Packers close ‘13 draft going heavy at receiver, linebacker « Ol' Bag of Donuts

Packers close ‘13 draft going heavy at receiver, linebacker

With their final five picks of the 2013 NFL Draft, the Green Bay Packers opted for a fairly simple approach.

Reinforce the front seven and add depth at wide receiver. No, literally, that was it.

A defensive tackle, two linebackers and two wideouts comprised the rest of Green Bay’s draft Saturday.

We’ll discuss these picks in the order they occurred.

With their second fifth round pick (167th overall, 34th of the round), the Packers tabbed Mississippi State defensive tackle Josh Boyd. At 6-feet, 3-inches, 312 pounds, Boyd likely projects as a 3-4 end in Green Bay. He had a big 2011 season (eight tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks) before falling off quite a bit in 2012 (just 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks). Still, he’s a hard-nosed defender with good burst off the line who should be an asset against the run. That’s important as ends Ryan Pickett and C.J. Wilson are free agents after this season.

The Packers targeted outside linebacker with their next pick, the 25th pick of round six (193rd overall), by selecting Illinois State’s Nate Palmer. Palmer, 6-feet, 3-inches and 240 pounds, recorded 17 sacks over his final two seasons in college. He was drafted as a linebacker but played defensive end in college. Hard to find a ton of information of Palmer, but it sounds like he’ll be in the mix for a backup spot at OLB. That’s a good thing because, as of now, Dezman Moses is really the only backup OLB on Green Bay’s roster.

After fans spent most of day two and day three clamoring for a wide receiver of some sort, Ted Thompson finally obliged.

He used Green Bay’s first two seventh-round picks (it had three total) on the position. The first of those two picks was Grand Valley State’s Charles Johnson (10th pick of the round, 216th overall). Johnson is 6-feet, 2-inches and 215 pounds. He turned in a monster pro day in early March, highlighted by his 4.38 and 4.39 40 times and 39 1/2 inch vertical. In two years at GVSU (GLIAC represent!), he totaled 128 catches for 2,229 yards and 31 touchdowns.

One drawback: GVSU was the third college Johnson had attended. He left his first school, Eastern Kentucky, after being suspended (reasons unknown). He then spent a year, 2008, at Antelope Valley Community College in California (no, you read that right – that’s a real place). After taking 2009 off completely, he spent his final three college years at Grand Valley (redshirting in 2010). So yeah, that’s a tad troubling. But his skill set and collegiate production could make him a real find for the Packers.

The second of Green Bay’s two wideout selections – 18th pick of round seven, 224 overall – was Maryland’s Kevin Dorsey. Dorsey, 6-feet, 2-inches and 207 pounds, had only 18 catches for 311 yards and four scores in 2012. But it sounds like Maryland’s quarterback play was atrocious last year, so maybe you can’t blame him too much for the lack of production. He’s got good size, good hands and decent quickness. He’s not a great route-runner, though, and has trouble gaining separation from corners. A project, for sure.

The Packers capped off the draft by selecting another outside linebacker, South Florida’s Sam Barrington, with the 26th pick of the seventh round (232nd overall). Barrington had 80 tackles (6.5 for loss), three sacks and two forced fumbles in 2012. Barrington was drafted at outside linebacker, but at 6-feet, 1-inch and 246 pounds, you wonder if he wouldn’t be a better fit inside (Desmond Bishop, for example, is 6-feet, 2-inches and 238 pounds).

Okay, that wraps up our coverage of Green Bay’s selections. We’ll be back in a couple days to put a nice bow on the draft. And there’ll absolutely be a draft recap podcast over at the Packers Talk Radio Network, as well. Thanks for hanging out with us this weekend, gang.

-Chris Lempesis

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