So let's use some revisionist history.
The Packers picked Joey Thomas with the 70th overall pick, Donnell Washington with the 72nd pick and B.J. Sander with the 87th pick. None of the three are on Packers' roster, which makes Sherman an easy target for fans' scorn. But it's not like Sherman passed over any Pro Bowlers. He could have landed, however, some quality players.
So, with hindsight being 20-20, who could the Packers have selected with those three third-round picks? Here's the list, from pick 71 — the pick after the Packers picked Joey Thomas — through pick 96, which is the end of the third round:
71. Randy Starks, DT, by Tennessee
73. Keith Smith, CB, by Detroit
74. Tim Anderson, DT, by Buffalo
75. Max Starks, OT, by Pittsburgh
76. Derrick Strait, CB, by the Jets
77. Derrick Hamilton, WR, by San Francisco
78. Bernard Berrian, WR, by Chicago
79. Marquis Cooper, LB, by Tampa Bay
80. Caleb Miller, LB, by Cincinnati
81. Chris Cooley, FB, by Washington
82. Devard Darling, WR, by Baltimore
83. Stephen Peterman, G, by Dallas
84. Sean Locklear, T, by Seattle
85. Jeremy LeSueur, DB, by Denver
86. Jorge Cordova, LB, by Jacksonville
88. Darrion Scott, DE, by Minnesota
89. Matt Ware, CB, by Philadelphia
90. Matt Schaub, QB, by Atlanta
91. Tony Hargrove, DE, by St. Louis
92. Rich Gardner, CB, by Tennessee
93. Keyaron Fox, LB, by Kansas City
94. Travelle Wharton, T, by Carolina
95. Guss Scott, S, by New England
96. Landon Johnson, LB, by Cincinnati
Of that group, eight are starters today: Randy Starks, Tim Anderson, Max Starks, Chris Cooley, Sean Locklear, Tony Hargrove, Travelle Wharton and Landon Johnson.
Could the Packers use Randy Starks' 7.5 sacks over the last two seasons? Could the Packers use another offensive lineman, such as Max Starks, Wharton or Locklear, who started all 16 games for the defending NFC champions? Certainly, the Packers could have used Cooley's 13 career touchdowns receptions from a tight end position hamstrung by David Martin's chronic inconsistency.
The most intriguing guy the Packers could have had is quarterback Schaub, who is mired behind Michael Vick in Atlanta. With Schaub, the Packers would have had the heir for Brett Favre, and used last year's first-round pick on someone other than Aaron Rodgers. Or, the Packers could have taken Rodgers and dealt Schaub during the off-season.
And perhaps most interesting of all, only five of 2004's third-rounders are no longer on their original team. Hamilton is out of the league and LeSueur has bounced around. The others are the unemployed Sander, Washington (third-team with Oakland) and Thomas (working behind former Packer Mike McKenzie at cornerback).
Lawrence is a regular contributor to PackerReport.com. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.