The Green Bay Packers have 10 picks in the upcoming NFL Draft. With those picks, the Packers will look to add depth to their roster at several positions. In particular, cornerback is an immediate need, and this draft class is very deep at the position. In addition, the Packers need depth at wide receiver. This is not because of a current need, but due to the fact that they have zero wide receivers under contract for 2022. Additional positions of need include the defensive and offensive lines, though they do have some depth at those positions already. Of the two, the defensive line needs the most attention. After Kenny Clark and Kingsley Keke, the Packers lack any consistent players. With these things in mind, below is a mock draft conducted using thedraftnetwork.com.
First Round Draft Pick- Christian Barmore: IDL Alabama
As mentioned above, the Packers lack depth on the defensive line. This is most true on the interior of the line. Kenny Clark and Kingsley Keke are both excellent players, but after them there is very little depth. The Packers could add depth and an excellent talent on the line by drafting Christian Barmore in the first round.
Christian Barmore had 9.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks last season, including a dominating performance against Notre Dame in the CFB Playoffs. Barmore had another dominating performance in the National Championship game, where he was named the games defensive MVP. Barmore is a massive player who moves well and packs a lot of power into his movement. He is an excellent pass rusher from the interior, something that the Packers struggled with last season. He is very raw and will require some development. However, playing behind Clark and Keke will provide him with the time he needs, while the lack of depth will also provide him with opportunities to grow.
Second Round Draft Pick- Amari Rodgers: WR Clemson
The Green Bay Packers have a rich history of finding great receivers in the second round. Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, and Davante Adams were all second round selections by the Packers. As mentioned earlier, the Packers do not have a single wide receiver under contract after this season. It is a more long term need than an immediate one. However, Amari Rodgers could fill one immediate need that the Packers have had for years now: return specialist.
As a wide receiver, Rodgers has everything a team could want in a receiver. He is fast, has excellent hand/eye coordination, and is able to find the soft spots in the defense. An incredible athlete, he is projected to be a slot receiver in the NFL, which is another role in which the Packers have some need.
The main challenge in Rodgers’ game is his height. He is quite undersized for a receiver, standing just five foot nine. Due to his size, he is easily brought down by a single defender and struggles to compete for high throws. That being said, he could have an immediate impact on the Packers. Randall Cobb is five foot ten, and Rodgers himself drew comparisons between his game and Cobb’s. If the Packers were able to draft the next Randall Cobb in the second round, it would be an immensely popular move.
Third Round Draft Pick- Olaijah Griffin: CB USC
From an early age, it seemed like Olaigah Griffin was destined for a career in music instead of football. He is the son of rapper Warren G and the nephew of Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre. However, Griffin’s excellence on the football field is propelling him towards a career in football instead. Indeed, the two-year starter at USC has plenty of upside that will make him a good cornerback in the NFL.
As mentioned previously, this year’s class of cornerbacks is exceptionally deep. Griffin may have been a second round pick in any other year, but due to taller backs in the class, is projected to be a third round pick. He has excellent speed to go with above-average fluidity in his movement. Griffin is slightly undersized, but does not back down from bigger opponents, including in the run game. He has explosive closing speed, making him an adequate defender down field.
Griffin’s challenges include his size, which makes it difficult for him to defend high throws to taller receivers. In addition, he needs to improve his physicality early in coverage, as he does not always jam receivers well. Griffin is projected to be a nickel or dime corner in the NFL, a role that the Packers do have need in for this upcoming season.
Fourth Round Draft Pick- Osa Odighizuwa: IDL UCLA
As mentioned earlier, the Packers lack depth on the defensive line. While taking Christian Barmore in Round One provides some depth, the Packers are in need of more than just one player. Osa Odighizuwa is an appealing pick in the fourth round because he projects to be able to play in any position on a 3-4 defensive line.
Osa Odighizuwa is a bit undersized for a typical defensive tackle, standing six foot two and weighing 280 pounds. That being said, he has excellent pass rush abilities that make him an ideal candidate to play defensive end in a 3-4 defense. The Packers have typically lacked production from these spots in the past, and Odighizuwa could greatly improve this facet of the defense. He is incredibly fast off the snap. As a three-time state champion wrestler in high school, he uses his understanding of leverage to get offensive linemen off balance, allowing him to shoot the gaps and get to the passer.
His size, though, does provide challenges for Odighizuwa. Taller offensive linemen are able to get him off balance, which makes him less effective. On a team like the Packers, though, in which there are many capable pass rushers, Odighizuwa will not garner the attention of the opponents’ best blockers. In short, he would be a very nice addition for the Packers.
Fourth Round Draft Pick- Kary Vincent Jr.: CB LSU
The Packers have Jaire Alexander and Kevin King returning. However, beyond them, there is very little depth at the cornerback position. Even with taking a cornerback in the earlier rounds, it is very likely that they will select multiple defensive backs in this year’s draft. With their second fourth round pick, they may look at drafting Kary Vincent Jr., who is looking to continue a long line of successful defensive backs having great NFL careers after leaving LSU.
The main strength in Vincent Jr.’s game is his speed. He is incredibly fast, which combined with his great hands makes him an interception threat on a consistent basis. He is able to pick up coverage assignments quickly, and uses his speed to keep receivers from creating separation.
The downside to his game, however, his is size. As an undersized back, he struggles to break free from blocks and is not very aggressive in run defense. In addition, his lack of size leads him to rely on his speed too much. Instead of reading the offense, he will bank on his ability to cover the field quickly to make plays, sometimes too late.
Vincent Jr. projects to be a nickel back that can contribute right away. The Packers, of course, need depth at the position and having the speedy LSU product would be a great upgrade from last season.
Late Round Draft Picks
- Fifth Round- Marlon Williams: WR UCF
- Fifth Round- Darrick Forrest: S Cincinnati
- Sixth Round- Marco Williams: CB Florida
- Sixth Round- Alaric Jackson: OT Iowa
- Seventh Round- Brandon Smith: WR Iowa
Previous Mock Drafts
FOR MORE GREAT SPORTS CONTENT:
Follow me on Twitter @theotherAdams14 and follow Border Fuel Sports @BorderFuelHQ, and visit our page here. For more Wisconsin Sports content from Border Fuel, follow Wisconsin Sports United on Twitter @WISportsUnited.