Grading The Packers 2021 Draft Class

The NFL Draft is a special time for potential players, fans and everyone involved within a teams organization. This is a chance to see your favorite team get new prospects and every team has a chance to improve and make childhood dreams come true. Unfortunately, the NFL Draft was overshadowed by a report from Adam Schefter, saying that Rodgers wants out, which has been the topic of discussion for months. But this report hasn't changed how special Draft Day was for all the players.

Round 1, Pick 29: Eric Stokes, CB, Georgia

Grade: B

Green Bay came into the draft with an obvious need at cornerback, the Packers needed to upgrade that position, and fast. What better way to do that than getting the corner that ran a 4.25 40 yard dash at his pro day? This was a good, but questionable pick, with corners that are more polished and NFL ready than Stokes such as Asante Samuel Jr (Drafted 47 to the Chargers) or Paulson Adebo (Drafted at 76 to the Saints). Nonetheless, Stokes has that rare combination of speed and athleticism that will help him at the NFL level. Packers General Manager Brian Gutekunst spoke on Eric Stokes, saying "As we went through the process today, he was just kind of sticking out like a sore thumb up on our board. Didn’t really think he’d have a chance to get there. Thought when we started there might be an outside chance. As the board fell, and some of the corners went off early, we weren’t really sure he was going to get to us. We were really excited that he did."

Round 2, Pick 62: Josh Myers, C, Ohio St.

Grade: C +

With the departure of All Pro Center Corey Linsley, fans wondered how we would replace him, and some thought that the answer was Jake Hanson, who the Packers drafted in the 6th round in 2020, who spent the season on the Practice Squad. Jake did struggle under center, as he was used to shotgun or pistol formations. So here Green Bay felt they needed an improvement, and selected Josh Myers from Ohio State. While not a bad pick by any means, Green Bay selected Josh over the likes of Creed Humphrey, the Center from Oklahoma, who many thought was the most polished Center in the draft. Josh could've been drafted at a later round as well.

Round 3, Pick 85: Amari Rodgers, WR, Clemson

Grade: A

The talk of the draft, Rodgers is unhappy, he wants out. Green Bay wants to do everything they can to make him happy, and did so by trading up from pick 92 to pick 85 (giving up picks 92 and 135) and got a National Champion, Amari Rodgers. Amari was a pick fans loved, as the Packers needed another receiver after Davante Adams who was consistent and could play as a slot receiver. This was a great pick, as Amari can fill the role that has been needed since Randall Cobb, both on offense and special teams. He has also drawn similarities to Cobb and praise from scouts due to his work ethic. Amari knows what it takes to win, and will do whatever he can to do so.

Round 4, Pick 142: Royce Newman, T/G, Ole Miss

Grade C

Depth isn't bad, especially when it comes to the offensive line, but there were better options at 142. You still had the Safety Jamien Sherwood available, or the Defensive Tackle Daviyon Nixon. Instead of going for depth at other positions, they went back to the offensive line, where they drafted 3 the year prior. Don't get me wrong, Royce isn't a bad player, where he is very solid at pass protection and has a killer mullet, there were just better options at 142.

Round 5, Pick 173: Tedarrell Slaton, DT, Florida

Grade: A

The Packers run defense has been a problem for a few years, and most of it comes from the defensive line. Green Bay extended All Pro Kenny Clark to a 4 year, $70 million deal in 2020, but he needed help on the line, and Dean Lowery or Montravius Adams weren't cutting it. In comes Slaton, a massive defensive tackle who has an extremely rare combination of size and athleticism. Tedarrell was a massive force at Florida, and has the ability to stop the run and plug up the hole. One of the biggest concerns against him, unfortunately is that he doesn't have the stamina to play all 4 downs in the series.

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

Grade: B +

I'm surprised that Shemar dropped this low, especially with the skill set that he has. He was a lockdown corner at Appalachian State, allowing only a 30.4% catch rate against him in 2020, as well as having 27 passes defended and 2 interceptions (2019 and 2020). He will work well in a CB3/CB4 role, taking over Chandon Sullivan's role, and thriving in Joe Barry's defense. Shemar does have issues, such as being overly physical that leads to penalties, as well as struggling against the run, which can be easily fixed. Shemar can also have an increased role in special teams as well.

Round 6, Pick 214: Cole Van Lanen, OG/OT, Wisconsin

Grade: F

Everyone loves the hometown talent story, from Bill Schroder in the '90s to Touchdown Jesus, Jake Kumerow. That doesn't end, with the Packers drafting Green Bay's own, Cole Van Lanen. Cole attended Bay Port High School in Green Bay, grew up loving the Packers, so why did I give this pick an F? Two reasons. Reason one is because he was a projected priority free agent, as well as having a weaker skill set. His ability to play Tackle is put into question, and as one AFC scout said "Yeah, I see him as a guard, too. He's got no length and will get killed by speed rushers if he stays at tackle". The second reason I don't like this pick is because we tripled up at offensive line for the second year in a row. That means some of the picks are expendable and you won't see a few on the team this year.

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

Grade: C +

Isaiah can fill a role on the defense and help solidify our young linebacking core. He plays his position very smartly, and can easily plug up the hole on run plays. He also has a knack at finding the ball carrier, and taking him down. But there are drawbacks, with the questions and his size and pass defense, but could also fit a spot on special teams, like Oren Burks or Ty Summers.

Round 7, Pick 256: Kylin Hill, RB, Mississippi St.

Grade: B +

With the departure of fan favorite, Jamaal Williams, the Packers needed an RB3, and Dexter Williams and Mike Weber will not cut it. We haven't seen enough from Patrick Taylor, but we will during training camp. Kylin in the 7th round is fantastic value, as he was projected to go between the 5th and 7th rounds. He is a powerful runner, not willing to go down and will always fight for his yards.

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