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Film Review: Undrafted Free Agents

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Film Review: Undrafted Free Agents

The NFL Draft season isn’t officially over until all the undrafted free agents are signed and rookie minicamp truly begins. The draft, of course, is 7 rounds long and the vast majority of premier players in the league are going to be selected during the three days of the NFL Draft. But Green Bay has had tremendous success finding players throughout undrafted free agency. Players like Sam Shields, Cullen Jenkins, and Tramon Williams were all undrafted free agents.

In 2017 alone 23 different players who played in games for Green Bay were undrafted free agents: Geronimo Allison, Adam Pankey, Lucas Patrick, Lane Taylor, Justin McCray, Joe Callahan, Joe Kerridge, Lenzy Pipkins, Josh Hawkins, Marwin Evans, Jermaine Whitehead, Chris Odom, Donatello Brown, Justin Vogel, LaDarius Gunter, Brett Goode, Kentrell Brice, Michael Clark, Reggie Gilbert, Joe Thomas, Taybor Pepper, Derek Hart, and Emanuel Byrd.

Today I take a look at the 16 undrafted free agents that Green Bay signed and breakdown the tape on each. Please note to see the entire threads, you will need to click on the tweet. I will highlight a few plays below that stood out to me.

Jacob Alsadek - OL

Parris Bennett – LB

Kevin Rader – TE

Tim Boyle – QB

Austin Davis – C

Alex Light – OL

Kyle Meadows – OT

Conor Sheehy – DL

Raven Green – S

Ryan Smith – TE

Greer Martini – LB

Naashon Hughes – Edge

CJ Johnson – Edge

Tyler Lancaster – NT

Filipo Mokofisi – DL

Marcus Porter – LB

Undoubtedly, multiple players on this list will end up on the roster at some point this season. The NFL season is a war of attrition and ultimately players get hurt, resulting in young, inexperienced players trying to fill in where the veterans left off.

Two of my favorite players from this class were Marcus Porter and CJ Johnson. Both are undersized and will need to put on some serious functional strength, likely next offseason. But both are aggressive and have the right mentality to find a niche on special teams and work their way into a lineup over time.

On offense I really liked Ryan Smith at TE and Alex Light at guard. Light will also need to put on weight but he looks the part; with coaching and added strength he has a real chance to make an impact over time, similar to Lane Taylor. Smith and Rader may have the best odds of making the team as the depth chart at tight end isn’t exactly deep.

Overall it wasn’t one of my favorite undrafted free agent classes ever, but it’s a solid group with many having a chance to fight for spots on special teams early in their careers.

In case you missed my breakdowns of all the drafted players, you can find them here:

Jaire Alexander: https://cheeseheadtv.com/blog/film-review-jaire-alexander-131

Josh Jackson & Oren Burks: https://cheeseheadtv.com/blog/film-review-josh-jackson-oren-burks-228

Day 3 Picks: https://cheeseheadtv.com/blog/film-review-packers-draft-day-3-209

__________________________

Andy Herman is an avid Packers fan and season ticket holder. He has graduated from National Football Post's and Sports Management Worldwide's NFL Scouting courses and is the owner of the Pack-A-Day Podcast. Find him on Twitter @sconniesports.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (25) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

bbarryirish's picture

Thanks Andy. Awesome overview. Love the insight Cheesehead TV provides.
Go Pack!

Chuck Farley's picture

Ya thanks Andy, lot of work here. Good job. The qb may be my favorite.

I bleed green more's picture

I loved it I think guys are going to step up this year.

dobber's picture

Between 11 draft picks, a bunch of UDFAs, and players on the roster who haven't shown an ability to get it done, I suspect there will be significant roster turnover this fall...

Bearmeat's picture

Let's hope so. The key players need to get younger and many of the role plaers need to get better.

worztik's picture

DOB... The one thing that the majority of the draft picks and UDFA signing have is height and athleticism... speed too!!! Ya know what they say you can’t teach height! Or do they? Some really big boys coming to camp and I hope they move like hummingbirds!!! 320lb+ hummingbirds!!! ;~€)

Bearmeat's picture

Nice to look at the deep dives on the roster. One or two of these might end up filling a hole on the team in 3 years or so. Thanks!

Handsback's picture

I don't think there will be many spots where a UDFA will make the team. In year's past....not the case.

Minniman's picture

With so many late round draft picks this draft it may be the case this year, but undoubtedly injuries will impact the team somewhere, so there's no harm in taking a closer look at prospects than film and pro-days can give teams

dobber's picture

We just spent the whole off-season complaining that this was a team that lacked talent and was full of JAGs. What does it matter if the guys who can't get it done are 2-4 year vets or rookies who might still grow?

Oppy's picture

Andy,

Did you intentionally find zone-blocking examples of a number of the OL featured here, or did it just turn out that the Packers were definitely targeting ZBS linemen (which would make sense).

wow, Alsadek is both lightening fast to wham the DL for the double and get off to the next level... and the extension he displays in getting to the LB in the first clip is crazy.

MITM's picture

I see a teency bit of Desmond Bishop in whatever film of Parris Bennett i've been able to get a hold of. Bennett and Zaire Franklin (Colts) the 2 LBs from Cuse constantly show up on tape, and I personally think Bennett is the better player even though Franklin got drafted.

Since '61's picture

Alsadek is the only member of this UDFA class who has the size and strength to play in the NFL. The rest were underwhelming to me. Eastern Baptist v. Bellhaven looks like HS football.

The TE Rader may have a shot by default since there is no one else, providing he can block. I think the QB (Boyle) could have a shot at the PS if he has a good camp.

After that I see camp fodder. Thanks, Since '61

flackcatcher's picture

Camp fodder '61, not this year. There is not one UDFA in this group who is a just a guy. In one way or another this group is either speed or strength guys, or both. The kind of players who slip based strictly on the tape. With a new GM and New DC a lot of 2-3 year players will be fighting for their football jobs on an even playing field with this group of UDFA. On the offensive side, the Packers are reverting to big rangy OL and big WR like they had from 2007-2012. There is going to be a lot of change on the bottom third of this roster. It should not surprise anyone if the turnover reaches to the upper half of the roster either.

Since '61's picture

Flak - You could be correct, it's all speculation at this point. I'm basing my post on the author's comments that many of these UDFAs are undersized for their positions plus the fact that many come from little or even unranked programs. I can see 3 maybe 5 of these guys either making the final 53 and/or the PS.

The more competition in camp the better. I will have no problem with turning over the bottom of our current roster. I'm just not as sure as you are that more than 3-5 of these guys will still be there by the end of TC. Thanks, Since '61

flackcatcher's picture

I actually agree you on the overall numbers at the end of TC '61. My point is we are seeing something pretty rare in pro sports, a wide open training camp. Outside of core players and high draft choices, no one's job is safe this year. As you say, it's all speculation at this point. ( I understand were the author is coming from on the size issue. College teams often list their players a inch or two and 20 pounds heavier than they are when playing ball. But a player can't fake quickness or strength on the field. The video does not lie.)

dobber's picture

There are aspects of Alsadek's game that remind me of Lane Taylor...if he were 6'7". I think he's got a shot...but is likely a PS player.

worztik's picture

I think that TT has the team stocked with so many below average players/athletes that we could keep ALL the draft picks and ALL the UDFAs and get rid of their counterparts and we wouldn’t miss a beat!!! I am Soooooo pumped to see the team when BG gets finished that I CAN’T WAIT!!! Just me but, I’m all in for lots of change and new faces... let’s be the BULLIES of the North Central Region!!!!!!!!! Or just our division would be great, too!!! Teams are going to fear the Green and Gold... mark it down!!!!

dobber's picture

I think BG will be ready to restock the roster with his long-shots and projects and will be willing to cut most of TTs long-shots and projects loose.

Samson's picture

Good idea but almost impossible to really know if an UDFA "has it" after one TC.
To change a non-player for another non-player makes little sense.
Here's hoping Gute really has that ability that TT lacked.

dobber's picture

Is there really any way to defend one non-player over any other non-player? Just saying I'd rather have a guy who has a chance to turn into something than someone who has already demonstrated he won't.

For that matter, arguing over non-players seems futile.

Samson's picture

Great analysis .... however ....

I'm hoping none make the final 53. (maybe PS for a few)

Chuck Farley's picture

Normally Mr negative, I like some of these guys a lot. I see speed in some of them and agree with other posters, we got guys some of these could replace. Hope they get a fair chance is all.
Mike plays favorites and tends to play guys he is familiar with and fails to give guys time to show there stuff.
My fave, the qb. Nice footwork, rifle arm with accuracy and size.
Could made hundley and Kiser look bad.

Samson's picture

MM may very well be history after season 2018. -- A clean sweep in GB after season 2017 would have been nice. --- 50-50 may work.

croatpackfan's picture

Andrew, great article. Thank you...

I feel this TC will be much more competitive than it was several past seasons... I do think that very few players are safe bet for 53.

I expect some surprising outcome at right side of the OL, at LB (ILB/OLB), TE, WR and DB...

At the moment it looks like there is a lot of fine young players to fight for not so many roster spots...

It is nice to dream. Hard reality will punch us back at the time of TC and many of our favorite players may be cut down because there will be better options, or some players we were certain that will be Packers may found themselves out of the door...

I can not wait till TC...

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