2011 NFL Draft

2012 NFL Draft: Chris Polk Has Legit Chance to Land in First Round

SEATTLE - NOVEMBER 05:  Running back Chris Polk #1 of the Washington Huskies rushes against Terrell Turner #45 of the Oregon Ducks on November 5, 2011 at Husky Stadium in Seattle, Washington. The Ducks defeated the Huskies 34-17. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images
Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IJanuary 2, 2012

A lot of NFL draft experts have the Green Bay Packers grabbing a defensive end at the end of the first round this year, but Washington running back Chris Polk declaring for the draft may change things.

Polk, a junior with the Huskies, basically went ballistic this season, and it's no wonder why he decided to declare. He rushed for 1,488 yards and 12 touchdowns, while adding 332 yards and four touchdowns as a receiver out of the backfield.

A versatile, speedy, powerful, smart runner who can catch passes out of the backfield?

Kinda sounds like someone the Packers would like, doesn't it?

The Packers have gotten by this season thanks to quarterback Aaron Rodgers and his receivers, but the running back situation is murky. Ryan Grant is a veteran and not as good as he used to be, and James Starks has been decent, but not great.

It's hard to imagine a Packers offense complete with a star running back. That kind of balance would be virtually unstoppable. Sure, the Packers have a more immediate need on defense, but they are still Super Bowl favorites this season despite some question marks in that area.

Polk is widely regarded as a top running back prospect, and his versatility would be a great fit for the Packers. The question isn't whether he's a legitimate first-rounder, because he is. The question is, which direction would the Packers go if they had the choice?

Obviously, Polk wouldn't have declared if he didn't think highly of his chances in the NFL draft. You wonder if he was thinking along the lines of ending up with a contender like the Packers.

He's only surpassed by Alabama's Trent Richardson and Lamar Miller of Miami (FL) in my mind.

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