Sunday, April 19, 2009

Will Pack trade out of #9?

A week from today we'll know what the draft class of 2009 looks like. And the pundits will already be evaluating the picks. Who got a steal or two. Who reached. Who enhanced their team the most. And who blew it.

Where the Packers will come in remains to be seen. If Packers GM Ted Thompson stays true to form -- and why wouldn't he? -- you can expect a few surprises, probably even a reach on a player, and likely some wheeling and dealing to increase the number of picks from the current nine to...who knows?

One of the ideas seemingly building momentum among talking heads is the notion that Thompson might very well trade out of the current #9 spot in order to drop a few slots and gain another pick along the way. Why this should be surprising, I'm not sure. It's been Thompson's style since he's been at the helm. Perhaps it's because the expectation is that with a top 10 pick you're going to get an impact player. But if you read what some of the personnel people around the league are saying, many are pointing out that there's probably not a lot of difference between #1 and #20. Now, whether you buy that or not is up to you. But one thing is for sure: the guaranteed money to a top 10 pick is considerably different than for those after #10. And knowing how miserly Thompson is with money -- not a bad thing in and of itself -- if he sees that he could get the player he wants, or one of the players he wants, by dropping down a few slots and getting an additional pick and saving some money...well, you just know that's what Ted is going to do.

Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Packers beat writer, Bob McGinn (who accurately projected the Packers' 6-10 record before the start of last season, by the way...the guy is good!), has this to say in today's edition of the paper: "Ted Thompson has taken his share of heat for trading down 13 times in his four drafts as general manager of the Green Bay Packers. Unless Thompson has a much stronger conviction than his peers about the offensive and defensive linemen seemingly headed the Packers' way with the No. 9 selection, he should deal back once again and escape the top 10...".

McGinn, like others, makes the point that this draft doesn't really have any sure-fire players. So dropping down in this draft probably makes as much sense as at any time during Thompson's tenure. Thompson always seems to do better in the middle rounds than early, so if he can pick up extra picks there you might as well figure that's what he's going to do. Which means he'll probably stay pat at #9. I'm so-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o confused!

Anyway, as the rumors and scuttlebutt continue this week, keep checking back here at We'll do our best to keep you on top of things.