After a truly bizarre start to the draft, the Packers continue to confuse and upset fans on day three. Gutekunst makes it abundantly clear we are moving toward LaFleur’s power-run scheme he ran in Tennessee with three straight offensive-linemen in the sixth round.
In the deepest wide receiver in recent memory, the Packers neglect to take even just one. Baffling is the word you’re looking for.
Let’s briefly breakdown the new additions.
Round 5, Pick 30: Kamal Martin, ILB Minnesota
Green Bay stayed put at the end of the fifth to grab an inside-linebacker. Martin was moved around a lot at Minnesota, but he best projects as a run-stuffing thumper in the middle. He has a good frame of 6’3″ and 240lbs.
He likely will not see the field on third-downs, as his pass coverage is fairly abysmal. Martin will benefit from playing alongside Kirksey, as he struggles to disengage from blocks. A hard-hitter, but missed many tackles, especially from shiftier backs.
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Martin said he has been training with new Packers Jordan Love and AJ Dillon for the past four months.
Best case scenario, Martin replaces what we had last year in B.J. Goodson and will contribute on special teams.
Round 6, Pick 13: Jon Runyan Jr., OL Michigan
Perhaps the best pick on day three, Runyan is the son of former All-Pro offensive lineman Jon Runyan Sr.
Runyan was praised for his intelligence and drive, despite not being gifted with premier athletic traits. At Michigan, Runyan was a left tackle, but his short 6’4″ frame projects him to move to guard in the NFL, though he could be a swing tackle in a pinch. Runyan said Green Bay spoke to him about tackle and guard, but he’d be fine anywhere on the field.
Runyan comes from excellent bloodlines and should have picked up a great work ethic and a warrior’s mentality from his father. His father was ranked second dirtiest player by Sports Illustrated in 2006. It appears that may have rubbed off on junior. Runyan has spent this offseason training with former Michigan alum and new teammate Rashan Gary.
We’ll likely see Runyan transition to guard, potentially signifying Elgton Jenkins will take over for Corey Linsley at center. This also may put Lane Taylor on the trade block. Worst case scenario, Runyan turns into a Don Barclay type who moves all over the line when needed.
Round 6, Pick 29: Jake Hanson, C Oregon
Again, the Packers look to reformat the offensive line to best fit LaFleur’s new scheme. Hanson started four years at Oregon, accumulating over 3400 snaps. He’s a durable player and an excellent communicator with good football I.Q.
Hanson is a hard worker, but he may lack the strength and length to anchor against nose-tackles in the NFL. Some have cited Hanson as more of a backup than an ideal starter. He does have the foundation to build upon if he gains lower-body strength, but there’s so work do be done. Green Bay will hope they can perform late round magic on him, as they have in the past with J.C. Tretter, Corey Linsley, and David Bakhtiari.
He appears to fit best as a center. Perhaps the team would rather keep Jenkins at guard, Hanson at center, and Runyan to move in for Turner? I’m honestly not entirely sure how this will all shake out.
Round 6, Pick 30: Simon Stepaniak, OG Indiana
Green Bay hunkers down with back-to-back interior offensive linemen at the end of the sixth.
Stepaniak is a well built, strong player who can deliver highlight reel blocks. While he can manhandle opponents, he’ll be eaten by speed rushes as he lacks lateral quickness.
Check out all the wide receivers the Packers failed to grab here
Stepaniak tore his ACL late last season, and may still be recovering from the injury to start his rookie year.
My best estimate for what the heck is going on in the trenches: Lane Taylor is getting traded, Linsley isn’t returning in 2021, and Billy Turner may be put on notice. Or these guys all become backups and practice squad fodder.
Round 7, Pick 22: Vernon Scott, S TCU
Like Ty Summers last year, the Packers take a TCU player in the seventh.
Round 7, Pick 28: Jonathan Garvin, EDGE Miami
Yep. The Packers did not select a single wide receiver in the draft. Not one. Still, Garvin is a sneaky good pick to close out the draft.
Garvin has great measurables at 6’4″ 263lbs and showed out pretty well at the combine. His explosive first step and long frame make Garvin a high potential pick.
The problem lies in his strength and consistency. He’s only 20 years old, so he has time to fill out his frame, add strength, and become more disciplined. He’ll compete for a spot on the 53.
So there you have it. Green Bay elected to get a run-stuffing linebacker, three offensive linemen, and some developmental upside players. No wide receivers! If there’s anything to take away from this draft, it’s that the LaFleur era is now.