Packer GM Thompson: Building an Unbalanced Team

Jan MandelContributor IJuly 31, 2009

GREEN BAY, WI - MAY 1:  Green Bay Packers players huddle as a team as they participate in practice drills during Green Bay Packers Minicamp at Don Hutson Center on May 1, 2009 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

Over the last 4 yrs. Packer GM Thompson has built an unbalanced team with 50+ draft picks, 3 yrs running the youngest team in the NFL.


 Next yr. will have to deal with 15 free agents, which 7 are starters. Eventually if your young players blossom…they will want to get paid, if you can’t pay them, then all your time & effort was wasted, and your team is out a high draft pick! 

 Some cases the drafts were a total waste and we are out all together. Again this is what happens when your life blood is your draft & how you survive.

 If your going to live by your draft, you need to have more hits IE. game changing, dominate, take over game players, you’ll need 2 or 3 stars to build your team around to make it to the “Big Show”!  How many do we have now…? You need more production from players sooner rather than later which has been the problem with Thompson’s philosophy, few later, and still waiting if ever.


For this reason I have never been a fan of Thompson & his one way only to build a team. 

The teams lack of experienced players, passing on free agency opportunities.

 His missed opportunity for Randy Moss 35 TD’s last 2 yrs for only a fourth round pick was pathetic & plain terrible.  I’ve always wondered about how defenses would of stopped Moss, Driver, Jennings…unreal thought!  That’s why Favre was so pissed off, and started more a rift between him and Thompson.  Favre lobbied heavy with Moss & even offered a cut in his pay to get him if needed. But yet go figure….Thompson was willing to use a 2nd round pick for QB Brohm who ended up being a 3rd string and beaten out by a 7th round pick. Brohm will not have any affect for years if any….what a waste!!!!


So Far Thompson’s top picks 1 through 3 shown below, that are still on the team, didn’t use any 4th round plus picks in my example, because none have been any better than descent, nor have any have become dominate or stand out players.  What to look at, time with team, there production, what kind of players have them become.


1st rd  Rodgers QB, going on 5th yr. – 3 yrs. learned  4th yr. played & produced, except in 4th qt. Believe he will be very good.

1st rd  Hawk  LB– 3 yrs. has been mostly avg. to good, might not even be a starter this yr. according to reports..but not a game changer by any means and a disappointment for a # 5 pick

1st rd  Harrell T– Going on yr. 3 has contributed nothing & we let a very good player in Corey Williams go because of him, will only be a back up at best this yr.

2nd rd J. Nelson WR Traded 1st for more drafts &, going on 2nd yr., a good receiver  with potential that we didn’t need, who might be the 3rd but probably the 4th receiver, nothing special his first yr.


2nd rd Jennings WR, going on 4th yr., except for some games missed has shown value every year and is probably Thompson’ best producing pick so far

2nd rd Brohm QB, going on 2nd yr., was a 3rd string QB last yr. beaten by 7th rd pick Matt Flynn, these picks will not produce anything for a few yrs. at best...maybe...

2nd rd N.Collins FS, going on 5th yr., has played every yr. & shown flashes of All Pro, but has also cost us a few games in his learning process, for years known as hands of stone, for his dropped interceptions he should of had, but took 4 yrs to finally play to his potential

2nd rd Brandon Jackson, going on 3 yrs. hard worker & has played well at times…but sparingly, they were expecting much more

2nd rd Pat Lee CB, going on yr. 2 .…has really done nothing and will at best be a back or maybe in nickel defense

3rd rd James Jones WR, going on 3 yr. had a good rookie yr. but was injured last yr. and will be challenged by Nelson for 3 rd receiver spot, strong with good hands.

3rd rd Aaron Rouse S , going on 3rd yr., played sparingly…but not what as well as they wanted..a who knows player

3rd rd J. Finley TE,  going on 2nd yr. first yr. was a disappointment…but a wait and see


This is why the Packers under Thompson’s reign are 31-33 in 4 yrs. One winning season & coming off the worst drop off in team history from 14-3 & 1 play away from the Super Bowl to 6-10.  They lacked depth, & experience.  Things could have been worse had Rodgers gone down last year…with 2 rookie back ups who looked terrible & didn’t know the system.  Let’s just say Detroit wouldn’t of gone 0-16. 


I am going into year # 5 and still wondering what type of team we will have, after firing half of the coaches, and also changing the defense.  Going into year 6 we will still be rebuilding, and I’ll be wondering why this guy was ever hired as the Packer GM!!!!!!!