2nd Round Targets: 2016 Draft

Lots of good players left.  Here are the remaining guys who I had ranked as first and second round prospects, roughly listed from top to bottom in positions of need.  I’m pretty confident we’ll get somebody good at #57.

OLB: Emmanuel Ogbah, Myles Jack, Noah Spence  2nd RD: Yannick Ngakoue, Deion Jones, Su’a Cravens

4-3 DEs to switch to OLB: Kevin Dodd, Jonathan Bullard 2nd RD: Shilique Calhoun, Carl Nassib, Charles Tapper

T: Jason Spriggs, 2nd RD: Willie Beavers, Shon Coleman, Le’Raven Clark

NT: A’Shawn Robinson, Jarran Reed, Andrew Billings, Austin Johnson 2nd RD: Hassan Ridgeway, Maliek Collins

DE: 2nd RD: Adolphus Washington, Jihad Ward

RB: Derrick Henry 2nd RD: C.J. Prosise, Kenneth Dixon, Alex Collins

WR: Michael Thomas, 2nd RD: Sterling Shepard, Pharoh Cooper

TE: 2nd RD: Austin Hooper, Hunter Henry, Jerell Adams

CB: Kendall Fuller 2nd RD: Xavien Howard, Mackensie Alexander, Artie Burns

QB: 2nd RD: Dak Prescott, Christian Hackenberg

S: 2nd RD: Vonn Bell, James Bradberry, Tyvis Powell

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Nerd’s PreDraft Roster Analysis 2016

Let’s do this by position.

QB: We’re pretty well set here.  They’ll have a couple more camp arms, one of which will become the developmental guy.  But they’ll probably only carry two on the 53 man roster.

Aaron Rodgers: Could be the best in the league.  Aaron has two major questions hanging over his head.  Is he breaking down due to age?  Is he becoming a diva?  Aaron’s got another year or two in him before he starts to really decline physically.  As for keeping his head together, he’s always had a thin skin.  Aaron needs to prove he can put the team before his own agenda.  If he can do that, we can go all the way this year.

Brett Hundley: Dude made significant progress as a rookie.  He’s being groomed, and Mike loves him.  He needs to maintain that trajectory.  I think he’s gonna be very good.

RB: Questionable depth here.  We assume Eddie’s going to come back and be good again, but there’s no guarantee.  Starks is 30.  Wouldn’t be surprised to see Ted take a guy on day 2.

Eddie Lacy: He’s in kind of a “prove it” type situation this coming year.  Needs to prove he can stay and shape, and he needs to prove he loves the game.  We all know he’s got the skills.

James Starks: Spot duty has kept him healthy, but he’s getting older now.  We all know he can get it done, but when will his skills decline?  Probably has another year or two in him.  Needs to hang onto the ball.

John Crockett: Showed a burst in limited action as a rookie.  If he can pick up pass pro, he could have a future.

FB: Can the Ripper pass protect?  Kuhn could be expendable.

John Kuhn: Currently not actually on the roster, and may not even be back.  But he’s a solid pass protector for Aaron, so he has value.  Can he still get it done at his age?  Probably, but he is in decline.

Aaron Ripkowski: The new FB drafted last year to replace Kuhn. Is he ready to protect Aaron on passing plays?  That’s the only real question.  He can run, catch and pancake people.

WR: None of these guys are really slower than Nelson, but there’s a huge stigma that no one else can get deep.  Personally, I don’t believe it, but the Packers have been looking at speed guys at this position.  Does that mean they’re not sold on Janis?  

Jordy Nelson: The offensive malaise of last year is blamed on not having Jordy.  He needs to prove he is the same despite the knee surgery and being over 30.

Randall Cobb: Cobb is a slash guy that can also run the ball out of the backfield.  Dude is a little undersized, but he is a playmaker.  Can change direction on a dime.

Davante Adams: Needs to prove he can catch the ball consistently.  Also needs to prove he can get deep.   I think he will be fine, everyone was dropping the ball last year.

Ty Montgomery: The offense really struggled when he went down last year.  It’s normally blamed on Jordy, but none of these guys are really any slower than Jordy.  Ty is explosive.  Also a slash dude who can run out of the backfield.

Jared Abbrederis: We all know he can get it done, but he needs to stay healthy. Also should add some muscle to his frame, might keep him healthier.

Jeff Janis: Struggled early last year with over the shoulder catches, but stepped up in the playoffs and showed he had overcome that limitation.  Still needs to learn the playbook, needs to run better routes.  Tons of potential, though.  Size speed developmental guy.

TE: We’ve finally got a guy in Cook who is a legit “deep middle” threat.  Should make everyone better.  I expect depth to emerge from this position.

Jared Cook: Has reputation for questionable hands, but has never worked with a good QB at the pro level.  Has the speed to get deep.  I think he’s gonna be as good as Finley.  Dude can get it done.

Richard Rodgers: Needs to drop some weight.  Proven he can play, but the question is, can he get deep?  I think he’s fine.  He got downfield ok against Detroit last year.

Andrew Quarless: Career journeyman, doesn’t look like he’ll be back.  Had an off field incident last summer.

Kennard Backman: Athletic, can run.  Needs to figure out the playbook.  The Packers hired a brand new TE coach, just to develop this guy.  Very raw.  Needs to take a step.

Justin Perrillo: Slow, kind of an in-line blocking specialist.  Special teamer.

Mitchell Henry: Showed flashes in training camp last year.  Needs to take a step, but should get another shot.

OLINE: We need a swing tackle.  Also, Bulaga needs to show he can get it done.  His knees make him a big question mark.  Sitton and Lang will be free agents after this year.  Will Ted draft a G?

David Bakhtiari: Can get it done, but not great.  Too many penalties.  Could be replaced with a high draft pick, but could he be a swing tackle?  Not sure if he could play on the right side.

Brian Bulaga: Solid tackle, but seems to have lost some lateral movement due to his significant history of knee surgeries.  When Bakhtiari went down last year, they didn’t move him to the left side, even though he’s played well there in the past.  In fact, they tried Barclay, Sitton and finally Tretter over there, but they never moved Bulaga.  Does that mean they don’t think he can get it done on that side?

Josh Sitton: Pro Bowl level G.  Has back issues, but always shows up and always gets it done.

TJ Lang: Another Pro Bowl level G.  Has played T successfully.

Corey Linsley: Came in as a rookie and got it done at C.  Wasn’t quite as good in his second year, will be challenged by Tretter.

JC Tretter: Got it done in limited action at LT last year.  Proved he has a place.  Should challege Linsley for starting C this year.

Lane Taylor: Journeyman G.  If Sitton or Lang leave in FA, he could get a shot.

Josh Walker: Journeyman G. Played some RT last year due to injuries.  Struggled a bit, but got it done.  Needs to make the team as depth. Versatility will help his case.

Don Barclay: Was exposed badly at LT last year.  He was out of position and coming off a major knee injury.  Still, needs to prove he has value.  He’s not the swing tackle.


DLINE: Raji’s retirement leaves a big hole right in the middle.  Moving Datone to OLB creates a hole at end. Fortunately the draft is deep at these positions.  Look for Ted to take at least 2 Dlinemen.

Letroy Guion: Can get it done as a starter, but that’s not the ideal.  Savvy veteran who knows how to play the game.

Mike Pennel: Still raw, needs to be consistent with technique, but he does have the skills necessary to get it done.

Mike Daniels: Undersized, but uses his quickness and tenacity to produce at a borderline Pro Bowl level.  Has emerged as a defensive leader.

Josh Boyd: Journeyman. Adequate depth guy but nothing special.

OLB: This team has always needed a bookend to Clay.  They’ve got a lot of guys who are pretty good, but none other than Clay that are “great.”  Clay is borderline great.  Ted needs to shit or get off the pot at this position.  Get a bookend or go back to a 4-3.  Or a 2-4, if that’s what he wants as his base.  They moved Datone over from the Dline, will probably be a pass rushing specialist.

Clay Matthews: Pro Bowler.  Has demonstrated willingness to move inside to help the team.  I personally feel that Clay needs to prove he can still get it done outside.

Julius Peppers: Veteran leader, picks his spots.  They need to spot him to keep him fresh, but he’s still got the skills.

Mike Neal: Leads the league “almost” sacks.  More of a run stuffing guy.  Tweener who doesn’t really fit our D.  Probably won’t be back.

Nick Perry: Showed in the playoffs that he can get it done at a high level.  The question mark as always is his health.  Also more of a run stuffer/4-3 DE tweener.

Jayrone Elliot: Ted Thompson “gem” who has produced in flashes.  Didn’t get much opportunity this past year, but did make some big plays.  This staff doesn’t always know when they’ve got a good player on their hands, so it will be interesting to see how he emerges.  He’s got the tools.

Datone Jones: They’re finally letting him specialize in doing what he does: getting to the QB.  PROBLEM: They’re moving him to OLB in order to let him do it.  Probably not gonna be great in coverage, but it could be a positive move.

ILB: This has been a glaring weakness for years.  Part of it is Dom’s “scheme” that leaves the middle of the field wide open.  We need someone who can cover.

Sam Barrington: Looked to be a Dez Bishop type guy with possible coverage skills before he went down with the injury.  Needs to prove himself again.

Jake Ryan: Mid round rookie who got the start when Nate Palmer flamed out.  Did ok, needs to build his body in the offseason.  Needs to take the “second year jump.”

Joe Thomas: Seems to be kind of a journeyman, possibly with coverage skills.  This team needs LBs who can cover.

CB: We’ve got some savvy young ball hawks.  But losing Hayward will hurt worse than people realize.  A little more depth here would be nice.

Sam Shields: Dude has the speed and skills, he’s still getting better imo.

Damarius Randall: Stepped up as a rookie.  Needs to take the “step” into year two, but we’re all optimistic.

Quentin Rollins: Also stepped up as a rookie.  His future looks bright, assuming he continues on his present trajectory.

Micah Hyde: Specializes in the slot, because he’s a half step slow.  Backup S, very good depth guy.

LaDarius Gunter: He reminds me of Al Harris.  Big, strong lanky guy with the savvy to get it done, but doesn’t have that top end speed.  Needs to continue to prove himself, but he made the team last year out of nowhere.  Held up last year in limited action.

Demetri Goodson: Converted basketball player who was very raw as a rookie.  Bounced back last year and got it done in limited opportunities.  Failed a urine test, so he’s suspended for 4 games.  Might have been an “Alonzo Harris” moment for him.  Impressed as a gunner on ST.

S: Solid guys here, including Micah Hyde, who I listed as a CB.  

Morgan Burnett: He’s got the skills, and he gets it done, but hasn’t really become elite.

Ha Ha Clinton Dix: Still ascending, good be special.

Chris Banjo: Undersized, but can play.  Special teams ace.

ST: The big question here is the punter.  The small question here is the battle between the long snappers.

Mason Crosby: Still solid, not to jinx him.  Strong leg, not really money with the game on the line, but he gets it done in all sorts of weather.

Tim Masthay: Seems to be slumping.  Should be challenged in TC.

Rick Lovato: Signed off the street when our regular LS went down, filled in well.

Brett Goode: Will be playing musical chairs with Lovato.  Lost his job due to injury to a younger guy.  There’s only room for one of them.

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First Round: Nerd’s Choice (2016 NFL Draft)


UPDATE: 4/27/26, The Packers need DTs moreso than pure NTs.  Raji retired, but they’ve got Guion and Pennell.  Moving Datone to elephant means they have a shortage of DTs, so I’ve weighted my choices more in that direction.  I’d still like a bookend, though.  There’s enough depth at Dline to pick somebody up in a later round.

Jaylon Smith is still my fallback guy.  If all my guys are taken, no one will give us value for a trade back, I don’t hesitate to pull the trigger on Smith despite the recent medical news that he is expected to miss the 2016 season.  Otherwise, look for him in the third.

Of the guys who are likely to be around at #27,I like Noah Spence, Darron Lee, Kevin Dodd, Jarran Reed, Kenny Clark, Andrew Billings, Austin Johnson, Austin Hooper, A’Shawn Robinson, Chris Jones 

Noah Spence: He’s had some youthful indiscretions, but seems to have pulled it together.  He’s also got skills and he can get it done.

Darron Lee: This guy could easily go higher, but if he’s there take him.  We need a bookend.

Kevin Dodd: Another book end type dude.  Could go higher, has versatility as 4/3 DE.

Jarran Reed: This guy can get it done.

Kenny Clark: He’s got skills, but is kind of a “try hard” guy, nothing real flashy, just gets it done.

Andrew Billings: This guy can stuff the run in short yardage.  SO sick of teams knowing they can get short yardage on us.

Austin Johnson: Another NT who could make our ILBs look much better.

Austin Hooper: Can’t ever have enough of these pass catching TEs.  Apparently. I also wouldn’t mind Hunter Henry or Jerell Adams.

A’Shawn Robinson: He’s got skills but gets sloppy with technique.  Takes plays off.

Chris Jones: Doesn’t always play up to ability.  But he’s got plenty of ability.

But generally, any of the guys who are highlighted on my draft board.


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Nerd’s Board: 2016 NFL Draft

I’ve listed these in order of positions of need.  Guys whose names are highlighted are the ones I like in the first round.  I’d like to get one of them if possible, approximately in the order listed, from top to bottom.  I’d probably take a flyer on Jaylon Smith in the 3rd or 4th.

OLB: Leonard FloydEmmanuel OgbahJoey BosaMyles Jack, Noah Spence, Darron Lee/Yannick Ngakoue, Deion Jones, Su’a Cravens // Scooby Wright III(ILB/OLB), Alex McCalister, Dadi Nicolas, Kyler Fackrell, Steve Longa///Victor Ochi, Kamalei CorreaJosh Perry, Joe Schobert, Stephen Weatherly, James Cowser,////Eric Striker, Jordan Jenkins/////Tyrone Holmes, Curt Maggitt (injury sleeper), Theiren Cockran, Silverberry Mouhon, Jimmy Bean

4-3 DEs to switch to OLB: Kevin Dodd, Shaq Lawson, Jonathan Bullard/Shilique CalhounCarl Nassib, Charles Tapper///Bronson Kaufusi////Jason Fanaika

T: Laremy TunsilRonnie StanleyJack ConklinJason Spriggs, Germain Ifedi /Willie BeaversShon ColemanLe’Raven Clark// Caleb Benenoch (sleeper) ///Alex Lewis////Jerald Hawkins/////Tyler Johnstone, Fahn Cooper

NT: A’Shawn Robinson, Jarran ReedKenny Clark, Andrew Billings, Austin Johnson/ Vernon Butler, Hassan Ridgeway, Maliek Collins///Willie Henry, D.J. Reader, Darius Latham,  ////Vincent Valentine/////Antwaun Woods

ILB: Reggie Ragland //Beniquez Brown, Jaylon SmithKentrell Brothers, Josh Forrest, Blake MartinezNick KwiatkoskiNick Vigil///Dominique Alexander(ILB/OLB) ////Antonio Morrison, Cassanova McKinzy, Jared Norris, Zeek Bigger, /////Frank Shannon, Devante Bond (ILB/OLB), Jake Ganus, Terrance Smith (ILB/OLB), James Burgess, Rodney Hardrick, Mason Monheim, Reggie Northrup, Darryl Monroe, Denzel Devall, Joe Walker

DE: DeForest BucknerSheldon Rankins(4-3 guy that doesn’t fit our scheme.) /Adolphus WashingtonJihad Ward//Chris Jones(DE/DT), Bronson Kaufusi, Sheldon Day, Javon Hargrave, Matt Ioannidis,///Quinton Jefferson, Anthony Zettel, Ebuka Onyemata, Ronald Blair/////Lawrence Thomas

TE: /Austin Hooper, Hunter HenryJerell Adams,//Thomas Duarte, Darion Griswold,Tyler Higbee,///Jake McGee,////Nick Vannett, Henry Krieger-Coble, Kyle Carter, Braxton Deaver (injury sleeper),  Jay Rome

TE/Converted WR: ///De’Runnya Wilson, Devon Cajuste/////Billy Freeman

RB: Ezekiel ElliottDerrick Henry/C.J. ProsiseKenneth Dixon, Alex Collins//Jonathan Williams (injury sleeper), D.J. Foster, Marshaun Coprich, Devontae Booker///Keith Marshall, Josh Ferguson, Kenyan Drake (health issues), Daniel Lasco, Paul Perkins////Tyler Ervin, Jordan Howard,Wendell Smallwood/////Peyton Barber, Kelvin Taylor, Aaron Green, Brandon Wilds

G: //Joshua Garnett,Vadal Alexander, Joe Dahl,Rees Odhiambo ///Cody Whitehair, Sebastian Tretola, Matt Hegarty////Christian Westerman, Connor McGovern,Alex Redmond, Ted Karras, Jordan Rigsbee /////Denver Kirkland, Landon Turner, Alex Huettel, Lene Maiava, Jonah Austin

WR: Will FullerMichael ThomasLaquon Treadwell/Corey ColemanJosh DoctsonSterling ShepardPharoh Cooper//Aaron Burbridge, Braxton MillerTyler Boyd,Geronimo Allison, Tajaé Sharpe,///Kolby Listenbee, Jalin Marshall, Charone Peake, Rashard Higgins,Chris Brown (sleeper),Chris Moore,////Malcolm Mitchell, Kenny Lawler, Marquez North,Roger Lewis, Paul McRoberts, Demarcus Robinson (head case sleeper) /////Jaydon Mickens, Jordan Payton, Rashawn Scott, Jay Lee, Ellis Henderson, Devin Fuller

CB: Vernon Hargreaves IIIKendall Fuller,William Jackson,/Xavien HowardEli AppleMackensie AlexanderArtie Burns, //Zack Sanchez,Will Redmond, Eric Murray, Sean Davis, Daryl Worley///Harlan Miller, Deiondre Hall, KeiVarae Russell,D.J. White, ////Maurice Canady, Taveze Calhoun,Corey Tindal, Brian Poole, Kevon Seymour, Fabian Moreau, /////Rashard Robinson (head case sleeper), Lloyd Carrington, Kevin Peterson, Tracy Howard

CB/S Tweeners: Jalen Ramsey //James Bradberry

QB: Carson Wentz, Jared Goff/Dak PrescottChristian HackenbergPaxton Lynch//Cardale Jones, Jacoby BrissettConnor Cook///Kevin Hogan////Brandon Allen, Nate Sudfeld, Matt Johnson, Jeff Driskel, Joel Stave

S: /Vonn Bell, James Bradberry, Tyvis Powell,//Keanu Neal,T.J. Green, K.J. Dillon,/// Sean Davis, Karl Joseph, Darian Thompson, Jeremy Cash, Miles Killebrew, Jalen Mills, DeAndre Houston-Carson, Kevin Byard, A.J. Stamps ////Deon Bush /////Jayron Kearse, Jordan Lucas

P: ////Tom Hackett, Drew Kaser, Drew Meyer, Ethan Perry,/////Alex Kinal, Nick O’Toole, Riley Dixon, Jamie Keehn, Will Monday, Eric Enderson, A.J. Hughes

FB: /////Glenn Gronkowski, Dan Vitale, Derek Watt, Quayvon Hicks

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2015 Playoffs: Division Round

I’ve picked the Packers for the upset this week.

I’ve laid out my thinking elsewhere.  We got blown out against this team in week 16, but that game looked far worse than it really was.  We’ve got some key players back this week.

The Packers were in the game last time until they lost Bulaga at RT.  That’s when the wheels came off.  However even before that, they were Starting with Don Barclay at LT.  That’s a backup G on an island, protecting Aaron Rodgers’ blind side.

Then you factor in the turnovers.  Mike Daniels made a gutty INT in the redzone, but Aaron Rodgers casually lofted the ball right back to the Cardinals, which was at least a 10 point swing.  Then after the half, Starks coughed up the ball on the first play.  It was shortly after that that we lost Bulaga, causing two backup Gs to be inserted at the T positions.  That’s when the wheels really came off.

The biggest factor in this game though, is the re-emergence of Aaron Rodgers.  He wasn’t elite last week, but it was obvious that he was “trying hard” again.  I personally felt that he had been tanking this offense.  Many disagreed with me, but it was obvious that he wasn’t right, whatever was going on.  He seems to have turned the corner on that.

I’m not saying the Packers are going to win tonight.  I did pick them.  But what my analysis is saying is that, they have a chance.  The Packers can hang with this Cardinals team, despite what many people might think.

Losing Davante Adams last week will hurt this week, especially after having already lost Jordy Nelson and the explosive rookie Ty Montgomery.  However I think Abbrederis, who will step up into the #3 WR position, can get it done.

Control time of possession, establish the run, protect the football.  The D should get some turnovers.  Frankly I’m more worried about the offense.  Mike will pull something daring on ST today.  Janis has the ability to break a KO too.  Just move the chains, Aaron!

Aaron said the pressure this week is on the Cardinals, and I agree.  They’re favored, and it’s at their house.  Nobody expects the Packers to win.  They should be able to just go out there and play.



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Wildcard Weekend 2015

I lost alot of respect for Aaron last week.  I felt like he tanked that game on purpose.  Looking back, his last two INTs look suspicious to me as well.

James Jones, wide open down the left sideline.  Aaron holds the ball until he’s covered in the end zone, throws incomplete.  Next play, 3rd down, 20 seconds left.  Aaron throws for 0 yards to Richard “I can’t break a tackle” Rodgers in the middle of the field.  We all know there’s no way he’s gonna get out of bounds, as he was well covered on the play.  Finally he goes down, but now it’s 4th down, can’t spike it.

I don’t care for that kind of bullshit, which is why I’m glad we got rid of Bert Favor.  The Vikings found out all about that.

Hopefully Aaron will stop having a tantrum this week, as it is the playoffs. He had his little tiff against Mike McCarthy, and now he’ll want to compete for a ring, so he will show up and play well.  If he doesn’t this will be ugly.

The Redskins D is vulnerable.  The Packers should be able to light them up in the passing game.  Packers D should hold the Skins under 20 points.  Skins have been playing well, but they haven’t beaten a winning team all year.

Once again David Bakhtiari is OUT for the Packers, and instead of moving Bulaga over to the left side, they’re putting Tretter in there, the backup Center.  Ted has let us down as far as depth at T, and it is showing.  I don’t know why they won’t move Bulaga over to LT as he has done it before and played well, although his movement has been hampered by repeated knee surgeries.

Tretter can move very well, but he will get overwhelmed against powerful bull rushers.  He showed he can get it done on the right side, but protecting Aaron’s blind side is a whole different situation.  He should be able to get out there on screens, but there’s not gonna be a power running game to that side.

I am picking the Packers to win this game, but those are the two big factors: Aaron Rodgers and JC Tretter.  Aaron Rodger is the key, imo.  I also look for the D to come up with some clutch plays, look for some turnovers.

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2015 Week 17 Showdown v Vikings

I’m taking the Packers tonight.

The Vikings have been playing far better than we have, but we played well against them.  Also, last week we looked far worse than we really were.  We turned the ball over a few times, but we still hung with the Cardinals, who I believe is the best team in the NFL, until we lost our only remaining T in the 3rd quarter.

Granted we will probably only have Bulaga tonight, but I think the grass will slow things down a bit for Barclay at LT.  We’ve got some Dlinemen back too, hopefully they’ll Contain Apete.

The main thing I want to see is the Packers remain healthy for the playoffs.  That’s the most important thing today.  Secondarily, win the division.  Thirdly, play well.  We’ve been waiting to see that since about week 5.

Contain Peterson and Bridgewater, get a lead if you can, and force Bridgewater to beat you through the air.  That’s my recipe for success.

The Vikings have a dangerous kick returner in Cordarelle Patterson.  He’s a wild card.  I wouldn’t kick to him. Packers have Jeff Janis returning kickoffs. He can get through a seam and get some yards, but he hasn’t taken one to the house yet.  Packers have Micah Hyde fair catching Punts, he’s not gonna do much there.

Overall I expect the Packers to win this game, but you just never know when they’re going to start spiraling freakishly downward.  That’s been their personality of late.

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