Skip to main content
Powered by

Inbox: Someone interesting is going to be there at No. 12

A calm and reasoned approach is what builds championships 


Sue from Tomah, WI

Did Baby Hod considerately wait until Papa Hod got back from the combine to officially start walking?

Thankfully, he did. I'm forever grateful to him for holding off a few more days, so dad could be there. The way he's moving, it could be any day now. Good morning!

Dean from Leavenworth, IN

Wes? Is that you Wes? My question, with the proliferation of the Shanahan/McVay offense now including LaFleur in GB and Taylor with the Bengals, will that accelerate the defenses' ability to catch up and shorten the learning curve with the rest of the league?

It is me. I appreciate Spoff handling Tuesday's Inbox, so I didn't have to write Inbox after driving back from Indy. We're back on our normal rotation for the remainder of the week. Teams certainly are going to pay more attention to what those Shanahan/McVay disciples are doing. You'd be foolish not to. However, LaFleur and Taylor are their own men with their own philosophies – no different than how Bill Belichick was coming from the Bill Parcells coaching tree.

Mike from Fort Wayne, IN

Just a comment: I so want to see Kevin King play the entire year and see what his full body of work could mean to our defense!

I think we all want to see that. Talking to Washington cornerback Jordan Miller at the combine, he spoke about King with so much respect and admiration. The guy can play. He just needs to get healthy.

Grant from Port Washington, WI

With the Packers having so many holes, using the best-player-available strategy, and there being so many boom-or-bust prospects in this year's draft, how important is it that we hit on our first-round draft picks?

It's always important to hit on your first-rounders, but this is a draft littered with potential Pro Bowlers. If you're the Packers, you want a couple of those on your roster.

Adam from St. Louis, MO

With a top-heavy class at OLB and our presumed need at the position I'd take the odds that we snag one at 12, or even trade up a couple slots if there's an early run on them. Which of the top prospects that we have a realistic shot at do you think will fit in best with our team and why? Are there any non-OLB prospects that wouldn't surprise you with our first pick? Also, I'm not buying this TE at 12 nonsense the Packers seem to keep getting mocked. Thanks for keeping us all updated.

Someone interesting is going to be there at No. 12. I don't know who it will be, but there are blue-chippers all over the board. I'm still not sure how likely it is the Packers take a tight end in the first round, but T.J. Hockenson and Noah Fant could step in right away and make an immediate impact. That's unique for that position.

Graham from Dartford, UK

Morning! I would like to know your thoughts on the Packers drafting Nasir Adderley? I really enjoyed the piece written about him. I appreciate this is a team being built for the future, and that the team comes before the individual, but we do need a safety. Why not keep it in the family, and draft a good one at the same time?

Adderley would check a lot of boxes. Spoff handled the Adderley story and news conference, but I dropped in to listen to him for a minute – what an engaging, confident young man. Adderley has a great story beyond his last name. This kid had the talent to play at a big school, but maintained his commitment to Delaware even after discovering he was academically eligible to play at a power-five conference school. I respect that.

Dylan from Bozeman, MT

Wow. This free-agent safety class is crazy.

This is also something the Packers must consider. It's shaping up to be an all-timer with neither Landon Collins nor Tyrann Mathieu being tagged.

Cole from Dickeyville, WI

My dream scenario for the draft would be to get Montez Sweat and Brian Burns. Probably won't happen now after their combine performances. Burns and Bush would also be a nice combination I feel is more realistic.

I thought Sweat would be a perfect fit for the Packers at No. 12 before the combine. Barring something unforeseen, I don't know how he falls out of the top 10 now. Burns also had a strong showing. With the extra weight he put on, the Florida State pass rusher reminds me of Leighton Vander Esch, who made a quantum leap up draft boards last year.

Steven from Silver Spring, MD

The draft often analyzes the weight of supposedly undersized edge players such as Brian Burns at LB. Yet history shows that many players overcome their nominal weight with functional strength and the makeup of their frame. Once a player is drafted, are there any disclosure rules as to their measureables? Do the Broncos have to list Von Miller's weight? Given how players prep and "inflate" their measureables for the draft it would be interesting how they maintain those 3-4 years on.

I'm less concerned about weight than I am height. At 6-foot-5, Burns has room to grow into his frame no different than David Bakhtiari and Kyler Fackrell. The problem is if you're a 6-1 or 6-2 pass rusher, the weight room isn't going to change that. The key for Burns is showing he can play at 250. I also like that he's a former basketball player. He has the quickness and finesse to compensate for any strength deficiencies.

Corey from Las Vegas, NV

So I've been wondering why the NFL even has the combine any more. With the Senior Bowl and pro days, what's the point? Especially when you have guys like Murray not participating in all of their position group's drills at the combine, why even have it?

It's valuable to get all of the draft picks in the same location at the same time. It levels the playing field for testing and streamlines the process of physicals for team doctors.

Chris from Winona Lake, IN

In response to Collin from Omaha's question, let's say that you have a prospect that you really like, but he's graded around the 20th pick. Do you take him at No. 12, hope he slips to 30, or make a trade to try and get him around the 20th pick?

I'd take the player at 12 is if he's the only one left with a first-round grade. If there are a few players with top 20 grades, then I'd probably try to trade back a few spots like the Packers did last year before taking Jaire Alexander.

Harry from De Pere, WI

What is the process in which you select Prospect Primers? Are you actually trying to predict "best" players that will be drafted around the Packers' selections?

There are three conditions – we have footage of the player's news conference from the combine, readily available college film for B-roll and an interesting background or story. At least, that's what I'm looking for.

Brian from Springfield, IL

Glad to see Kuhn wanting to retire as a Packer. I was surprised to learn he has the second-most postseason TDs in Packers history. Will he make the Packers HOF?


Charlie from Cameron, NC

If John Kuhn is second all-time for the Packers in the postseason in total TDs (7) and tied for second in rushing TDs (4), who is he behind?

Antonio Freeman (12) and Edgar Bennett (five).

Kyle from Osceola, WI

Kuuuuuuuuhhhhnnnn! What does it technically mean to "retire with the Packers"?

Kuhn will get the chance to answer this question himself during his news conference Thursday, but Green Bay obviously meant enough to him to finish his NFL career with the Packers. It's a popular thing to do. Ryan Longwell, A.J. Hawk, James Jones and Al Harris all retired here after playing elsewhere.

Andy from Kalamazoo, MI

Comments on combine participants suggest the talent pipeline from college to the NFL may be stronger than ever. With the shrinking of high school programs because of safety concerns, is the pipeline from high school to college starting to weaken? When, if ever, do you expect to see meaningful changes in NFL prospects because of what's happening at the prep level?

I don't see it happening anytime soon. There are hundreds of college football programs throughout the country. Even St. Norbert College, a Division III program down the street, had over 100 kids on its roster last year. You might lose a few top-end guys here or there, but the pipeline is still strong. I think it was Eliot Wolf who mentioned a few years ago the endless amount of emails he gets from free agents asking for a workout.

Mike from Mount Prospect, IL

Gentlemen, there's been some negative press on Kyler Murray. Do you think he erred in not working out during the combine? Also, would the negative press have any effect on whether you'd draft him if you needed "The Man"?

If the Cardinals like what they see, nothing else matters.

LeeAnn from Carefree, IN

Insiders, I'm not sure of the difference between free safety and strong safety. Is it primarily where they play on the field or what they do? Which of the two would the Packers have the most need for?

Free safeties often are seen as the ball hawks playing centerfield. Strong safeties spend more time in the box, covering tight ends and slot receivers, and defending the run. The Packers and most NFL teams train their safeties to play both spots.

Jim from Hainesville, IL

The fact that Bart Starr was a 17th-round pick in 1956 sounds hard to imagine, but if you put it into contemporary terms, it's Tom Brady. There were only 12 teams drafting in '56, so while Bart wasn't chosen until the 17th round, he was 200th overall, equal to a mid-sixth rounder currently. Brady was 199th overall. More amazing to me is that the Packers also eventually acquired Willie Davis, who was the 181st pick (Cleveland) in '56.

That's why they play the games…

Bob from Bement, IL

I wish I could ask you to look into your crystal ball and predict what will happen with Clay and Cobb, but I know it is way too early for that (I hope both are back). So, maybe a more logical question is what is Ron Zook doing/going to do? (I always liked him as a coach in college and pros.)

He's already picked up a job coaching the secondary of the AAF's Salt Lake Stallions. As I tweeted a couple days ago, there is only one Ron Zook.

Tom from Wellington, FL

In response to Brian Gutekunst probably not liking the nickname "Gute," may I offer my suggestions of BG the GB GM, or simply BeeGee?

"Gutey" appears to be the preferred nickname based on those who know him best.

Nick from Portland, OR

As fans, all we get in regards to potential draft picks and players is media reports. One day, Polite is the obvious pick at No. 12, the next he's a scrub. Unfortunately, fans can't really do anything but sit there and read the stories written by reporters who frankly, don't actually know. So my question is, how on earth do teams and GMs actually avoid all the noise and drama around the draft and actually focus on the potential of the players?

By staying above it all. Hot takes don't win titles. A calm and reasoned approach is what builds championships.

Kris from Kronenwetter, WI

At what point in the year do the GM and scouting staff review past drafts and analyze what they missed in players who turned out to be NFL stars for other teams? For example, drafting Trevor Davis in 2016 two spots ahead of Tyreek Hill. Thanks for all the hard work you and the staff do.

Personnel departments constantly re-evaluate past drafts and look for indicators of an eventual hidden gem. The comparison you're making is poor, though. More went into the Packers taking Trevor Davis in the fifth round over Hill than merely talent. Hill would've been a first-round pick if it wasn't for off-the-field indiscretions.

Bryce from Westcliffe, CO

How do the Packers get to the Super Bowl? How about copying the Patriots. Their continued success over the years should serve as a template for other teams to follow.

What an earth-shattering idea. I cannot believe someone else hasn't thought of it!

Bryan from Woodstock, IL

Mike mentioned the players would have to give up something major to get rid of the franchise tag. Could going to an 18-game season be a worthy deal? It would seem the networks would make more revenue, which in turn would raise the salary cap and pay the players more. Possible win-win for both sides?

I'm sure owners would love that, but I don't see the NFLPA agreeing to an 18-game season with the emphasis on player safety. Personally, I'd be in favor of a single franchise tag as a means of negotiating a long-term extension with a player. If you don't get a deal done by the following year, then that player becomes an unrestricted free agent.

David from San Francisco, CA

Last year, the Packers traded up nine spots in the first round with the Seahawks. They could easily do this again from pick 30 to 21, which seems possible given the Hawks only have four draft picks and there is a perceived cliff somewhere in the mid-20s. Have Gute and team been asked about their interest in moving up from the 30th pick?

Brian Gutekunst has been asked six ways from Sunday whether he wants to trade up, trade back or trade out. His answer is always the same – we'll see.

Josh from Denver, CO

Do you think the NFL should be doing more to keep game days affordable?

Absolutely, but I also think the Packers are doing their part. Rising ticket prices are a reality of sports and entertainment. Last July, I paid $170 for nosebleed seats to UFC 226 because I felt the experience was worth it. A couple weeks ago, you couldn't get a ticket to the Bucks' beat down of the Timberwolves for less than $100. Ticket costs aren't fun to talk about, but it is part of the process.

John from Green Bay, WI

Who is someone from the journalist/media industry that you run into during the offseason and are in awe of?

At 31 years old, I don't know if I'm in awe of anyone anymore, but Nancy Armour is a columnist I have a great deal of respect for in this business. Her knowledge and ability to intelligently opine across multiple platforms is inspiring. I also think Kevin Clark, Robert Mays and Danny Kelly over at The Ringer do terrific work. The ideas they generate are off the charts.

Tim from Green Bay, WI

Does chili need to have noodles in it?

It does if it's my chili.