Over the last few months I have tried to defend Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy, even though I have thought all along that they should have gotten more involved in the free agency bidding war. I felt that Thompson let player after player slip through his fingers in the name of not wanting to spend money, like it's coming out of his personal bank account. All everyone kept saying was he has a plan and he's going to make the draft work. He's going to get the playmakers that this team needs and he is going to get Brett Favre the help he needs to maybe take this team to the promised land.
For months the Packer Nation has been going back and forth over whether or not Randy Moss would be able to help this team. For some reason many thought that Ted Thompson realized that he could help and would be willing to pull the trigger and make a trade happen. As I see it after what I witnessed this past weekend I'm not sure the Packers ever talked to the Raiders about making it happen.
With the Packers not giving up a third round pick for Moss, they are saying that James Jones is better than Randy Moss. So as I see it, the Packers got no Randy Moss, no real playmakers, and no improvement on the offense. This team stood still and watched every other team in the NFC North get better.
The Green Bay Packers are on the bottom looking up and guess who's responsible for it? I wonder how No. 4 is feeling about coming back? He must feel like a one-legged man in a butt kicking contest.
What did the other teams in the division do that made them better? Let's take a look at the first round picks because that's depressing enough. According to Ted Thompson, by way of Bob Harlan, the Packers do things differently. They are "more serious than many GMs when he says he'll lean towards drafting a higher-rated player rather than for need." We have heard coach talk, general manager talk and now we hear CEO talk, and it all sounds the same and smells the same, if you know what I mean.
All off-season we have been hearing how the Packers do things. Guess what? It's time to change and do it differently because it's time to realize this way stinks and isn't helping this team get better. It's time to realize the Packers aren't smarter than the other teams in the league, and right now they are seen as one of the laughing stock teams of the league after these horrible picks.
OK, back to comparing other NFC North teams to the Packers. The Lions took the best receiver that was in college in Calvin Johnson. Not only did he fill a need, but was the best at doing so. The Vikings used their first pick on Adrian Peterson, the best running back in the draft. Like the Lions, they filled a need. And the Chicago Bears needed a tight end and wouldn't you know it? They got the best coming out of college in Greg Olsen. How can these teams fill their needs and get the best coming into the NFL from college? Does their scouting department or general manager read different books? I have been saying forever that the Packers needed to make the trade with Randy Moss and the Raiders before anyone else would get into a bidding war. Rumor after rumor had him coming to Green Bay. I guess someone forgot to tell the Patriots because now with him they are the front-runners to get to the Super Bowl. There is an old saying you snooze, you lose, and now Green Bay is an example of that. Thanks Ted!!!!!!
With all the promise this draft was supposed to deliver someone dropped the ball. Instead of getting someone that this team could really use, Ted Thompson went out and drafted Justin Harrell. WHY? And I love Ted's comments. He said if this guy hadn't been hurt his senior year he might have been a top ten pick, but guess what? He did get hurt and this team had other needs and this pick didn't address any needs. He wasn't even the best player in that position. This team needed a receiver. Robert Meachem of Tennessee and Dwayne Bowe of LSU were available. If you didn't want them there was a need at safety or corner because of Ted's bad decision on signing Marquand Manuel last year, and a lot of unknowns in the secondary. He could have picked Leon Hall from Michigan, Michael Griffin from Texas, Aaron Ross from Texas, Reggie Nelson from Florida, to name a few, that would have more impact than Justin Harrell, but that would make too much sense.
If that wasn't bad enough they went and drafted Brandon Jackson in the second round, a guy that most scouts had going in the 4th or 5th rounds because he has no breakaway speed, has trouble catching the ball, and has never been a featured back. His claim to fame is that he had over 835 yards in 9 games. If my math is right that doesn't amount to averaging over 100 yards a game. Is this guy supposed to be the savior at running back just because Nebraska runs the zone blocking scheme? This is making me want to throw up and it should you as well.
Hold on, it gets better with the third round pick. James Jones' only strength is that he has strong hands, but it doesn't matter because he doesn't have the moves or speed to get away from anyone.
With their other third round pick, the Packers drafted a strong safety that most scouts felt will be a safety, or linebacker, because he doesn't have the instincts to find the ball in the air and has trouble covering people in and out of breaks. Sound like anyone else on this team?
These were the first four picks on the first day of the draft. I know that everyone says that it doesn't mean anything until you put the pads on, but, trust me, I'm not the only one wondering WHAT THE BLEEP WAS THAT!!!!
Harry Sydney is a former fullback and assistant coach for the Green Bay Packers. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.