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2016 NFL Draft Grade: Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers Draft Class27th overall:


Green Bay Packers Draft Class

27th overall: Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA

48th overall: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana

88th overall: Kyler Fackrell, OLB, Utah State

131st overall: Blake Martinez, ILB, Stanford

137th overall: Dean Lowry, DE, Northwestern

163rd overall: Trevor Davis, WR, California

200th overall: Kyle Murphy, OT, Stanford

In classic Packers fashion Ted Thompson stayed quiet in free agency and didn’t even consider moving up in the draft. Green Bay simply waited for their pick and took the best player available. Clark is a nice big centre piece for a defense. With the retirement of BJ Raji, and already being thin on the inside of their 3-4 front, it made total sense for the Packers to pick him at the end of the first round. He is an incredibly strong player a powerful initial punch that will probably force more double teams onto him than offenses would like – and that allows the linebackers to go to work. Speaking of linebackers, once again Green Bay ducked “conventional wisdom” to take an inside linebacker early. It’s clear that the Packers don’t value that position as highly as others and are happy with Clay Matthews playing on the inside now. Many people expected Myles Jack or Reggie Ragland to come off the board here but a big physical interior lineman will help protect Matthews and allow him to make more plays. On the other side of the ball it was imperative that they do better protecting Aaron Rodgers. Yes their line was beset with injuries in 2015 but even when healthy they weren’t fantastic so adding Jason Spriggs – who could have easily gone at the end of the first round – is a nice addition to their edge protection group. Kyler Fackrell was added to the Packers stable of edge rushers, and while his long frame and athleticism is perfect for the position his technique – particularly with his hands – isn’t so hot, but every coaching staff would back themselves to improve that aspect of his play and he could be a good rotational player for Green Bay right away. The same goes for Blake Martinez on the inside; his potential is there if the coaches can get to work with him and refine his reads and technique against blocks. For the Packers this draft class should be one that restocks the cupboard and keeps them a competitive team moving forward. Grade: B+

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Toby Durant

A passionate and opinionated writer, I am currently the NFL editor for RealSport. However, I also contribute to F1, WWE, Football, and other sections of the site, and I have covered the NFL International Series for RealSport and previously contributed to SB Nation.

 

I also have 10 years playing and coaching experience in American football, starting at the University of Nottingham and including a stint as defensive coordinator at Oxford Brookes University. I may be a Patriots fan but all aspects of the sport interest me, from guard play to special teams.

2016 NFL Draft Grade: Green Bay Packers

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