"Tradedown" Ted Thompson shed his image a bit last year. The Green Bay Packers general manager had developed a reputation for loving the ability to accumulate picks by moving down in the NFL Draft when he felt he could still get the player he targeted.
Last year, Thompson likely surprised many among his team's fans by moving up. After using the ninth pick on defensive tackle B.J. Raji, Thompson maneuvered into the latter portion of the first round to snare linebacker Clay Matthews from USC. Matthews only made the Pro Bowl as a rookie, while Raji shook off a hamstring problem to show some promise.
What will Thompson have up his sleeve this year, as he tries to add more bodies to a defense that was pasted in a late-season loss to Pittsburgh and the playoff defeat at Arizona?
Previous Pick: Patriots -- Sergio Kindle, DE, Texas; Next Up: Eagles
(Note: The poll is now closed. Click here for the latest on the 2010 NFL Mock Draft, Fans' Picks Edition)
Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State: In the latest edition of The Sporting News, Robinson says he is "a physical corner that likes to hit." Does that sound like anyone on Green Bay's roster? Perhaps a Packer fan could see some similarity between Robinson and the Packers' two starting cornerbacks in Week 1 last year, Al Harris and reigning Defensive Player of the Year Charles Woodson. No law says the team has to draft a clone of either player, but Robinson's ability in press coverage and run support would be a great asset in this defense, especially if Harris is slow to recover from a torn ACL or never regains his previous form.
Taylor Mays, S, USC: The Packers found a serviceable player in Atari Bigby, a former street free agent who was not drafted out of Central Florida. However, Bigby is injury-prone and perhaps not the best fit for this defense. Mays has his flaws. He can miss guys in the open field as he tries for the kill shot. However, his physical gifts might be too good for the Packers to pass up at No. 23.
Jared Odrick, DE/DT, Penn State: Odrick might be a natural for defensive end in the Packers' 3-4 defense, and they could need one with the uncertain status of Johnny Jolly and questionable depth along the defensive front. Odrick is a big, strong player who is good at shedding blocks and finding the football. He might never make an impact getting to the quarterback, but he could still be a very effective NFL lineman.
Mike Iupati, G, Idaho: Explosive off the ball, Iupati has been thought by some to be a decent tackle prospect at the next level. At the very least, he could be an option for the Packers as an initial backup to Clifton and Tauscher, as well as starting guards Daryn Colledge and Josh Sitton. With Colledge coming up on free agency, Iupati could either be groomed for that spot or as a future starting tackle, depending on how he improves his footwork.