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Point of Veau: Did Thompson Get Fleeced or Is He Smart as a Fox?

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Point of Veau: Did Thompson Get Fleeced or Is He Smart as a Fox?

Packers general manager Ted Thompson. Photo by Corey Behnke of

Conspiracy theorists and the guys that ran might have a beef with the Packers general manager when West Virginia wide receiver Stedman Bailey slipped through Green Bay's fingers, and according to the old trade-value chart, the Packers "lost" each of three trades on Friday.

In our instant analysis podcast last evening, I asked Al Bracco of if he thought the Packers were targeting Bailey with pick number No. 93 overall, a pick originally acquired through a trade backwards with the San Francisco 49ers.

"Absolutely," said Bracco, succinctly.

As we now know, Bailey came off the board exactly one pick before the Packers were set to select, at No. 92 overall to the St. Louis Rams.

Bracco isn't the only one that thought Bailey was the Packers' preference late in the third round. Cheesehead TV's own Zach Kruse mused the following via social media...

When the Packers couldn't land Bailey, they found a familiar face as a trading partner. The Miami Dolphins, led by former Packers assistant Joe Philbin as their head coach, gave the Packers their original fourth rounder (109) an extra fifth rounder (146) and seventh rounder (224).

So what did the Packers lose out on Bailey? Only the best route runner in the entire draft, according to Bracco. Bailey led the nation in receiving touchdowns last season, finding paydirt a whopping 25 times.

According to the old (some would argue antiquated) trade value chart, the Packers got the short end of the deal in their trade with Dolphins, 128 to 111.

They also lost out on both deals to the 49ers too.

When the Packers made their first deal of the night and dropped down from No. 55 overall, they got the 49ers' original second round pick (No. 61) and an extra sixth rounder (No. 173). The trade value chart says the Packers "lost" 350 to 314.2.

The 49ers entered the draft armed with the most selections in the entire NFL at 13, an embarrassment of riches for the NFC's representative in the Super Bowl.

One line of thinking is that the 49ers could afford to give up more than they actually did in their trade with the Packers.

Maybe the 49ers balked at giving up a fifth rounder and the Packers knew they'd get a running back they wanted anyway, if not Eddie Lacy, then Johnathan Franklin or Montee Ball.

Looking at the trade that way, the Packers got something in exchange for nothing. After all, they had only moved back six spots, which wasn't exactly a steep drop.

In their second trade with the 49ers, the Packers traded back from their spot in the third round (No. 88) and got the 49ers' third (No. 93) and an extra seventh rounder (No. 216). Again, the Packers "lost" 150 to 133.

This was the trade that could have resulted in Stedman Bailey, so perhaps the Packers lost in more ways than one.

But in defense of Thompson, maybe "Trader" Ted is smarter than some give him credit for.

According to a Harvard study released in 2011, researachers attempted to update the trade value chart and assign more more realistic and less arbitrary values to draft picks.

If you're to believe the Ivy League study, the Packers were the big winners in all the swapping they did on Friday.

In the first trade with the 49ers, the Packers "won" 185 to 140.2. In the second trade, the Packers "won" 144.2 to 105.3. And finally, the Packers fleeced the Dolphins to the tune of  to 194.4 to 101.1.

It's an interesting dichotomy. If you believe the Packers wanted Stedman Bailey and lost out on the West Virginia wide receiver, you might think Ted Thompson outsmarted himself.

On the other hand, if you like the value that 10 draft choices on Day 3 represents, you might think the Packers are laughing all the way to the bank.

For a team that just signed Aaron Rodgers and Clay Matthews to mega-deals, they're about to get an influx of young, cheap talent.

It's going to be impossible to keep every single player out of a group set to become free agents next season: B.J. Raji, Jermichael Finley, James Jones, Morgan Burnett, Ryan Pickett, Evan Dietrich-Smith, John Kuhn and potentially Sam Shields.

Some of the players the Packers select on Saturday will end up replacing that veteran-laden group listed above.

However, if Stedman Bailey ends up being a Pro Bowler, the criticism might never stop.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (38) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

QOTSA1's picture

I don't think the Packers got fleeced. Would it of been nice if they got more? Sure, but there is still a lot of talent on the board and they have enough picks available that they could trade up again if they wanted.

Kris's picture

In Ted We Trust! Ted has a knack for finding diamonds in the rough, so I'm sure he'll pick up a WR with great potential. Patton, Boyce or Hamilton? Looking forward to another exciting day of the draft. Safety and offensive lineman today? Jordan Rodgers with one of those 7th round picks?

Jamie's picture

I'm sorry, but again, why is everyone pointing to Stedman Bailey as some tipping point for Ted trading out? It's based on nothing factual.

How do we know it wasn't because Marcus Wheaton was gone, or some other player, or no certain player at all?

This is getting worse than the continual Jesse Williams mentions...and we all know how that turned out.

As far as Ted getting fleeced...this comes down to can Ted add or not. He obviously can, and did what he wanted to do in those spots. He wanted out, wanted more picks, said FRICK the chart.

Jersey Al's picture

Actually, it's very much based on something factual (but I can only speak for myself) According to the folks that provide such information to the teams, Packers did "extensive" pre-draft research on Bailey and had him with an early 3rd round grade.

kennypayne's picture

Thanks for providing some facts Al.

If TT gets his man in the 4th he was seeking in the 3rd round fine, but collecting all these low round picks seems like a stretch to me.

I wonder if the giddiness of some Packer fans over the prospect of adding another Ryan Taylor, DJ Smith, Lawrence Guy, Ricky Elmore, or BJ Coleman -- recent 6th/7th round picks, is really warranted.

Morgan Mundane's picture

That's all he can afford. The Packers do not have deep pocket owners. They can only afford so much. You've got two players eating up 40% of the salary cap.

Tarynfor12's picture

40% of the salary cap..seriously?

Time for a new calculator!!

lmills's picture

"deep pocket owners"??? This is a capped salary system. Pocket depth doesn't matter.

some guy's picture

Oh, so "sources" were saying Green Bay had interest in Bailey? Well that settles it then. It's not like teams routinely put out disinformation to muddy the water about their draft plans or anything.

Bearmeat's picture

Bailey would have offset the soon-to-be loss of Jones and probably Finley.

If they don't get a good WR this year, next year it becomes desperate.

Morgan Mundane's picture

Your over thinking this. Thompson gave the farm away to Rogers before the draft. He needed to know just how much he could spend.
He can only afford 5th and 6th rounders. That's what your getting.
Unfortunately our competitors can afford top first, second and third rounders. If in your heart you beleive our 6th rounders can compete with first and second rounders, then be happy.

some guy's picture

The sky is falling! It's all over! Nothing but 5th and 7th rounders stocking the roster from here on out! Team is doomed and would be so much better off if we didn't re-sign Rodgers!

Yeah, so uh... what rounds were Jones and Lacy drafted in, again? Oh, so basically you're freaking out and predicting the downfall of this team because we didn't make a 3rd-round selection this year? Oh.

John's picture

Mundane, you really have no clue. Rodger's deal is big but quite cap friendly.

I you implying we shouldn't have extended Rodgers? sheesh

Bill's picture

I just hope the O-Line gets some help and soon.

redlights's picture

Bearmeat, the Packers have four top receivers: Nelson, Jones, Cobb and Finely. Maybe not all-pro; but 30 other teams salivate at that level of talent. IF Jones and Finley both leave; GB still has talent on the roster that COULD develop and next years draft, as well. Listen to other teams brag about getting a complement to their #1 WR. The thought of having 4 is almost unprecidented.

Mundane, I too, worry about TT overthinking himself. The fact remains that while other teams can afford 1,2 and 3's; GB already have theirs, and just need to fill in the between. I'm not into drinking koolaid, but do like to apply reason.

Overall, ITWT. Go Pack

Johnny's picture

I don't understand how you can write an article on whether or not TT was right or wrong in trading down for more draft picks without a.) knowing whether or not he actually wanted to draft Bailey there b.) not seeing who he selects with the picks he yielded

Chad Toporski's picture

Then no one but GMs should be writing any draft articles, right? Because even the top analysts at sports networks can only work on speculation and incomplete information.

PackRat's picture

Are any OL out there with more potential than Andrew Datko? If I remember correctly, before his shoulder injury he was projected as a first rounder.

Chicago hooligan's picture

Personally I thought TT wanted John Jenkins and then just kept trading down after he was gone.

denniseckersly's picture

stedman bailey can kiss my butt

Sven's picture

LOL... Found that very funny.
The more I look at the packers draft the more satisfied I am with it. Even with the Rodgers signing. What TT does and what most media outlets report seem to always be different. TT has proven time and again that he is an elite GM and leads a group of scouts that are second to none.

Look at the UDFA's from last year. Moses, Barclay, Boykin, that other guy from Vanderbilt, etc. and picking up Harris in a used car lot, c'mon, why doubt his moves? watch and learn.

still chuckling.

al's picture

he smart as a FOX :)

some guy's picture

Oh my god, enough with the freaking draft value chart already. That thing was created 20+ years ago under circumstances different enough from the current NFL as to be irrelevant in any draft, let alone when analyzing one that is considered to be as deep as this year's.

Let's not forget about the financial situation, either. Can anyone think of anything that might have happened to the Packers' cap situation recently that would make having extra 3rd-day (read: really really cheap to sign) picks particularly desirable? I'll give you 3 guesses and the first two don't count.

I love this bit too:

"No clue why #Packers didn't get SF's fifth-rounder in their first trade. That would have almost evened things out on trade chart."

Uhh, maybe because teams don't use that chart any more? Armchair GMs are just too funny sometimes.

JonesMalone's picture

Anyone watch TT's latest presser from the packers website? Maybe the guy has always been very bad at the PR side of things, but he didn't appear to be playing with a full deck. He was a former NFL LB so it's possible his brain isn't what it use to be. I'd hate to think of a post TT era. Now I'm sure it's not like TT is by himself in these draft decisions and the poor guy got jobbed three times over the course of the week, and he couldn't figure out some simple draft value chart right? That being said I feel pretty good about most of the picks. Although the OLB from Illinois state, I couldn't help but laugh when the blood thirsty media made him reccount the story of flying through the air when some one pulled out in front of him on his scooter and how his broken leg healed.

jim's picture

or.....maybe he was just damn tired from experiencing an exhausting pre draft preparation period as well as an exhausting week end of draft activities.... if he were to only be involved with the draft, he would have been exhausted, yet he also had interviews, etc

Nononsense's picture

The thing that made the first trade down bad was the fact that Seattle who picked right after us traded back the same number of spots with Baltimore and got a 5th and 6th round pick in the deal.

I guess it all depends on whos asking for the trade though. If TT called the 49ers wanting to trade down then I understand him settling for the 6th. But if they called TT looking to trade up, he should have gotten a better deal especially since the 9ers were loaded with picks.

The trade happened right after the Bengals took Margus Hunt(which kills me) even before the Titans were off the clock right before GB's pick. Thats what makes me think Hunt was the target at 55 but I could be wrong.

I also think TT got cute and lost out on Stedman Bailey then traded out of the 3rd because of it. That trade with Miami gave the Packers a 4, 5 and a 7 but the 4th rounder was the worst of the three 4th round picks Miami had, meaning they still picked twice in the 4th round before GB got to use the 4th they got in the trade. Got to drive a harder bargain than that TT.

And when is TT ever gonna make a draft trade that results in a higer value future pick like trading this years 3rd rounder for a 2nd next year and a 4th this year? The Patriots seem to be magnets for such deals.

Nick Perry's picture

EXACTLY! The Seahawks got a much better return on their trade with Baltimore than the Packers. Even Rich Esion thought it was a horrible trade, and it was. So we didn't get Baily, but we did get Franklin with the 4th we received in the last trade with Miami. Franklin was a great pick for the Packers. Baily would have be nice but oh well.

cow42's picture

this Packer draft brought to you by the Department of Redundancy Department..

Undersized OL project
Undersized OL project

3 guys with even a chance of helping this team within the next 3 years...


...other than the dudes listed above and Bakhtiari, the rest of their picks could have probably been signed on Sunday.

I HATE this entire draft. Probably better than last year's... but not by much.

i don't want to say this... but i just can't stop myself... so here it goes...



cow42's picture

the talent gap is widening.

Chad Toporski's picture

I would love to get my hands on your crystal ball. Might help me with my stock portfolio.

BubbaOne's picture

Cow's crystal ball had Romney winning.

One of the LB's is reported to play ILB the other OLB.

Fans and pundits wanted TT to address OL, DL and RB. He does so and now that's wrong. BTW- It's reported Bakhtiari may be tried at OC.

One outlet says NT Gilbert Pena (UDFA) is the most underrated players in the draft.

To you the draft must mean bring in players that only have name recognition. And if you're saying only SF drafted better than TT, I'll take that.

I know your response will be (cuz you use it all the time) if I disagree w/ you I'm a TT devotee. I think he does a great job but I do have my issues w/ his drafting.

BubbaOne's picture

Reminder: The Ravens, Pats, Packers, Giants, and Steelers ability to keep winning while dealing w/ the draft order that tries to ensure parity is why they're considered successful orgs. Let's see if SF and Seattle can keep it going for a half decade.

The last for 4 yrs the team is 11-6, 14-6 (SB), 15-2, and 12-6; 52-20 overall, a 722 winning %. Don't forget the team only had 4 winning seasons in the 70's and 80's combined. Fans who aren't enjoying the winning run are idiots.

jim's picture

i found it interesting that pena delayed his college career and potentially his pro career for four years to help his family. speaks loads for his character

jim's picture

redundency, though, does have its place. it wasnt that long ago when the pack picked two offensive tackles in the same draft!!! and, both of them became long-time starters.... clifton and tauscher. tauscher, being a very late round pick, may have been thought to have been a wasted pick, but, history tells us that that isnt true.

playoffs???????'s picture

C'mon man. 2nd guessing is what monday morning QB's do.Packers have Aaron Rodgers and had to keep him, no matter what.To suggest he's getting paid to much is absurd.

Jer's picture

If the Packers were looking specifically for Bailey there, they would not have traded down from the 88 spot where they could have had him. I have a hard time believing they risked a player they really wanted to have for the sake of a 7th round pick.

More likely they looked at their board and saw a lot of players they wanted just as much and decided to take the extra picks.

BrianD's picture

Thanks Jer, for the best comment in this entire thread

Hank Scorpio's picture

I don't believe for one second that TT traded down when there was one guy (and only one) glaringly standing out via the BPA philosophy. Then may have given Steadman Bailey an early 3rd grade but who else still available had a similar grade? I saw lots of pre-draft reports that Johnathan Franklin was highly regarded by the Packers....

The best way to find a player at a given position after day 1 of the draft is to draft two of them. I thought the Packers needed DL, OL, LB, RB, S & WR heading into this draft. They got the DL in round 1, then doubled up on prospects everywhere else except Safety. That's what I call working the draft well. Now, we just have to see which of them can play.

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