Monday, April 20, 2009

Who else is the Pack checking out?

Much of the hubbub surrounding the draft, of course, concerns first round 10 picks especially. But let's face it: most of the players in the league aren't first-rounders. Most starters, let alone backups, come farther down the line. Let's see, what examples might we think of quickly? How 'bout Bart Starr, Brett Favre, Donald Driver, Ray Nitschke, Mark Tauscher, and Greg Jennings, to name just a few. Guess those guys turned out OK.

So, while we discuss who the Packers might take with their #9 pick -- or whether they will trade down -- it might also be helpful to take a look at some of those other players whom the Packers have checked out. Some of these players may be post-draft free agents. Heck, the Packers still have two of those on the roster from last season, WR Brett Swain and LB Danny Lansanah. So, you never know where a gem may arise.

With that in mind, sports writer Tom Silverstein with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, takes a look at some of those players whom the Packers might pull the trigger on during or after the draft.

Among some of the more intriguing possibilities listed:
While you can get the draft scout details via the above individual links, be sure to also check out Silverstein's article about all the prospects the Packers are keeping tabs on. It's a good read. You can find it here.

Thompson's hits and misses
No doubt each Packer fan has his or her own list of Packer GM Ted Thompson's good picks and those that really were...hmmm...not so good shall we say (this is a family blog, after all!).

But if you need some help refreshing your memory, or perhaps adding to either of your lists, the Green Bay Press-Gazette ran an article over the weekend headlined, "The studs and duds of Ted Thompson's Packers drafts". Guess that pretty well says it all, doesn't it?

The article points out that Thompson has selected 43 players in his drafts as Packers GM. Of those, only one -- Nick Collins -- has made the Pro Bowl. Hmmm. And, specifically, the article notes, "Judging each pick by taking into account what the player has contributed, his potential for further growth and where in the draft he was selected, 13 of Thompson’s 43 players should be deemed good picks, while 24 should be called bad picks and for six others (all from last year’s draft), it’s too soon to tell."

For a player-by-player analysis, check out the article here. Whether this gives you hope for this weekend's affair (draft, that is...hey, this is a family blog!) or whether it will once again make you want to throw a shoe at the sight of Ted on draft day (oops...did I say, "once again"?), only you will know.

But in a draft that is seemingly being perceived more and more by pundits as somewhat of a so-so talent pool overall, Thompson's upside and/or downside this time around might not be as steep as in some other drafts. Still, on a team that needs depth particularly across the offensive and defensive lines, you have to hope -- OK, pray too, please! -- that Thompson and his scouts are able to find a few more studs than duds this time around.