is expected to fill.

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