The National Football League Scouting Combine in Indianapolis concluded on Feb. 23 as many prospects showed off their skills in front of all 32 teams.
Many fans argue as to why there needs to be coverage of players doing drills in Under Armour gear, but this event is a big deal for everyone involved. It is a chance for teams to see prospects, show off strength and speed, and sit down to interview the players.
In 2014 the Green Bay Packers had a solid draft class that contributed with excellent play. Here are some positions that are needed and possible prospects that the Packers should target.
Inside Linebacker Position– With Brad Jones released a year too late, and A.J. Hawk possibly on his way out, the Packers must succeed in drafting this position. Eric Kendricks, despite being listed at 6-foot 230 pounds, is viewed as one of the top linebacker prospects. He is quick to the ball and a solid tackler, something the Packers have lacked. Bernardrick McKinney is another prospect and is the biggest at 6’4” 246 pounds. His quickness in coverage is viewed as a weakness, but his size and ability to hit the line of scrimmage and disrupt plays is what makes him stand out. Other possible prospects are Denzel Perryman of University of Miami and Paul Dawson of Texas Christian University who struggled at the combine.
Offensive Tackle and Cornerback- Depending on what happens in the coming months with free agency, the positions of offensive tackle and cornerback could pose problems for lack of depth. If tackle Bryan Bulaga leaves for free agency, the Packers will need to address that need in the early rounds of drafting, with possible targets such as Cedric Ogbuehi of Texas A&M. If Bulaga resigns, the team should should add depth to the position in case Bulaga’s injury problems return. There could be a huge need for the cornerback position if both Tramon Williams and Davone House do not return. Possible targets could be Quinten Rollins of Miami (Ohio), Marcus Peters of University of Washington and P.J. Williams of Florida State.
Maxx Williams, TE, Minnesota– Williams poses a conundrum for the Packers if he falls to the 30th pick. Despite drafting Richard Rodgers in 2014, Williams has some intangibles that could make him succeed. He has great hands and speed which allow him to stretch defenses. In college, 82 percent of his catches were for a touchdown or a first down. Williams isn’t a Jimmy Graham type of tight end that most teams want but is comparable to Dallas tight end Jason Witten.
Jordan Phillips, DT, Oklahoma– Defensive tackle may be a big need if the team does not resign B.J. Raji, who missed the entire 2014 season and Letroy Guion, who was arrested earlier this month. A possible target in the early rounds could be Jordan Phillips of Oklahoma, who is physically imposing on the line, which is what the Packers did not have in 2014. The 6’5″ 329 pound Phillips interviewed with the Packers in Indianapolis and has a connection to the team as his defensive coordinator at Oklahoma, Jerry Montgomery, was hired to be an assistant in Green Bay.