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Packers' War Room Awaits Inaugural Draft


Friday evening, John Dorsey, the Green Bay Packers' director of college scouting, sits back in his chair and takes one last call.

For the moment, the room around him is quiet. Empty. By Saturday morning it will be abuzz with activity.

It's the Packers 'War Room.'

From this very room, the Packers will make 11 draft choices this weekend, picks that will affect the organization for years to come.

This room is less than a year old, part of the Packers' new facilities at a renovated Lambeau Field. It's never seen a draft. But it soon will.

The room is oriented to the east wall. Right now all one can see is a curtain. But behind that veil is the Packers' draft board.

At the table facing the board will be Dorsey, GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman, Vice President of Football Operations Mark Hatley and John Schneider, personnel analyst to the GM.

Also among those in the room will be Director of Pro Personnel Reggie McKenzie and Vice President of Player Finance Andrew Brandt.

On the south wall, to the right, is a list of all 32 teams and all 262 draft picks. The grid is empty now, but will fill up quickly as names are transferred off the draft board.

The west wall, the rear of the room, contains the active rosters of every NFL team going into the draft. Players are sorted offensively and defensively, and then by position.

On the north wall, the Packers keep track of their roster and areas they hope to upgrade in the draft.

Packers trainer Pepper Burruss and other members of the medical staff will sit at a table in front of that wall, ready to provide medical information on any draft-eligible player at a moment's notice.

At a table in front of the west wall, Danny Mock, the Packers' college scouting coordinator, will keep in constant contact with Al Treml, the Packers' former video director, who represents the team at NFL Draft headquarters -- the Theatre at Madison Square Garden in New York.

TV's are spread about the room. The one in the southeast corner already displays the Packers' draft status: 28 picks until Green Bay is on the clock.

Just above that TV are two small cameras: one to take pictures for's exclusive Draft Room Cam, the other to capture shots for ESPN.

The TV in the northwest corner is tuned to ESPN, which broadcasts the NFL Draft.

As Dorsey exits the War Room for the night, he passes under a quote from Vince Lombardi that's painted above the door.

It sums up the situation heading into the draft.

It reads: "We know just about everything we want to know about these athletes, except one thing. We don't know how much they want to wear the Green and Gold on Sunday. We don't know if they want to pay the price to be a Green Bay Packer and a Champion. We don't know if they have the heart or the right stuff."

This weekend, from this very room, the Packers will make 11 draft choices. Soon we'll learn their identities. Later we'll find out if they have the heart, the right stuff, to be champions.

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