Every Tuesday between now and the NFL Draft, we’ll take a look around the Internet at what some of the experts are saying about the Packers’ first round prospects. Here’s what they’re saying this week.
- Tyler Eifert – TE – Notre Dame
- Jermichael Finley recently said that his chances of staying with the Packers is 50/50. Jason La Canfora reported that Finley won’t return. If that’s the case, the Packers will be searching for a tight end early in the 2013 NFL Draft. Tyler Eifert distanced himself from Zach Ertz at the Combine.
- Last week: Keenan Allen – WR – California
CBSSports.com (two mock drafts)
- Alec Ogletree – OLB – Georgia (predicted by Rob Rang)
- Analysis: The depth of Green Bay’s offensive line has been sorely tested in 2012 with injuries to former first-round picks Bryan Bulaga and Derek Sherrod. The interior was steadier, especially since Evan Dietrich-Smith took over at center but the Packers’ inability to protect Aaron Rodgers played a critical role in their loss to San Francisco. There is no simpler way to put it: the Packers offensive line lacks toughness and physicality – two of Fluker’s most impressive traits.
- Last week: D.J. Fluker – OT – Alabama
- Arthur Brown – OLB – Kansas State (predicted by Dane Brugler)
- Analysis: For most of the season, it seemed evident that the Packers needed to add more speed on defense and that was never more true than Green Bay’s loss in the playoffs to San Francisco. Brown has a nose for the ball with the position versatility to play inside or outside in the Packers scheme.
- Last week: Arthur Brown – OLB – Kansas State
NFL.com (compiled by David Jeremiah)
- Justin Pugh – OT – Syracuse
- Analysis: Pugh is a very interesting player. His lack of length is a concern, but it wasn’t an issue on tape. He has the potential to play every position on the offense line. Green Bay needs to do a better job of protecting Aaron Rodgers and Pugh would do just that.
SportingNews.com (compiled by Eric Galko)
- Corey Lemonier – OLB – Auburn
- Analysis: Despite drafting Nick Perry in the first round a year ago, the Packers must add pass rushers. Lemonier is a quick-twitch, athletic prospect who could provide the speed-rush threat off the edge that would allow Clay Matthews to have continued success.
Lemonier is a long and projectable athlete who already has a nice outside rip move. He was productive as a junior but saw his play decline as a senior. While his body type is a better fit for 3-4 outside linebacker than 4-3 defensive end, his hip movement appears to be too stiff to make the transition. Lemonier also lacks powerful hands and sometime struggles to turn the corner.
The fact that Lemonier does not quit on plays, and has a good motor, combined with his athletic potential will likely cast him as a second or third rounder, despite serious questions about the translating of his play to the next level.
- Datone Jones – DE – UCLA
- Analysis: Much has been written this offseason already about the Packers lack of “length” on the defensive line (even DL coach Mike Trgovac has commented on it). Datone Jones not only brings the Packers some length, but also some much needed explosiveness currently missing from that spot. At UCLA, Jones played both Defensive Tackle and Defensive End, but wherever he lined up, he was a problem for offensive lines. Jones could be a dynamic five-technique for the Packers (with some added weight), which shouldn’t be a problem on his still-developing frame. Jones established himself as a top NFL prospect with a breakout Senior season, where he racked up 62 tackles, including 19 TFL while also adding 6.5 sacks. Jones is not your edge pass-rusher type, which is fine for a 3-4DE in the Packers’ system, but he does have the right combination of power and speed to force double teams and collapse the pocket against the pass
- Last week: Datone Jones – DE – UCLA