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Upgrading the Packers Fifty-Three: Part IV- Second and Third Round Draft Prospects

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Upgrading the Packers Fifty-Three: Part IV- Second and Third Round Draft Prospects

As we get closer to deciding which two teams will represent the NFL on Super Sunday, we move deeper into our preliminary draft coverage of which college prospects will be wearing the Green and Gold next season, trying to help the Green Bay Packers get back to their winning ways.  This year's draft will see the Green Bay Packers pick three times in the first forty-four selections, which makes it imperative that Brian Gutekunst and his staff maximize their draft capital.  This year's college prospects fit what the Packers need to rebuild their roster because there is tremendous value throughout the draft in many of the positions that they were deficient in last season.

It will be interesting to see what direction Brian Gutekunst decides to take the Packers in the second and third rounds of the draft.  I would not be opposed to Gutekunst trading down in the second round to acquire an additional third-round pick or using his third round, and one of the fourth round picks to trade back into the second round.  

In this edition of "Upgrading the Packers Fifty-Three", I will highlight twelve more prospects that the Packers could find on their big board with the 44th and 75th picks in the draft.  The Packers second round selection could see some of the last few prospects that I highlighted on Monday still on their big board since the Packers could potentially be selecting at 32 and 44.  

The Packers second round selection could present Gutekunst and his staff with a potentially tough decision to make as they could find themselves with another premium edge defender on their big board with a first-round grade. If this is the case, it could make the process of selecting their second-round pick one of the more pivotal ones of this year's draft.  With this in mind, I could potentially foresee Brian Gutekunst using his third and extra fourth-round picks to move back into the second round to address another positional need with a high valued prospect.     

Packers 2nd Round Draft Prospects:

  • Jaylon Ferguson*: Louisiana Tech, Edge Defender 
  • Oshane Ximinies*: Old Dominion, Edge Defender
  • Chase Winovich*: Michigan, Edge Defender
  • Beau Benzschawel: Wisconsin, Offensive Guard
  • Greg Gaines: Washington, Defensive Interior
  • Terrone Prescod: North Carolina St., Offensive Guard

Candidates that the Packers Could Select if They Traded Down:

  • Beau Benzschawel: Wisconsin, Offensive Guard
  • Terrone Prescod: North Carolina St., Offensive Guard
  • Greg Gaines: Washington, Defensive Interior

Candidates that the Packers Could Trade up to Acquire:

  • Since there are four potential back of the first to early second round prospects that could potentially fall to the 44th spot, I would hold off on trading up in the second round unless there is a "can't miss" player on the Packers big board who has inexplicably fallen.

Best Valued Selection(s):

  • Jaylon Ferguson: Louisana Tech, Edge Defender
  • Oshane Ximinies: Old Dominion, Edge Defender

Packers Third Round College Prospects for the 75th selection (3rd Round)

  • Anfernee Jennings: Alabama, Edge Defender
  • Chris Lindstrom: Boston College, Offensive Guard
  • Malik Reed: Nevada, Edge Defender
  • Joe Jackson: Miami, Edge Defender
  • Kaden Smith: Stanford, Tight End
  • Andy Isabella: UMass, Slot Receiver

Players the Packers Could Trade Down and Select:

  • Joe Jackson: Miami, Edge Defender
  • Kaden Smith: Stanford, Tight End
  • Andy Isabella: UMass, Slot Receiver* This is a player with a top 6 PFF grade whose stock will be determined by the senior bowl and pro days.  

Packers Second and Third Round Forecast:

  • With the 44th pick, the Packers select Jaylon Ferguson: Louisana Tech, Edge Defender
  • Trade up into the second round (61st selection) using the 75th pick and the 107th pick
  • With the 61st pick, the Packers select Beau Benzschawel: Wisconsin, Offensive Guard 

Packers 2019 First, Second, and Third Round Selections/Transactions Version 1.0:

  • 12th Pick- Jachai Polite: Florida, Edge Defender
  • 30-32nd Pick- Taylor Rapp: Washington, Safety
  • 44th Pick- Jaylon Ferguson: Lousiana Tech, Edge Defender
  • Trade the 75th and 107th pick for the 61st selection
  • 61st Pick- Beau Benzschawel: Wisconsin, Offensive Guard

Positions of Need Upgraded:

  1. Edge Defender
  2. Safety
  3. Right Guard

Let Your Voice be Heard:

Let me know what your thoughts are about the prospects that have been highlighted so far and what you think about the Packers 2019 Mock Draft Version 1.0 that I have presented.  



David Michalski is a staff writer for Cheesehead TV. He can be found on Twitter @kilbas27dave 

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (75) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Bure9620's picture

Big Kaden Smith fan. He's young but could be a steal, he will be a good pro for many years....if the packers took him at 44, I would be pretty happy with that

Hawg Hanner's picture

I'd put Left Tackle on the list. Like the guard selection.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Lt... I'd like to know why? Left side of the line was much better then the right side way...

Jonathan Spader's picture

In college the right side of the line are just athletes not good enough to play on the left side.

MarkinMadison's picture

I think the draft guys account for that in projecting players.

I do wonder if picking up a RT and bumping Bulaga inside might not prolong his career. Less kick-sliding, trying to keep up with speed rushers, and more forward angles in his movement might save some wear and tear on his knees.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

I find Cody Ford intriguing. At the moment I'd consider him at #32 but really hoping he's there at #44. Very athletic with good feet but inconsistent footwork. Not like Amichia and Spriggs: Ford has strength and power to spare.

Many of these rankings/projections will change with the Shrine and Senior games, and the combine and pro days.

Samson's picture

Two edge rushers are better than one plus a safety & an interior OL ..... so far so good --- I like it.

Old School's picture

I continue to be perplexed by the obsession with edge rushers.

I'm pointing out...again...that we were 6th in sacks and sack% in the NFL. I'd point out that we have two starters under contract....Perry and Fackrell. Perry has availability issues, but when he's healthy, he's a capable starter.

I've heard and read the arguments on both sides of keeping Perry, but I find that the most persuasive was from TGR. I've also heard/read the arguments for and against Matthews, but IMO, if we could sign him to a REASONABLE contract based on availability.....I'd be in favor of keeping him.

I just don't share the zeal for getting rid of starters because you didn't think they earned their contract. That makes holes that have to be filled.

In any event, we can't line up 5 guys in the secondary who can cover, and that's before the first injury. We need 9 healthy DBs who can cover on the gameday roster unless we want to leave people uncovered.

Our defensive line lost a starter last year and has Daniels and Lowry in the final year of their deals.

Our two starters at ILB are Martinez and whoever is healthy enough to line up next to him.

So overall, I'm having a hard time justifying releasing starters at OLB to save money when we aren't broke and we could strengthen the team elsewhere. Especially when our pass rush was the 6th most successful last year.!

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Martinez is in a contract year as well. So are Bulaga, Tramon, and Fackrell.

It is a fine line keeping players so as not to create a hole even if it means overpaying the player. Overpaying massively shouldn't be done, but overpaying somewhat is the fine line.

I am okay with re-signing CM3, but I think he's going to command more than I will think is reasonable. Even so, if the contract is pay-as-you-go, one that has an easy one-year out, one that doesn't just create another big dead money issue because GB uses signing bonuses too liberally, I'd be willing to pay a modest amount more than I think he's worth. I suppose I should put out a number: 3 yrs, $12M to $15M, no more than $3M in signing bonus. It should have a one year, $5M with $2M dead at most out.

dobber's picture

Love my Badgers. NOT a fan of Beau Benzschawel.

Bure9620's picture

Agreed Dobber, Benzschawel does NOT fit the atheltic profile the Packers target either. He is not that great in pass pro either, he's a mauler.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

Yep, he's a Power Guard. The Packers needs Guards that are more athletic like Tackles to zone block.

jeepingmakooi's picture

Judging the offense line play from both the Titans and the jags.. zone blocking is gonna be gone..

Old School's picture

Personally, I'd like to see a mauler. I'd like to see us put some maulers in front of Jones and Williams. Save wear and tear on Rodgers so he stays healthy.

OnWisconsinGoPack's picture

Love the Badgers too, also not a fan of Beau that high.

Where does David Edwards, Dalton Risner and Trey Adams stand on your availability? Same with Gardner-Johnson from Florida?

I'd rather have a better OT prospect at #32 than Rapp at Safety as he's not a center fielder. So unless Jackson gets moved to Free Safety, Gardner-Johnson or Adderling may be a better Safety grab in the second with Risner or Edwards backend of RD 1.

stockholder's picture

You take Dalton Risner first.

TheBigCheeze's picture

Pack GM needs to do whatever is necessary to acquire BOTH Polite and Ferrell.....

Bret Iverson's picture

Packers need quality players at almost any position. They tend to draft tackles and convert them to guards. I am not a fan of any Badger lineman, overrated this year. There play was horrible. They were fat, injured and slow. Not very athletic and I feel the combine will show that. I would have recommended all of that are not seniors stay in college.

Packerpasty's picture

please don't say "trade down" enough traded down JAGs on the roster as it is...

Jonathan Spader's picture

Yeah, look at that Alexander guy. Although we did trade back up to get him... do those 2 things cancel one another out?

Rak47's picture

It's surprising to me JS that you of all people have not mentioned a RB in the early part of the draft for GB. Considering Aaron Jones injury history [3 ACL injuries in 13 months] and how much LaFluer likes to run the ball and throw to his RB's out of the backfield. I think Gute and LaFluer will be interested in a bigger pass catching back who can do it all. I would not be surprised to see them go RB with one of their first 4 picks. As always it will come down to their board and how the picks are falling.

Jonathan Spader's picture

I've mentioned the need for drafting a RB early on in other threads :). Trying not to beat a dead horse. Agreed that it will come down to how the board shakes out.

Rak47's picture

I guessed I missed those. I shoulda figured you'd be all over that already, lol. Was checking out some mocks and it may have been Bucky Brooks [ not sure ] but they had a nice draft for the Packers going through 4 RD's. He had the Packers taking one of the RB's from Bama, either Harris or Jacobs. Both are listed at 5'10 215 and can catch and run. I think it was Jacobs though.

Jonathan Spader's picture

I mentioned it in reply to our talk about 4 days ago in regards to Bell. I said Bell would be a great addition for the right price but the odds of getting him at a reasonable rate were slim to none. That instead the Packers should take a RB early on in the draft if the right one falls to them. Then take a flier on one later on if there is a good enough raw athlete. Then bring in 5 UDFAs to compete.

4thand10's picture

“Edge Defender
Right Guard“

I would say ...

Free agent RG and Free agent safety

Old School's picture

"Early Rounds" is going to be a hard sell when we've got guys like Jones and Williams on the last day of the draft and finished 2nd in YPC.

But, as I constantly point out, it's a very long season and having a third horse to share the workload and keep people fresher, longer into the season, is a real good idea, IMO.

Personally, I'd try to engineer some down trades and end up with six picks in the first 3 rounds....the Top 100. Three offense, three defense. Balance wins.

Rak47's picture

This draft appears to be loaded at positions of need for the Packers, at O-line, Safety, Edge rusher, TE, and RB so trading back and acquiring picks is probably a good thing.

Rak47's picture

It's possible Old school but they would have to trade back both of their first round picks pulling something similar to last year twice in the first round so it's most unlikely. But if Gute can do it and still get his edge rusher high it would be a coup d'ètat for the Packers. If he he did that the Packers would most likely end up with a 1st, three 2nd's, and two 3rd rd's giving them a total of six picks in the top 100.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I think the Packers will pick up a RB in this draft, but I think it would be a mistake to do it earlier than round 5 (unless they felt someone "dropped in their laps"). Very good RBs can be had in the later rounds, and the Packers are already 2 deep.

Jonathan Spader's picture

How did being 2 deep at RB work out for the Packers when Lacy and Starks both got injured? That's when we had MM at HC/OC. Not a HC/OC who are known for running the football. I agree that the right RB would have 5o fall to the Packers to make it worth their investment in draft capital. I don't think 2 is anywhere near deep in today's NFL. Especially at a position that takes as much punishment as RB.

4thand10's picture

Your right JS. And 2 is no where near having enough...especially with the refusal to use a fullback. My personal opinion is for every RB drafted or acquired by the rest of the NFC it forced GB to continually draft defense...if we had absolute back breaker fundamentally changes how the rest of the NFC north plays defense. Good OL and RBs force them to not just tee off on Rodgers and Jam receivers. In my mind, you want to make teams think and overthink by forcing them to defend everything. We have not drafted skill position players for awhile it seems like. Going to be tough this year with OL and Edge being such a priority.

HankScorpio's picture

Upgrade the OL and RBs become much easier to find. When the OL is opening big holes and the run/pass mix leaves the defense guessing, lots of guys can be productive running.

Nick Perry's picture

Thank you Packerpasty… I'm just in HUGE favor of the Packers drafting exactly where they are. The Packers CAN improve their team tremendously by just staying where they are now and using those picks on BPA which most likely addresses a need too.

Drafting twice in the first gives the Packers 2 players we'd have under contract for a possible 5 years. Pair that with pretty high picks in the 2nd and 3rd, two more in the 4th and the Packers can fill needs and get some much needed depth all before say pick 115.

packerbackerjim's picture

Safety Juan Thornhill is receiving rave reviews and could very well be available in the second round. Again, all bets are off until after the combine/pro days.

Rak47's picture

It's being reported that Morgan Burnett has requested a release from the Steelers and they're set to release him. Could a possible reunion in GB be in the cards? Stay tuned folks!

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I'm one of those ravers! :)

the real russ letlow's picture

2 edge a safety and OL sounds like 4 good picks to me. We need OL depth that can run block too.

Colin_C's picture

Really like what I've seen from Ximines so far. Reminds me of Carl Lawson from two years ago.

Dzehren's picture

Let’s get back to drafting second round wide receivers and mid round left tackles.

stockholder's picture

Nasir Adderly S is going to screw up this draft. He's getting the press. He will be the #1 S. on draft day with a great combine. My biggest question mark, isn't trading for picks. It's if Gute has the balls to go against the fans on a edge rusher! ( In rd. 1.) Some of this will be answered with Perry and CMIII. The pick @12 will force Gute to trade up in rd. 1. ( From 3?! for need) Not dropping back! Ho Hum is Polite and Kisner. But try this based on hype. Adderley @12, @3? Devin Bush, @ 44 J. Tillery DT @76 Irv Smith TE.

WinUSA's picture

You are the first to mention Irv Smith. He was very solid in blocking and caught everything thrown at him during the playoffs. I would take home over Iowa’s TE that everyone is touting.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I think Polite is going to be good, but I do like Adderley, Tillery, and Smith. You and I both go back a long time as draftniks, Stockholder. Looking at the player rankings on draft websites right now, they are, as usual, very different than how they will end up. I see a LOT of guys who are currently bandied about as 2nd and 3rd round picks who I believe will end up rising to late 1st and early 2nds. It's a yearly frustration for me to get excited about someone who is "ranked" a third rounder and I put them as my Packers' 2nd round pick, only to have them actually go in the first round! It happens every friggin year! :-D

stockholder's picture

Polite should be good for the right fit. He's up and down the boards, like our Jackson last year. If he's our choice, trade Down a few! And take the #44 to move up to around to @35. Tillery was a value pick. and Irv Smith is jumping.(2nd rd.) I still like looking at Fant around 3?. The more I read. The more he is what we need. Player ups and downs. I Think last year had a better top 50. But this year is good to 32. SOME GUYS ARE BEING PUSHED DOWN FOR THE COMBINE. The J. Williams talk is surprising me. He was a top 10 lock. The hardest pick; to find a starting player that is between 3? - 45. Right now. The packers pick 44. I'm moving up Linstrom( late 2nd) and Risner(Late1-early 2). So the packers draft looks like Polite, but I prefer Sweat. (And this is why you can trade down a few.) Fant, and Bush are now 25-30. I would take Fant. @3? over a OL, even Bush. He can Jump by one article I read. When have we seen a jumping TE in GB? The OL is being downgraded by most sites. (It's turning into a crap shoot!) The DE/Edge are at the top now. Keeping score? @12 My BPA is Simmons, replace Wilkerson! 3? Fant, Replaces Lewis, Kendrick and maybe Graham. @44, trade up for Bush! Target Adderley Safety. Worse case scenario seen so far; Polite ,Risner C/T, Lingstrom G,

Packer Fan's picture

I say trade down on the 32nd pick and get two more in first three rounds. Five total. Then edge, OL, slot receiver, safety and TE can all be filled. Then these picks can be for future too. Cause not all five will panout immediately. OL, slot receiver, safety and edge are all free agent targets too.

MarkinMadison's picture

Good chance they will get offers at that spot. I'd be up for that too.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Some drafts have TJ Hockenson going to Detroit at #8
and Noah Fant at #32

albert999's picture

Be great to get them both

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I don't get the Fant love. I'm not impressed at all by his game tape; I don't see any elusiveness. He seems like a "looks like Tarzan plays like Jane" guy. I'd be very happy to see some other team take him high! :-D I think Hockenson will be much better than Fant, but I think Irv Smith will be better than both of them.

Summer_PackerBacker's picture

I don't understand the Taylor Rapp pick at all, was going to comment this in the last article but forgot. I think Rapp is a rather generic JAG athlete, and given the deep safety crop this year, we could do better. Nasir Adderley is a major prospect, and a think Juan Thornhill is also elite athletically and mentally. Hopefully we get good value, I just don't see Rapp as a first round talent. More pertaining to this article, I like Christian Miller from Alabama as our 2nd edge rusher pick of the draft, he has alot of injuries but would be worth a third rounder as long as we don't have to rely on him.

albert999's picture

a lot of injuries coming in is not what need and we need to rely on every player your paying

Summer_PackerBacker's picture

It's a risk/reward equation, he's talented but has had some injuries. But as far as I know bicep tears aren't known to be recurring injuries? I don't think it's fair to just brush him off as injury prone before taking a deeper look at the history.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

The most important part of this draft for the Packers is what happens BEFORE it in free agency. So I'm hoping: 1. Free agent Starting Right Guard, 2. Free agent Safety 3. Free agent Outside Linebacker DRAFT: #12 Devin White LB (THERE's your pass rush!), #32 Safety Nasir Adderly or Juan Thornhill (athletic ballhawks!)--if they are gone, the best edge who is left, #44 The best TE or WR available (Hakeem Butler or Irv Smith?)
I think Pettine's defense would be amazing with White roaming as a wildcard who could blitz from anywhere behind Clark and Daniels. Add in a fast ballhawking safety and the defense could really shine. Offensively, we need a guard and one more consistent receiving threat--I love Butler or Smith in that role, unfortunately, I think Butler is going to end up late-rising to the first round. He may be the most athletic 6'6" receiver I've seen in 40 year of draftniking...

mrtundra's picture

We do need O Linemen. Also, Clellin Ferrell as a pass rusher at #12 would be a great pick. That being said, I'd also love to see Devin White in Green and Gold. He can do it all as a LB and that includes rushing the passer. If White is available at #12, I wouldn't be upset with that pick, whatsoever. Right now, I think White has the edge over an O Line pick at #12 or Ferrell being on the board when our pick at #12 comes in.

packerbackerjim's picture

He would be the one player I would definitely take in the unlikely when we’re to fall to 12.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

Love Ferrell, I just don't expect him to be there at 12, but I think White might.

packerbackerjim's picture

I should have made clear I was referring to White not making it to 12. Ferrell might not either.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I agree we need OL, but I'm hoping we get the G in free agency, and pick up a prospect in the 4th round. I'd like a C/G swing player; then later, I'd pick an OT maybe. I actually think the Packers OTs are okay for now, even though improvement would be preferred!

HankScorpio's picture

This draft is said to be heavy in defensive front 7, OL and TE. IMO, that's exactly in line with their most pressing team needs.

When the strength of the draft board lines up with your team needs so nicely, don't fall in love with any one guy. Let the board's strength work to your advantage.

PackEyedOptimist's picture

I think there will be a good TE prospect at the second 4th round pick--I like that middle round depth at TE and WR in this draft.

stockholder's picture

Everybody is up and down on the OL now. Either Don't like the feet, base, length. Push etc. Front seven- Williams ,Oliver Simmons. Forget the rest. we should not draft a DL if these 3 are gone. OLB/ De/Edge is the strength. And Many Wrs are up and down. Combine speed here. But I Like Butler.

KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

Eloquently stated and wholeheartedly agree!

KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

Hakeem Butler does look like LeBron James in uniform. Sure seems like he could dominate on NFL level. What impressed me was (1) how at 6'6" he runs away from DB's (2) his yardage after a catch. Very difficult to tackle.

Not hard to project him as a future superstar! Think Megatron instead of in Detroit but in GB! Could see him go within first 12 selections of first round. Even with the Pack having all their documented needs elsewhere I could see them hesitate if he is available at #12. For sure with team wanting a superstar like WR the Pack might find a trading partner back to 15 or 18.

Not Pack's biggest need or even close but with his talent along with Adam's and first year WR's would this offense be impressive if they pick up a few OL in FA and draft along with Tonyan and a TE in draft.

If you haven't done so go look at a few youtube video's. Pretty impressive!

PackEyedOptimist's picture

Currently, "no one" is calling Butler a first round pick, but I expect him to go around pick 20. It's possible he doesn't have good route-running skills, or hasn't played great competition, etc., but he just looks like a guy who could dominate eventually. I wouldn't take him at 12, but I'd consider him at 30 depending on who else is still available; I'd TAKE him at 44.

KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

Without question his stock will rise quickly before the draft. Cannot teach size and speed! He definitely is intriguing! I really like several of Packs young WR's and still hope Moore develops, however Butler sure seems to have amazing skills. Could you see Rodgers tossing daggers to Butler? Wow!

OldTimer's picture

You seem to put a lot of thought and research into the draft. I would be curious to see your big board, at least the top 100.

Old School's picture

We need a starter at RG.
We need a reliable backup OT at both spots.

We need more DBs who can cover and tackle.

We need to replace the DL starter we lost, Wilkerson.

We need somebody behind Rodgers that we could maybe win a game with. Not Kizer.

Now, if we start releasing people, then we need more things. But right now, this is it.

Jonathan Spader's picture

The thought is if we release overpaid players we have more salary cap to fill more holes with more veterans. Getting the right players for the right price can lead to the cuts.

HankScorpio's picture

The Packers just traded up from 32 to 30. Thanks, Rams!

stockholder's picture

Did it with a younger Kicker and QB. Maybe we should be talking Arron Rodgers and Crosby Here, and not Graham.

packerbackerjim's picture

And thanks to a bad no-call from the official.

dobber's picture

It was an atrocious no-call, but should've never come down to the no-call. Saints throw short coming out of the 2-minute warning rather than running the ball. Gave the Rams a chance to get the ball back with time and a TO. Payton blew it.

packerbackerjim's picture

I never look a gift horse in the mouth!

KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

Such a good feeling! :)

KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

Couple of articles I would like to see someone write about are:

1. Kareem Hunt - are fans willing to give him another chance? How would everyone evaluate Gute if he picked him up next year in FA? No doubt he would be a star running back that would save a draft choice and really propel the offense. Do not see it happening but the Bears say they want him and that would be disastrous should that happen.
2. Montravious Adam's- I had such great expectations for him and he has greatly underwhelmed. Next year will be his 3rd season and a huge career year for him. Will he buckle down? Lancaster as a rookie, and Dean Lowery got significant more press. Adams has talent but does he have the motor, drive, and ambition?

D Ernie's picture

I hope the pack do NOT go after Gary or Weinovich. I watched all the M games and both stood out when playing lesser schools like Ill, Maryland, Rutgers, Minnesota.
Both went Missing in the big games, MSU and OSU. The reason, their O lines were tough.
Gary reminds me of Perry, a guy who takes a lot of plays off to save energy and can go missing in games. Wienovich just gets handled by better O linemen.
Besides the BS of the number one d in college was a ruse. They were nowhere near the top.

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