In the run-up to the NFL Draft, we are publishing a weekly “Mailbag” feature here at Cheesehead TV.
If there’s any question you’d like answered, tag your queries with the hashtag #PackersDraft on Twitter.
@BrianCarriveau Donte Moncrief is my favorite WR in the draft, post-rd 1. Can you see him as a for for GB?
— Vince Ostrowski (@VJ_Ostrowski) March 24, 2014
I'd have to agree, Vince, that Donte Moncrief is also one of my favorite wide receivers outside of the first round. He's the total package of both size and speed, which isn't something you see in many players. In a lot of wide receivers, you'll see either short and fast or tall and slow (relative to other elite athletes, of course). Moncrief had the third-fastest 40 time among players at his position at the NFL Combine, clocking in a 4.40 seconds despite being 6' 2" and 221 lbs.
What you also have to like about Moncrief is there's still plenty of room to grow. As a junior entry into the NFL Draft, he's just 21 years old and should benefit from some next-level coaching and quarterback play. During his time at Mississippi, Moncrief never worked with an NFL-caliber quarterback. If he's paired with a QB like Aaron Rodgers and a position coach like Edgar Bennett in his pro career, look out.
— Jeremy Hogan (@Apollo_Tweet) March 24, 2014
From a pure talent standpoint, you could argue that there is a very steep dropoff from North Carolina's Eric Ebron to the next tier of tight ends that includes Texas Tech's Jace Amaro and Washington's Austin Seferian-Jenkins, among others. As a player that averaged over 15 yards per catch last season, there are very few tight ends that offer the receiving threat that Ebron presents. Something you don't hear a lot about are the character concerns that Ebron may or may not possess as suggested by well-connected NFL Draft analyst Tony Pauline in his latest podcast, citing sources that say Ebron is a "high-maintenance" and me-first "primadonna."
The reason don't hear a lot about such concerns is because no coaches or teammates want to go on record talking poorly about someone from their program. It's up to the Packers to determine if these conerns are overrated or if accurate, his talent trumps any baggage he might bring. In many ways, Ebron could very much be a Jermichael Finley clone, from both a talent and personality perspective. For what it's worth, neither Amaro nor Seferian-Jenkins are choir boys either. Both have been suspended in college. More on the safety position in the next question.
— Mark Wellner (@MarkWWellner) March 24, 2014
Sometimes I wonder if the Deone Bucannon questions I receive a self-fulfilling prophecy of being such an outspoken advocate for him. If you're a regular reader of this column of follow me on Twitter, you know that not only do I not think there's a dropoff from Calvin Pryor and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix to Bucannon, I think the Washington State product is the best safety in this year's Draft class. He's the best combination of hard hitter and ballhawk of players at his position, and very worthy of being the first safety off the board, if you ask me.
C.J. Mosley is a very difficult player to get a gauge on because of the injury rumors, which may or may not have merit. Mosley has denied that there are any "red flags," but you wonder whether it could be a situation where if there's smoke, there's fire. You can bet all NFL teams, including the Packers, put Mosley through a thorough medical examination and have access to any X-rays and scans they could possibly want. Only they know the truth. If truly healthy, Mosley is also worth the 21st overall pick in the Draft.
More likely; GB gets Logan Thomas (wants to QB) to be TE (, or Lorenzo Taliaferro (wants to RB) to be the next Kuhn (FB)? #PackersDraft
— Rusty Weise (@RustyWeise) March 18, 2014
My answer to the question, as its stated, is neither. While Packers coach Mike McCarthy seems to enjoy the challenge of developing young quarterbacks, I think there's other options in this year's draft class that don't have the bust potential of Thomas. As a three-year starter at Virginia Tech, Thomas had ample opportunity to improve over the course of his college career and just seemed to stagnate. While he has some impressive physical traits, I think Thomas will continue to struggle at the NFL level.
As for Taliafero, being a late-round or perhaps undrafted prospect, I suppose you can't rule anything out. But I know we have him listed as a running back in our forthcoming NFL Draft guide, and that's where I'd venture to guess he fits in the NFL. At 6' 0" and 229 lbs., Taliafero is on the heavy side but based on his 40 time of 4.58 seconds at the Combine, he would seem to have the speed necessary to stick at halfback.
— A. Rodriguez (@arodwins52) March 24, 2014
Yes, safety is definiltey No. 1 with no clear-cut starter opposite Morgan Burnett, but it's far from the only need in Green Bay. They could also use an upgrade at inside linebacker as A.J. Hawk and Brad Jones just seem to provide a consistently pedestrian level of play.
On the offensive side of the football, the Packers stand to give Aaron Rodgers another weapon on the offensive side of the football, which could come in the form of either a tight end or a wide receiver. And with Evan Dietrich-Smith departing in free agency, center has emerged as a need too.
Brian Carriveau is the author of the book "It's Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America," and editor of Cheesehead TV's "Pro Football Draft Preview." To contact Brian, email [email protected].
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