Heading into the 2017 NFL season, the Green Bay Packers were viewed as a serious Super Bowl contender. After starting the season 4-1, that belief grew even more. Unfortunately, superstar quarterback Aaron Rodgers went down with a broken collarbone and the Packers ended up missing the playoffs.
It was an eye-opening season for the Packers. Missing the playoffs without Rodgers showed the Packers just how dependent they have become on their franchise quarterback.
Green Bay decided to make some major changes this offseason for the first time in quite awhile. Dom Capers was fired from his position as defensive coordinator, and general manager Ted Thompson stepped aside as well. New general manager Brian Gutekunst promised change, and he certainly has not disappointed.
Throughout the early stages of free agency, the Packers were much more active than in years past. Green Bay signed both Jimmy Graham and Muhammad Wilkerson, while also releasing wide receiver Jordy Nelson. Gutekunst also brought cornerback Tramon Williams back home to bolster the Packers’ secondary.
Needless to say, fans in Green Bay should be excited to see what their team looks like to open the 2018 season.
Looking ahead at the 2018 NFL Draft, the Packers are going to be interested in beefing up their defense and bolstering their offensive depth. We have already looked at ideal fits for the Packers in the first round, but which prospects would be the best potential fits for the Packers with the No. 45 overall pick?
D.J. Chark, Wide Receiver, LSU
Green Bay could look to take a wide receiver in the second round with Nelson no longer being in town. Davante Adams, Randall Cobb, and Jimmy Graham will be a deadly threesome, but D.J. Chark could be a perfect addition. Chark caught 40 passes for 874 yards and three touchdowns last season at LSU and will be an intriguing name to watch throughout the first couple rounds of the draft.
Ronnie Harrison, Safety, Alabama
Morgan Burnett has left town this offseason, signing with the Pittsburgh Steelers in free agency. Ronnie Harrison is one of the more intriguing safety prospects in the draft and is known for his hard hits. Green Bay may be comfortable with Josh Jones starting at safety, but even if that is the case, Harrison could be excellent depth for the Packers’ secondary.
Mike Hughes, Cornerback, Central Florida
Another position of need is cornerback, which many believe the Packers will address in the first round of the draft. Mike Hughes is a perfect target in the second round if Green Bay takes another position at No. 14. Last season at UCF, Hughes totaled 49 tackles, four interceptions, a defensive touchdown, and 11 defended passes, while receiving a comparison to Bradley Roby from NFL.com.
Billy Price, Offensive Line, Ohio State
Finally, Billy Price would make a lot of sense for the Packers as depth for the offensive line. Green Bay has had quite a few injury issues in recent years on the line and has always struggled with having enough talented depth. Price is projected to go fairly early in the second round, but if he is there at No. 45, the Packers could very well consider taking him.