It’s been less than a week since the Green Bay Packers won Super Bowl XLV but players and fans alike are already looking to accomplish another goal: a repeat as Super Bowl champions.
With Ted Thompson keeping the core of the team intact and a flood of veterans returning from the Injured Reserve, the biggest obstacle in front of Title Town’s champions is the looming threat of a lockout if no Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) is reached before the start of training camp.
So, to take our minds off of what would be the biggest disappointment in sports history, let’s try to focus on something positive and talk about another weapon at Ted Thompson’s disposal that will solidify the Packers as one of the NFL’s most dangerous and exciting teams: the NFL Draft.
The Packers finally get to pick last in this year’s draft and should be able to base their entire draft off of building for the future because they just don’t have any serious holes to fill.
They will, however, need to replace a few players, due to contract issues and possibly durability concerns.
Players likely to be lost include receiver James Jones, running back Brandon Jackson, guards Daryn Colledge and Jason Spitz, linebacker AJ Hawk, safety Atari Bigby, and possibly even defensive end Cullen Jenkins.
Of the list Ted Thompson will be able to retain about three players. Bigby and Spitz are the least likely to return due to the emergence of Charlie Peprah and Morgan Burnett, and Spitz’s lack of value.
Otherwise, it’s anyone’s guess how the rest of the contract negotiations will pan out.
Due to the current nature of CBA negotiations the draft in April could take place before most free agency moves are made, so this mock draft will be based on the possibility that some or all unrestricted free agents won’t have deals completed.