The 2023 NFL Draft is over and now begins off-season programs for all 32 teams. Green Bay made multiple trades on day two and ended the draft with 13 picks. Overall, I thought the Packers had a solid draft and addressed most of their needs. Now that we know who will be in the green and gold, here are my three overall takeaways from Green Bay’s draft.
Picking Two Tight Ends Friday Was Really Smart
It was obvious tight end was one of Green Bay’s biggest needs going into the draft. I kept thinking over the course of the last week if there was a chance the Packers would grab multiple tight ends early. It seemed apparent they would take multiple in general, but how long in between?
The Packers did just that. They selected Oregon State tight end Luke Musgrave with pick 42 and then took Tucker Kraft out of South Dakota State with pick 78. That is almost best case scenario. Musgrave is one of top tight ends in this class with his ability to break open and become vertical threat down the middle of the field. Kraft is a little more raw but has the ability to do that and be an H-back as well. I though Gute and the rest of the team nailed this on day two.
The Packers Didn’t Reach For Weak Position Groups
You could argue that Sean Clifford at pick 149 was a reach and I would agree with that. I think Green Bay could have gotten Clifford later or an un-drafted free agent. However, a quarterback (or at least a backup) wasn’t a huge need.
Going into the draft, offensive line and safety were seen as weak position groups. There were some good offensive linemen early in round one. The first safety taken was Brian Branch and he didn’t go until pick 45 to Detroit. The Packers felt the same way and they didn’t draft a safety until pick 242 with Anthony Johnson Jr.
Green Bay also trusts the offensive line group they currently have. As they should. They spent a lot of draft capital over the last fours years and they believed this wasn’t the year to take one. They will have to address safety still. I like the value of Johnson Jr, but they will have to get a veteran to step in and play this year. With two first round picks in 2024, this could be a the time to address that if it’s a strong safety class.
Green Bay Nailed The First Two Days
I wanted Jaxon Smith-Njigba at pick 13 Thursday and he was there. At the end, Green Bay passed on him and took Lukas Van Ness. Van Ness was in my group of players to take at pick 13. He screamed Green Bay Packer and has all the physical tools and potential to be a great edge rusher. Edge is also a premium position and when you have the chance to take a good one early, you don’t pass that up.
I already mentioned the two tight ends so I won’t get into that anymore. The other day two pick was Michigan State receiver Jayden Reed. I thought Reed would be an early day three pick, but I still liked the pick. The more film that came out after the pick showed he’s a good slot receiver who looks polished. The Packers needed a slot receiver and I believe they got a good one.
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