The impending loss of future first-ballot Hall of Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers will make an impact on the structure and fluidity of the Green Bay Packers, that much is certain.
The open questions, however, circle around replacement Jordan Love and his ability to fill what could be a gaping hole in the offensive scheme of the team. That’s why the team’s NFL Draft picks this year will likely feature at least one well-regarded quarterback among the team’s first few picks.
Rumors have been floating about that UCLA’s Dorian Thompson-Robinson could be the man the team is targeting as the insurance policy for a failed Love.
“I think it would be nice to have someone who has some experience,” Current Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst recently said, regarding his expectations from a new backup. “We have a lot of respect for Danny (Etling) and what he’s done and would be very comfortable with him in the two spot, but I think we’ll look at a lot of different options. Back when Aaron took over in 2008, I think it was Brian Brohm and Matt Flynn who we drafted that year and they were our backups. So I think we’ll kind of see how that works itself out.”
Thompson-Robinson is a 23-year-old projected to be drafted between the sixth and eighth rounds. He has nearly five years as a starter and is regarded as someone who could step on to a team and, from day one, be a solid backup. In his time with the Bruins, he amassed 10,945 passing yards, generated 88 touchdowns and got picked just 36 times. He also has almost 2,000 career rushing yards, which is a testament to his speed, agility, and his ability to think on his feet.
Scouts have soured on his long-term NFL starter potential, pointing to his smallish size at 6-foot-2, 203 lbs. and lack of elite-level arm strength.
On the plus side, though, scouts regard him as an accurate passer with good instincts when it comes to ball placement. He’s a plus scrambler with the speed and athleticism to turn a busted play into yardage. His presence gives a team options that a more flat-footed quarterback wouldn’t be able to provide. His added experience also gives him a maturity that many of the other high-end quarterbacks won’t have coming out of college, something that would be attractive to a team looking for an immediate field-ready backup, like the Packers this coming season.
It’s a lock that the Green Bay Packers will pick up a quarterback in this year’s NFL Draft. Thompson-Robinson seems like a logical selection for this team as the insurance to Jordan Love, but, also, as a player who won’t force them to use a valuable first or second round pick to acquire.