Brian Gutekunst wants Speed on this Defense

When discussing the Green Bay Packer defense in one of Brian Gutekunst press conferences he didn’t hesitate to answer, “speed,” as need for this defense.  The writing was on the wall for the Linebackers that failed to make impact plays for the packers last season.   Relative Athletic Score or RAS is grade for a players measurements on a scare 1 to 10 scale compare to their peer group.  For Example, Bobby Wagner RAS was 9.39 coming out of Utah State.  Luke Kuechly coming out of Boston college RAS was 10.00.  With Isaiah Simmons at a 9.97 it would be a dream to match up one of the Packers biggest needs with one of the premier payers at the positions to come along, albeit unlikely.

 

Packers Linebackers Lost to Free Agency

The Packers Lost their Starting MLB Blake Martinez to the Giants* in Free Agency.    *See Benn Clubb’s Article here on Blake Martinez signing with the Giants.   http://www.packtothefuture.com/articles/giants-sign-blake-martinez/

Blake Martinez (signed with the Giants) RAS – 6.42

B.J. Goodson (signed with the Browns) RAS – 7.61

What could the Packers do in the draft?

Trade up? to get the High RAS Score guys that have shown the production and talent.  If someone were to put a gun to my head and ask me what position the Packers are looking to pick in Round 1, I would have to say, WR, as this just seems to be a major need with so much talent to choose from its hard to deny the connection early on.  Or with such a deep field this year it might be nice to wait till day 2 for that need.  DL, OT, WR, and Linebacker all seem to be in play for the Packers picks on day 1.  The player Green Bay chooses will be able to chase a QB, keep up with RBs or TE’s in the short or intermediary routes.   They need that player that can cover a RB out in the flat and chase him up on that wheel route.   The running lanes need to be filled quickly and more often than they were this past years, as we all remember how successful the 49ers running game was in the NFC Championship game.  I hope the Packers fall in love with one of the below Linebackers and we go get our guy!  As we know Gutekunst is not shy to trade up or down in the draft so I believe even the Top Linebacker this year in Isaiah Simmons is in play to be drafted, albeit unlikely.  I would even consider 2021 Draft picks in play to go all in this year to try to win now, if there is a guy we just believe is too good to pass up on.  I hope one of these men below are manning the middle for the next 10 years.

 

Isaiah Simmons

Clemson Linebacker

RAS – 9.97

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Isaiah Simmons blew up the combine and Daniel Jeremiah said it best, when he witnessed his 4.39 40 time during the NFL Combine as, “NOT Normal.”   Simmons is projected top 10 player now.  He might be too expensive to go from 30 to top 10,  but I can imagine a rush for teams to make a push for the top 3 or 4 QB’s that will ultimately push some of the rest of the players down the line.  I have even seen Isaiah Simmons go as high as 3rd pick this year, which is basically an unreachable position for the packers to get to.   This is more of a long shot dream scenario for the Packers.  But if the Packers wanted to make a splash this offseason this would do it.

DRAFT CHANCE – less than 3%.

 

Patrick Queen

LSU Middle Linebacker

RAS- 7.95

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Patrick Queen might  go around the middle of the 1st round.   He brings energy to the defense and ultimately makes the entire group better as whole.  This is the player I will bang the table for that Packers have a more realistic chance to draft.   He might picked of one of the best Quarterbacks in this Draft in Tea.  He ran a 4.56 40 yard dash.  He put up 18 reps on the Bench Press.    He plays in the backfield a lot on tape.  Something the packers are really not used to seeing often tackling guys 10-15 yards down field.   The only question I might have with Patrick could be is he might not like to tackle head on as much and might go for arm tackles, swiping at the ankles more often than he might be able to on the next level.  The lower range of RAS score is mainly due to his size grade of Poor.  I bet hes probably above an 8.00 as a Strong nickel type safety.

DRAFT CHANCE – 10 to 15%

Kenneth Murray

Oklahoma Linebacker

RAS – 9.88

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Kenneth Murray Realistically being drafted in the middle of round 1 and may fall to the 20’s where the Packers could have a better of a chance to trade up.   He is the kind of player that you can place in your defense and forget about for the next 10 years.   Strong- with 22 reps on the bench press and fast with 4.52.   With an overall RAS grade of 9.88

DRAFT CHANCE – 10-15%

 

Zack Baun

Wisconsin Linebacker

RAS- 7.82

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Zack Baun was very productive at Wisconsin and is very highly regarded as a consensus top 5 Linebacker in this 2020 NFL DRAFT.   Actually, Bucky Brooks has him as his #2 Linebacker behind Isaiah Simmons.   Zach is not as athletic as the previous 3 featured players but there is a very sold possibility that the Packers take a chance on him early this offseason.    Even though I see The Packers being more likely to have a change to draft this player type and I still put him under a 10% change to be drafted as his athletic profile might be too similar to what we saw last year.

DRAFT CHANCE – <10%

 

Other Notable High RAS scores that might peak the packers interest later in the draft.

 

Carter Coughlin – RAS 9.80

Willie Gay Jr.  – RAS 9.69

Malik Harrison – RAS  9.43

Logan Wilson – RAS 8.81