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The Packers still have multi-positional players in their defense


Aaron from Monroe, MI

More days pass and no free agents signed to replace holes. Nelson, Randall, and now Burnett. Relying on rookies to replace those BIG shoes? Read articles on about how the Packers will regret paying that much money for Graham and Wilkerson! My stomach hurts, need free agent medicine or something to relieve my worries.

If only there was a Pro Bowl cornerback available, who's beloved inside the Packers' locker room, respected throughout the league and ready to help remedy your advanced condition? Anyone know of someone like that? Good morning!

Jaime from Saltillo, Mexico

Wes, do you see Trevor Davis stepping up to No. 3 WR? He has great speed and could be a deep threat now that Jordy is gone.

There was a time when Jordy Nelson wasn't Jordy Nelson. Trevor Davis has all the tools you could desire in a receiver. He has the type of speed that can destroy a defense down the field. I don't know if Davis, Geronimo Allison, Michael Clark or any of these young guys will be the next guy to emerge as that consistent No. 3 receiver for Aaron Rodgers, but there's only one way to find out. That's one of the competitions to watch this summer.

Burt from Hudson, WI

"Packers don't draft with need in mind..." Isn't it possible that philosophy may change with 'Gute'? Thanks and keep up the great comments.

Gutekunst watched Ted Thompson build a Super Bowl championship team from the ground up with that approach. I'm not saying he's just going to pull out Thompson's manual for the draft and not veer from it. He's going to be his own personnel man, but drafting players with value in mind has served the Packers well over the years.

Jason from Lake View, NY

I believe that our strength next year will be our pass rush. The front line looks like it will be a beast and really could be a nightmare for the opposing offense. Could a beefed up pass rush help improve our secondary if the Packers decide to stay youthful at those positions?


Only the coaches, the personnel department and the walls that surround them know for certain what the vision is for the 2018 Packers at this point. To the untrained eye, it looks like Green Bay is banking on that front to be the lead on defense and understandably so. The Packers have invested a vast amount of resources into that position and have a lot to show for it. They're deep on the d-line and need to put it to use.**

Richard from Yankton, SD

With the amount of people who have left the defense, it feels like a rebuild year to me.

Yeah, well, you know, that's just like, uh, your opinion, man.

Theologos from Athens, Greece

Mike McCarthy has often spoken about the importance of multi-position players. By letting Hyde and Burnett go, can we assume that the Packers don't think that type of player is that important or that the front office doesn't take the head coach's wishes seriously? Or, maybe the GM will look for those kind of versatile players but better than the ones we had?

The Packers still have several multi-positional players in their defense. Josh Jones and Jermaine Whitehead are just two examples of safeties who can play from the slot or in the box. McCarthy said at the combine there always will be room for versatile hybrids in the Packers' defense regardless of the coordinator.

Matt from Hartford, WI

Packers haven't had a true centerfielder since Nick Collins. Our defense with him was second in the league and without him we lost at home to the Giants, and Collins never suited up again. Is there a true centerfielder on this team now, or in the draft?

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. He was that guy in 2016 and can be again if that's where the Packers want to play him in the post-Burnett era. Clinton-Dix is still only 25 years old and one season removed from an All-Pro campaign.

Chuck from Poynette, WI

Maybe this is a little early, but any idea what round pick we will get for Morgan Burnett's contract? Also, do you see us getting compensation for any of our other free agents if they sign somewhere? They all seem like they will be lower level contracts at this point.

This is where I get hazy with the compensatory process because it's based on a net-loss formula in free agency. The Packers signed Jimmy Graham as an unrestricted free agent, so I don't know how that affects what picks the Packers would get in return for Burnett or any other departing free agents.

Daniel from Los Angeles, CA

Although pass rusher seems to be the way to go with the first pick, we can't forget that from last year, Montravius Adams and Biegel hardly played, meaning in 2018 they'll basically be two new rookies we get but with extra experience.

That was the underlying message in the**story I wrote Wednesday on Adams and Biegel**. These are two solid prospects who had their rookie seasons sidetracked by injuries. This offseason will be their chance to show what they can do. I know for a certainty Biegel is eager to make a larger impact in Year 2.

Philip from Fishers, IN

I had the opportunity to watch Michael Clark play in the home game against the Vikings, and saw him make that incredible effort to lay out and make a catch. I also know that he is only 22 with limited football experience. If Janis does not get signed, do you think that Clark will make the roster to replace Janis? It's hard to tell speed on TV but his effort and ball skills seemed like something Gutey and MM can't risk losing on the practice squad.

Clark's talent is legit. What impresses me the most is the self-awareness he's displayed throughout this whole process. Clark is in tune with his natural gifts, but also understands he still has a ways to go to tap into his full potential.

Chris from Minneapolis, MN

By swapping picks with Cleveland, how much value did we realistically gain? My perception is that draft boards really start to diverge around four, with not much consensus over BAP. How likely is it we would get the same guys from either spot?


I think it's a bigger deal than you think, especially in the fourth-round switch. For the second consecutive year, the Packers will have an entire night to consider who they want to pick at the start of day three. That's valuable.**

Brian from Cranford, NJ

I keep on having deja vu from 2009. Do you think or would it be a great idea for the Packers stay at 14, use their multiple picks later in the draft to get back in the first round to get another position of need like CB or EDGE that they didn't get at 14 like they did in '09?

Thompson only traded back into the first round once, but it changed the course of Packers history. Who knows how April 26 turns out, but I'll have a wry smile on my face if history repeats itself once again.

Dan from Stockton, CA

I'm intrigued by the addition of DeShone Kizer. Yes, he had 22 interceptions compared to only 11 touchdown passes, but he's a much better fit in the Packer system. Why was Cleveland so quick to give up on him? I thought Hue Jackson was a "quarterback whisperer"?

New GMs often want their own guys and it's pretty apparent the Browns will take a quarterback at either No. 1 or No. 4. This also gives Kizer a fresh start after what has to be considered one of the most difficult predicaments a rookie quarterback has been thrust into for an entire season.

Matt from Plover, WI

The Cousins situation is continuing to prove how important quarterbacks are in this league. Nothing against Cousins, but it shows that you don't need to be considered an elite quarterback to set the market.

It's not who's the best, it's who's available.

Tim from Upland, CA

When speaking of a team's available cap space, does anyone factor in the amount that has to be paid for players drafted in this year's draft? With 12 picks in this draft, how much do the Packers need to set aside for these contracts? Do players entering the draft already have agents?

Yes, but only the top 51 contracts count towards the salary cap right now. Let's say the rookie salary pool for 2018 is $8 million. Only half might actually count towards the cap right now depending on the roster. Yes, almost all draft hopefuls have agents.

Jon from Naperville, IL

As a DC, Dom Capers was fascinated by utilizing multiple safeties in sub-packages. I get the appeal - to better matchup with the opponent's personnel. However, dominant defenses typically do less schematically and let their best 11-12 beat you at their game.

I wouldn't say Capers was fascinated with using multiple safeties in sub-packages. I just think he was playing the cards he was dealt. Injuries forced Green Bay to go pretty deep into its cornerback depth chart the past two seasons.

Josh from Minneapolis, MN

With the new CBA there is substantially less time to get rookies up to speed, which has slightly reduced the value of draft picks in my opinion. The Patriots have been trading their draft picks for players who can get up to speed much faster. Do you see this being a trend moving forward?

Perhaps, but you still need draft picks to build a roster. If your 53-man roster is based solely on veterans, you're going to get old – and sometimes broke – quick.

Bill from Wilmington, DE

Are all the coaches in Green Bay now? Are they breaking down film and players performances while the free agency frenzy is on? Or are the facilities off limit this time of year?

The coaches take vacation like any other walk of life, but generally are in Green Bay year-round. I'm sure there's probably more emphasis on that this year with all the new pieces.

Al from Green Bay, WI

I have just assumed that the "emergency punter" on any team would be the kicker. So, who would you judge to be the better punter - Mason Crosby or Aaron Rodgers? Any other candidates on the Packers' roster?

Crosby. Richard Rodgers was pretty good at it, too, from what I recall.

Roger from Du Quoin, IL

I know there is a need at cornerback. How big are you on Harold Landry? Is he a reach at 14? He was a beast in college. I'm really high on this player.

Great player with prototypical size for the position. It wouldn't surprise me if Landry landed in the first round, but I haven't seen any mocks that have him going inside the Top 15 at this point. That could change.

Brenton from Burlington, IA

How do you think Sam Shields will do in Los Angeles?

I hope he stays healthy and I hope he plays well.

Erik from Madison, WI

I'll bet you a beer Morgan Burnett goes to the Pro Bowl this year. Wanna bet?

Gambling is illegal in the Inbox, sir, and I never slice.

Dave from Germantown, TN

I guess your Prospect Primers are based partly on who you can get to interview but why don't you do primers on names that the Packers might actually draft like Josh Jackson, Marcus Davenport and Mike Hughes?

We have another month until the draft, Dave. I promise they're coming.

Wesley from Market Weighton, UK

If any Packers player, coach or scout came into your office to ask you to help them write their book, who would you like it to be?

James Campen.

Dave from Franklin, WI

If a player is signed to the practice squad, then is later signed to the active roster, does he resume his original rookie contract or is it a new deal?

FDR. New deal.

Ricardo from Monterrey, Mexico

Do you believe it is possible to remodel Lambeau Field in the next few years? I mean, if we ever want to host a Super Bowl they must convert Lambeau Field in to a dome. What are your thoughts on this?

It'll never happen. That would be like painting over the Mona Lisa.

Keith from Dearborn, MI

Wes, Cousineau's beard took three years to grow. How long would it take you to grow a beard to that length?

Another 30 years.

Keith from Normal, IL

Mike answered this but I never got a response from you. I was curious what you had at Steak N Shake during the combine?

Banana malt, double cheeseburger and fries. I salivate just thinking about it.

Kyle from Jenison, MI

Lambeau Crawlers > flying stadium canopy > mausoleum. What's been your biggest surprise of parenting so far, Wes?

How much it changes your perspective on everything.

Paul from Oshkosh, WI

Do you insiders have a separate inbox that you use to communicate with your coworkers? Or are emails from others in the office hopelessly buried beneath a massive tide of angst?

Yeah, the Inbox submissions are filtered to a folder myself, Spoff and Vic (when he was here) share. If it wasn't for that, I'd get motion sickness from all the questions coming in.

Craig from Perth, United Kingdom

If the No. 0 was still allowed, could the Packers give it to Ty Montgomery and then he is free to play any position without you guys constantly fielding questions about it? Apologies. I couldn't resist.

Now there's an idea.

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