Packers 2023 NFL Draft: Day 3 Analysis

Analysis on the Packers' day three draft picks. 

Round 4 (116): Colby Wooden, DT, Auburn


6'4 273 lbs, 4.79 40 yd dash, 7.49 3-cone, 4.43 shuttle. 

Career Notes

A 22-year-old Georgia native, Wooden was a redshirt freshman in 2019. A tweener who can play inside and out, he was productive from both spots. By 2022 he played all 12 games for the Tigers, recording 45 stops (11.5 for loss with six sacks), three pass breakups and a team-high three forced fumbles, per

Scouting Report

Defensive line prospect whose steady weight gain and frame development have allowed him to see the game at a variety of alignments. Wooden is at his most disruptive when attacking from the interior. He has a quick first step to attack gaps and threaten the pocket, but he’s unable to sit down and drop a deep anchor against bullies in the run game. Wooden’s activity level and hand skill are the keys to his current and future success -- they allow him to keep pressure on blockers from snap to whistle. High football character and scheme versatility work in Wooden's favor, but he will need to find the right team fit. - Lance Zierlein,

Other Options on the Board

The team missed most of the safeties and defensive tackles who would be plus day 1 starters. After this pick, the next defensive lineman taken was Cameron Young (who has little pass-rush ability) at pick 123. 

Why They Went With Colby Wooden

The team thinks Wooden, who weighed in at 272 lbs at the combine played at closer to 285 last year and can put on even more weight than that in the NFL. He was one of the best interior pass rushers in the SEC over the past few years, if he can put on weight and keep his quickness, he could be a solid improvement over the Dean Lowrys and Jarran Reeds of the world. 

Round 5 (149): Sean Clifford, QB, Penn St.


6'2", 220 pounds, 4.59 40 yard. dash

Career Notes

Clifford started all 13 games in 2021, garnering honorable mention All-Big Ten Conference honors (261-428-61.0%, 3,107 yards, 21 TDs, eight INTs passing; 99-163-1.6, two TDs rushing). He was also a finalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy (also known as the Academic Heisman). Clifford became Penn State's second four-time team captain in 2022, receiving honorable mention all-conference honors again by starting all 13 games (226-351-64.4%, 2,822 yards, 24 TDs, seven INTs, 69-176-2.6, five TDs rushing). He was the Rose Bowl Offensive MVP (16-21-76.2%, 279 yards, two TDs) as well as a finalist for the Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year Award. Clifford set several Penn State career records, including passing yards (10,661) and yards of total offense (11,734).

Scouting Report

Mobile four-year starter with desired NFL intangibles and leadership, but a lack of passing talent. Clifford will have his moments, but he doesn’t consistently deliver the ball with accuracy and timing. His arm strength falls below the mark. - Lance Zierlein,

Other Options on the Board

The most notable options still on the board were Dontayvion Wicks and Karl Brooks, who you will read about shortly. 

Why They Went With Sean Clifford

By all reports, Clifford does not have an NFL arm. Don't expect him to be a Matt Hasslebeck type of back-up who can be traded for picks in a few years. More likely, he was drafted for his ability to help prepare Jordan Love for gameday. 

Round 5 (159): Dontayvion Wicks, WR, Virginia


Height: 6′ 1”  Weight: 206 lbs  Arm Length: 32 3/8”  Hand Size: 10” 40-Yard Dash  4.62  Seconds  10-Yard Split  1.59  Seconds  Vertical Jump  39’’  Broad Jump  10’ 10’’

Career Notes

Dontayvion Wicks, is "quicker than fast", and is the kind of WR where quarterbacks are willing to "stick it in there" knowing he can come down with the catch. I love his special teams ability which we've seen the Packers start to prioritize in more recent years.

Scouting Report

Wicks proved in 2021 that he has a set of skills to threaten defenses with big-play potential, but he’s coming off a disappointing 2022 season. Focus drops have been an issue for him over the last two seasons, but they seemed to impact his overall confidence in 2022. He lacks attention to detail as a route runner but it is worth noting that he finds ways to separate with instincts and pure athleticism. Wicks has talent to cultivate, but gaining the confidence of a GM, head coach or quarterback must start with catching the football more consistently. - Lance Zierlein, 

Other Options on the Board

We're getting into the thinner part of the draft where the other options on the board are guys who will be trivia night answers and not real NFL starters. That said, S Anthony Johnson Jr. from Iowa St. was still on the board and many Packers fans would've been fine taking him in the second to start at safety. (Please note that I legitimately wrote this as it was announced that the Packers drafted Johnson in the 7th round. I'm not changing it.)

Why They Went With Dontayvion Wicks

The theme with this draft is apparently guys who had a great 2021 and then didn't do well in 2022 apparently. Wicks falls into that bucket, he had 1,200 yards and 9 TDs in 2021 and 430 yards and 2 TDs in 2022. Wicks has a high RAS but a bad 40 time. He will need to produce in a James Jones-esqe way with route running and winning on 50/50 balls. 

Round 6 (179): Karl Brooks, DT, Bowling Green


Height: 6′ 3”  Weight: 303 lbs  Arm Length: 32 1/4” Hand Size: 9 1/8” 40-Yard Dash 5.08 Broad Jump 10’ 10’’ 40-Yard Dash 4.58 3-Cone 7.63 Shuttle 5.00 Vertical Jump 26.5"

Career Notes

Brooks was a Pro Football Focus First Team All-American, as the team captain started all 13 of the Falcons' games in 2022. But Brooks can do it all, as he also played wide receiver in high school. He has 48 career starts and that consistency will play nicely at the next level. "He's a blue-collar kid and he's been working really hard," Brooks' high school football coach Johnel Davis. "This young man is just ready to continue to put in work and go after his dreams."

Scouting Report

The inclination to shrug off Brooks’ production based on level of competition -- or because of questions about his positional fit -- might be a mistake. Brooks’ snap quickness, footwork, hand usage and motor are all translatable play qualities. His movement and counters are intuitive, allowing for quick access into the backfield. Against the pass, he frequently beat tackles as a bull rusher off the edge. Brooks has the size of a three-technique but the versatility and athleticism to move around a defensive front. He flashes disruptive, three-down talent as a future starter in a one-gap scheme. - Lance Zierlien,

Other Options on the Board

Do we really care who else was on the board at this point? Do I really need to write this section 6 more times?! Anyway, Tre'Vius Hodges-Tomlinson, a short corner who is Ladanian Tomlinson's nephew and who I took in the third round of several mock draft simulations without having ever watched as much as a Youtube highlight video was still on the board. 

Why They Went With Karl Brooks

You could argue that interior D-line was the Packers' biggest need entering day 3. Brooks was the clear best option to continue to beef up the d line. Interestingly, he is the opposite of a typical Gute pick: great tape and bad measurables. JJ Enagbare was a similar pick in the 5th round last year and was a solid starter by the end of the year.  

Round 6 (207): Anders Carlson, K, Auburn


He's a kicker. 

Career Notes

Carlson’s best year was not 2022. In 2020, Carlson had a 91% FG percentage and missed just one XP, in 2021 he tore his ACL, and in 2022 his FG percentage was just 70.6% (on an admittedly small sample size). Carlson was the team’s kickoff specialist all three years.

Scouting Report

Carlson has made kicks in big moments and appeared to be tracking in a good direction back in 2020. However, he has struggled to establish consistency on mid-range kicks and has been poor on kicks from 50 yards and beyond. He’s had too many kicks blocked during his career and doesn’t sport a booming leg on kickoffs. -Lance Zierlein,

Other Options on the Board

I'll tell you what, the options were a lot worse than when the 49ers took a kicker in the dang third round. 

Why They Went With Anders Carlson

This one is easy, they needed a kicker and Carlson was the clear best kicker available. 

Round 7 (235): Carrington Valentine, CB, Kentucky


HEIGHT: 6’ 0’’ WEIGHT: 193 lbs ARM: 32 1/4’’ HAND: 9 1/4’’

Career Notes

Valentine crossed the border from Ohio to Kentucky after starring in football and basketball at Cincinnati's Archbishop Moeller High School. He played in 10 games with one start as a true freshman (10 tackles, one pass breakup, one forced fumble). Valentine started 12 of 13 games played in 2021 (61 tackles, 1.5 for loss, five pass breakups) and then led the team with 10 pass breakups as a junior (48 tackles, 1.5 for loss, one interception in 12 starts).

NFL Scouting Report

Valentine has the physical traits necessary for the NFL but the instincts and body control to extend his coverage against quality route runners leaves something to be desired. He’s solid at crowding vertical throws and can play press-and-bail, but he has had coverage busts in zone. Also, he bites too easily on double moves. Valentine’s lack of aggression as a run defender could make it tougher for zone teams to give him a chance. - Lance Zierlein,

Other Options on the Board

This was around the time that a puppy peed on Daniel Jeremiah on the broadcast. That oughta give you an idea. 

Why They Went With Carrington Valentine

These late-round corner picks are typically for special teams, Valentine's 4.44 40 at his pro day and 6' 193 lbs stature could make him an ideal special teams player with some level of potential on defense. 

Round 7 (235): Lew Nichols, RB, Central Michigan


Height 5'10 Weight 220 lbs PRO DAY: 40-Yard: 4.61 Bench: 22 3-Cone: 7.43 Shuttle: 4.20 Vertical: 37 Broad: 9.7"

Career Notes

32 games, 3,061 yards, 26 TDs, 5.0 avg, 95.7 ypg, long of 68 yds

Stop me if you've heard this before, Nichols had a great 2021 (when he was one of the best backs in the nation) but his production fell off a lot in 2022 due to injuries. 

Scouting Report

Nichols is a straight-line athlete who is at his best when he goes north and south. He lacks the lateral agility and fluid hips to change direction and make defenders miss and relies on his blocking and power to turn positive plays. While Nichols routinely hit big plays in college, he displayed just above-average top-end speed and oftentimes was caught from behind down the field. In the passing game, Nichols was very productive as a dump-off and leak-out option where he showed a natural ability to catch the ball and make something happen in the open field. He did not show an ability to run routes or be a true difference-maker on third down. Nichols does show a willingness to pass block and has the size to anchor against the rush, but his angles and hand placement need improvement.  - Brentley Weissman, The Draft Network

Other Options on the Board

The Lions selected defensive tackle Brodrick Martin with the 96th pick after trading up. The consensus draft board had Martin ranked 235th, which would have been this pick in the seventh round. 

Why They Went With Lew Nichols

Nichols isn't an incredibly fast back, but he's got size, production history, and will challenge Patrick Taylor for the third RB spot. 

Round 7 (242): Anthony Johnson, Jr., S, Iowa State


Height: 5'11.5" Weight: 205lbs 40-yard dash: 4.54s Vertical jump: 37.5" Broad jump: 10'5" Shuttle: 4.31s 3-cone: 7.07s

Career Notes

Johnson made an immediate impact as a three-star recruit from St. Petersburg, Florida, earning four starts for the Cyclones at cornerback as a true freshman (28 tackles, five pass breakups in 12 appearances). He garnered honorable mention All-Big 12 honors in 2019, tying for the team lead with 10 pass breakups and collecting 60 tackles, seven for loss with two sacks in 13 starts. Johnson received that honor from league coaches again in 2020 (40 tackles, two for loss, five pass breakups in 12 starts) and 2021 (55 tackles, three for loss, four pass breakups, two forced fumbles). He switched from corner to safety to lead the secondary in 2022, starting all 12 games (60 tackles, two interceptions, four pass breakups) to garner second-team all-conference recognition. -- by Chad Reuter

Scouting Report

Cornerback turned safety with good athletic traits for the safety position and rare physicality from a former cornerback. Johnson has grown into a safety’s frame but is versatile enough to play near the line of scrimmage or line up over the slot. He moves fluidly with good play speed but is still processing angles and coverage responsibilities at his new position. He will come downhill and hit anything near the line of scrimmage with everything he’s got, but he needs to learn to control his aggression to become a more consistent tackler. Johnson’s traits, versatility and toughness give him a chance to become a starting safety or nickel safety. - Lance Zierlein,

Why They Went With Anthony Johnson, Jr.

Johnson was high on many draft boards and Cris Collinsworth even mocked him in the first round. He has a cornerback background and developed coverage skills doing that. His weak spots are his sort of slow 4.55 40 time and a lot of missed tackles. His upside is strong starter, but it's unclear whether he'll get that opportunity right away with the Packers--if that's how they viewed him, they would've taken him far earlier. Johnson will be an interesting player to watch. 

Round 7 (256): Grant DuBose, WR, Charlotte


HEIGHT 6’ 2’’ WEIGHT 201 lbs ARM 31 7/8’ HAND 9 1/2’’

Career Notes

DuBose helped his Park Crossing High School football team win four regional championships in the Montgomery, Alabama, area before going to Miles College. He played in 10 games as a reserve in 2019 (8-104-13.0, one TD) and the school did not play football in 2020 due to COVID-19 concerns, so he worked three jobs. Charlotte quarterback James Foster, who also grew up in Montgomery, encouraged DuBose to try out for the 49ers in the summer of 2021. In his first year with Charlotte, he led the team with 62 receptions, 892 receiving yards (14.4 per) and six receiving touchdowns in 12 starts. DuBose topped Charlotte with 63 receptions in 2022 (787 yards, 12.4) and scored a team-high nine TDs in 12 games (11 starts), receiving second-team All-Conference USA accolades. -- by Chad Reuter

Scouting Report

Raw receiving prospect with just two years of major college experience under his belt. DuBose possesses NFL size with an expansive catch radius. He’s talented at winning fade routes and jump balls, but he struggles to win in the early stages of the route against press and tight man coverage. DuBose is still in the learning stages but already displays some route talent. A lack of separation quickness could make his battle for a roster spot more challenging. - Lance Zierlein,

Why They Went With Grant DuBose

With a young QB you need as many weapons as possible. For the second straight year, the team added three wide receivers in the draft. During the season last year, they also added Bo Melton, who fit all of Gute's athleticism requirements. That makes 7 highly athletic young guys (plus two new tight ends) ready to compete to make their mark. 

Mike Price is a lifelong Packers fan who recently moved form Utah to Stoughton (a Madison suberb). You can follow him on twitter at @themikeprice.

NFL Categories: 
3 points

Comments (3)

Fan-Friendly This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.
ImaPayne's picture

April 29, 2023 at 06:20 pm

How do you say "cluster f". That is how I describe this packer draft. Drafting guys who were injured with acls and missed most of the last year why? They werent in demand or high names but we took em.
Drafint guys from div II schools versus div 1 coached up players who were readily available.
This is a horrible draft. Packers fans will suffer this season. There just isnt one game changing player or play maker in the bunch. Sad really but most will come cheap thats for sure.

-5 points
NJMagic's picture

April 29, 2023 at 06:43 pm

Couldn't disagree more strongly. Gute did a great job of marrying BPA to positional needs. Zero issue taking discounts on past ACL injuries.

Beef up D Line - check
Invest in offense - check

Not going to pretend I know better than the scouts watching the tape, but the approach was spot on for what I hoped!

My only quibble is not getting any OT to develop, as next year likely to lose one of both.

Go Pack Go!

2 points
StarrtoRodgers's picture

April 29, 2023 at 08:26 pm

I see no one drafted Bryce Ford-Wheaton 6 foot 3, 220 pound WR out of West Virginia and the Big 12 with the 4.38 Forty yard dash (4th of 43, Reed was 16th, Dubose 34, and Wicks 40th), 1.54 10 yard split (26th, Dubose was 15th, Reed 38th, Wicks 40th) 41 inch vertical jump (1st, Wicks 10th, Dubose 28th, JSN 29th, Reed 37th) , 10 foot 9 inch broad jump (13th, Wicks 9th, Dubose 24th, JSN 25th, Reed 38th), 6.97 3 cone drill (Wheaton-ford 7, JSN 1st, Dubose 3rd), and 4.15 20 yard shuttle (Ford Wheaton 3rd, JSN 1, Reed 10th, Dubose 13th) 4 year player at West Virginia and caught 62 passes this last year.

Although Ford-Wheaton is at the top or near the top of the NFL combine numbers in the 40, the Vertical and Broad Jump, he - nor anyone the Packers picked or have on the roster - is close to Jaxon Smith-Njigba's 3.93 20 yard shuttle or 6.57 3 cone drill.

JSN is probably the most elusive and best route runner of all of the wide receivers - closest thing we have to Davante Adams.

No burners among the 3 receivers the Packers drafted, but Wicks shows some leaping ability and Dubose some agility.

Ford-Wheaton has 1) Size, 2) Speed and 3) Leaping ability but lacks agility - would be straight line speed receiver and leaper like Christian Watson.

Watched the films of the wide receivers - Ford-Wheaton, Dubose, Wicks, and Reed - and Wicks looks the best of them. All look like they will challenge Doubs and Toure and Melton and Cotton and for the 2nd starting position behind Watson or a spot on the roster which says there is NO ALL FUTURE ALL PRO there. No surprise though as of the 28 receivers the Packers drafted from Rodgers first year - 2005 - none were drafted in the 1st round and only Davante Adams (2nd round 53rd pick) made 1st team all Pro (2020 and 2021). Only Davante Adams (2014 2nd round 53rd pick) and Greg Jennings (2006 2nd round 52nd pick) have been selected to the Pro Bowl multiple times, Adams 6 times and Jennings 2 times.

None of these players' film however JUMPS OUT at you like Christian Watson's college tapes did last year or Jaxon Njigba 2021 college tapes. .

Also watched Nichols film - definitely not a speed demon, he patiently waits for his blockers and looks for holes. North south runner, not lateral. I would be surprised if he beat out Taylor or Goodson for a 3rd spot on the roster.

This should be interesting as both and NFL Draft Buzz had about one half of the 9 players the Packers drafted today, not being drafted at all and maybe signed as Undrafted Free Agents.

Below are the 9 Packers picked today, Pick # and where and NFL Draft Buzz felt they would be drafted, if at all. had 4 of the 9 Packer draft choices today as undrafted free agents.

NFL Draft Buzz had 5 of the 9 Packer draft choices today as undrafted free agent and 1 - Anders Carlson- the kicker brother of Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson not listed at all.

1 - 116 Colby Wooden LB, Auburn, Draft Projection Rounds 2-3, NFL Draft Buzz: Pick #111, 3.4 round

2 - 149 Sean Clifford QB, Penn State, Priority Undrafted free agent, NFL Draft Buzz: Pick #482 Undrafted Free Agent - made visit to Green Bay

3 - 159 Dontayvion Wicks, Wide Receiver, Virginia, Draft Projection Round 5, NFL Draft Buzz: Pick #179, 5.5 round - made visit to Green Bay

4- 179 Karl Brooks Defensive Tackle Bowling Green, Draft Projection Rounds 6-7, NFL Draft Buzz: #142, 4.4 round- made visit to Green Bay

5- 207 Anders Carlson Kicker Auburn (last played 2021, ACL tear), Priority Undrafted Free Agent, NFL Draft Buzz: (Not Listed)

6 - 232 Carrington Valentine, CB, Kentucky, Draft Projection Undrafted Priority free agent, NFL Draft Buzz: Pick #259 Undrafted Free Agent

7 - 235, Lew Nichols III, RB, Central Michigan, Draft Projection Undrafted Priority free agent, NFL Draft Buzz: Pick # 292 Undrafted Free Agent - made visit to Green Bay

8- 242, Anthony Johnson Jr., CB, Iowa State Virginia, Round 5, NFL Draft Buzz: #275 Undrafted Free Agent

9 - 256, Grant Dubose, WR, Charlotte, Draft Projection Rounds 6-7, NFL Draft Buzz: #279 Undrafted Free Agent

Based on the 33 players various websites:
Sports Illustrated
Fan Nation
Acme Packing Company
Dariyland Express
CBS Sports
Packers Wire/USA Today
list of college players that have visited the Packers:

# Name College POS HT,WT Buzz Rk Round

1 Michael Mayer Notre Dame TE 6-4, 249 18 0.5
2 Darnell Wright Tennessee OT 6-5, 333 44 0.8
3 Dalton Kincaid Utah TE 6-4, 246 38 0.8
4 Will McDonald IV Iowa State DE 6-4, 239 39 1.1
5 Darnell Washington Georgia TE 6-6, 264 27 1.2
6 Felix Anudike-Uzomah Kansas State DE 6-3, 255 51 1.5
7 Keion White Georgia Tech DL 6-5. 285 48 1.6
8 Hendon Hooker Tennessee QB 6-3. 217 23 1.7
9 Adetomiwa Adebawore Northwestern DL 6-2, 282 52 1.8
10 Tyrique Stevenson Miami CB 6-0, 189 67 2.2
11 Rashee Rice SMU WR 6-1, 204 73 2.3
12 Jammie Robinson Florida State S 5-11, 191 79 2.8
13 Jaquelin Roy LSU DT 6-3, 305 124 2.9
14 Jartavius “Quan” Martin Illinois CB 5-11, 194 118 3.1
15 Karl Brooks Bowling Green DL 6-3, 296 142 3.4
16 Dontayvion Wicks Virginia WR 6-1, 206 179 4.1
17 Josh Whyle Cincinnati TE 6-6, 248 179 4.4
18 Keaton Mitchell East Carolina RB 5-7, 179 138 5.5
19 Atonio Mafi UCLA G 6-4, 329 168 6.7
20 Evan Hull Northwestern RB 5-10, 209 243 7.0
21 Quindell Johnson Memphis S 6-0, 204 258 7.3
22 Jordan Howden Minnesota SAF 5-11, 203 315 7.8
23 Lew Nichols III Central Mich. RB 5-11, 222 274 9.3
24 Tyrus Wheat Miss. State OLB 6-2, 263 315 9.5
25 Ben Sims Baylor TE 6-4, 250 315 10.8
26 Kadeem Telfort UAB OT 6-7, 322 363 11.8
27 Tanner Morgan Minnesota QB 6-0, 204 354 12.1
28 Sean Clifford Penn State QB 6-2, 218 478 12.9
29 Marte Mapu Sacremento State LB 6-3, 217 0 0.0
30 Cole Tucker Nothern Illinois WR 6-2, 195 0.0
31 Ryan Miller Furman WR 6-1, 210 0.0
32 Camren McDonald Florida State TE 6-4, 237 435 0.0
33 Scott Matlock Boise State DL 6-4, 296 0.0
34 Adonicas Sanders Temple WR 6-0, 189 0.0
it looks like Packers are emphasizing Tight End in round 1 and edge rusher and/or defensive lineman in round 2.
TE - 6 (3 in round 1, 1 in round 4 or 5, 2 undrafted free agents)
QB - 3 (1 in round 1 or 2, 2 undrafted free agents)
WR - 5 (1 in round 3, 1 round 5 thru 7, 3 undrafted free agents)
RB - 3 (1 in 5th, 2 undrafted free agents)
OT - 2 (1 in round 1 or 2, 1 undrafted free agent)
G - 1 ( 1 late 4th or 5th)
Total offense = 20
DL = 4 (2 late round 1, 1 mid round 3, 1 undrafted free agent)
DE = 2 (early 2nd round)
DT = 1 (late round 2 or early round 3)
LB = 2 (1 5th round, 1 undrafted free agent)
CB = 1 (3rd round)
SAF = 3 (1 late 2nd, 2 7th round or undrafted free agent)
Total Defense = 13

-4 points