Sydney Speaks! Advice for Thompson

The Green Bay Packers have two voids on their roster that need to be filled, says Packer Report's Harry Sydney

It's that time of the year when some of the hardest working men in professional football come out of the dark. Now it's their time to shine. This is the time of the year when all the homework is supposed to pay off. This is that time of the year when all the general managers get in front of the camera and lie to all their fans by saying ," This guy is the one that we wanted all along." Ask yourself how many times have you heard that? To me this is one of the more interesting drafts for the Green Bay Packers because they only need two players to fill in a void, so they aren't that far off. Of course, I will explain!

If this team remains the same and doesn't improve anywhere on its roster, it still will be one of the better teams in the NFC because it is strong in almost every position. That makes this year's draft one of the more interesting ones, doesn't it?

General Manager Ted Thompson and his scouting department has traveled the country to find out everything they can about every player they are interested in. As always, Ted Thompson hasn't even given anyone a remote clue of what direction this team will be going, but we do know a couple of things, don't we? One thing we know is that this team needs another running back to help Ryan Grant, and that guy isn't on the roster yet. The other thing we know is that Donald Lee, even though he signed a contract recently, isn't the guy at tight end that will help this team remain as one of the top teams in the NFC. So right off of the top I see two possible positions where the 30th pick just might fill a void for the Packers.

I know many mock draft gurus want to shove a cornerback down the throats of the Packers. I say, "Ted, don't do it!" Tramon Williams and Will Blackmon are better than anything you would get in the first two rounds of the draft. There are many positions where experience pays more dividends than youth and cornerback is one of those spots, especially since the Packers haven't done a good job drafting corners in the first round, right? If I say, "Ahmad Carroll or Joey Thomas" is that enough to stop the madness?

The Packers could take an offensive lineman that could play both guard and tackle. One name that keeps popping up is Sam Baker from USC. Some say they worry about him playing at tackle because he has short arms, but he can play guard, which would fill a void.

If you have followed me and my articles, one the things that drives me crazy is when teams draft someone number one and can't tell him exactly where he's going to play and when. This team has had enough projects. It doesn't need another one. The Packers used that up last year with the Justin Harrell pick. So as much as they like Baker he might be another reach.

It comes down to two positions, in my opinion, with the Packers' first pick. My first choice is Dustin Keller, a TE from Purdue, because he can stretch the field and give Aaron Rodgers a target. Even though he is more of a pass-catching tight end and route runner, I think he would help the offense especially since Mike McCarthy likes having a bunch of tight ends . As much as McCarthy is a guru with quarterbacks he likes to disguise formations by using tight ends.

If not the tight end from Purdue, then I would go with a running back not only to give Ryan Grant a rest but this team needs a home-run threat out of the backfield, especially when the offense decides to spread it out with four or five receivers. That guy could be Chris Johnson out of East Carolina. Not only did he run a 4.2 40, but the Packers could finally have that guy that can run screens, draws and be a third-down threat, which it hasn't had in a very long time. Both of these positions - tight end and running back - would take a lot of pressure off of Rodgers. At the same time, it makes this team so much better.

As I look at this team, it really isn't that far off so imagine if it were to trade for Jason Taylor and draft Chris Johnson or Dustin Keller? Just my opinion, but does anyone have an idea WHAT TED IS GOING TO DO?

Harry Sydney is a former fullback and assistant coach for the Green Bay Packers. E-mail him at

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