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Packers collecting young defensive linemen

Posted Apr 27, 2013

DL Coach Mike Trgovac talks about fitting them in

GREEN BAY—Packers Defensive Line Coach Mike Trgovac continues to get young talent to mold.

The Packers added their fourth defensive lineman in the last two drafts when they selected Mississippi State’s Josh Boyd late in the fifth round, with the 167th overall pick, on Saturday. The selection of Boyd came two days after the Packers used their first-round pick on UCLA defensive end Datone Jones.

“I think we’ve added two good players to that group,” Trgovac said. “We got longer and we got some good size inside there.”

Trgovac said he first noticed Boyd last year, when he was scouting Fletcher Cox on Mississippi State’s game tapes. Boyd (6-3, 310) played next to Cox, who was drafted in the first round by Philadelphia in 2012.

“I noticed a big kid with some explosion to him,” Trgovac said. “He’s got some pop. For a big man, he’s got some movement to him.”

Boyd was more productive playing alongside Cox, as Boyd recorded 4½ sacks in 2011. The sack total dropped to just 1½ last year, as Boyd said more defenses “keyed” on him.

“There was a lot of competition, and we’d push each other to be better,” Boyd said of playing with Cox. “We’d see who could make the most plays in a game. He helped me become a better overall worker.”

Boyd played mostly defensive tackle in Mississippi State’s 4-3 alignment. Trgovac said the Packers will see if he fits better as a defensive end or nose tackle in Dom Capers’ 3-4.

“We’ll see whether we can get some nose reps out of him,” Trgovac said. “Particularly in this defense, there’s a lot of projections, because you don’t get to see guys play in this defense in their college schemes.”

The exception, according to Trgovac, was Jones.

“His defenses were our defenses,” Trgovac said. “We see him fitting in everywhere.”

At 6-4, 283, Jones brings height and length to the defensive end position that the Packers haven’t had. Trgovac said Jones’ measurables combined with his strength can disrupt a quarterback’s passing lanes in a way other pass rushers can’t.

“He’s a really well-built guy,” Trgovac said. “In my experience with that body type and that position, he can get bigger, but we don’t need him to get too much bigger. He’s plenty strong enough. When he punches and gets his hands in there, he’s plenty strong.”


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