With names like Golden Tate, Charles Brown and Ricky Sapp, as well as several solid cornerbacks on the board when the Green Bay Packers selected with the No. 56 overall pick, the team selected defensive tackle Mike Neal from Purdue.
That’s right, Mike Neal from Purdue – a defensive tackle.
So what you’re telling me is the Packers chose a guy I’ve never heard of who plays a position they have no need for in the second round?
Yup, that’s exactly what I’m telling you because let’s face facts – Packers’ GM Ted Thompson is smarter than you, me and every other single person in the entire world. You need look no further than him drafting Justin Harrell in the first round to figure that out.
So, while the Packers addressed their need for a tackle with the first-round selection of Bryan Bulaga, they decided to completely ignore their needs at outside linebacker, cornerback and safety and go with a defensive lineman, which is one of the strongest positions on the team, in the second round.
A brilliant strategy if I have ever seen one. The old misdirection. The Packers really stuck it to rest of the NFL today.
OK, OK, the pick makes some sense if Neal is the real deal, but I really had to dig to figure it out.
First, Neal looks like he’ll be a defensive end in the Packers’ 3-4. He’s 6-3, 294, which is too small for a 3-4 defensive tackle. He’s closer in size to, say, current Packers’ starter at defensive end, Cullen Jenkins, who is 6-2, 305.
The Packers, of course, already have two solid starters at the defensive end position. In addition to Jenkins, the Packers have Johnny Jolly.
However, Jenkins’ contract expires after the 2010 season and Jolly is a big question mark.
First, Jolly was a restricted free agent this offseason. He is yet to sign his tender, but the Packers thought enough of him to tender him at the first-round level. It’s possible the Packers will let Jolly play on that one-year agreement, which would be idiotic in light of Jenkins’ contract expiring after the season, but stranger things have happened… like today, in the second round of the draft, when Ted Thompson selected Mike Neal.
Second, Jolly is going to trial for possession of 200 grams of codeine on May 21. If convicted, Jolly faces up to 20 years in prison. While 20 years is an unlikely sentence for a first-time offender, Jolly is likely to be suspended under the NFL’s personal conduct policy for being a moron, if nothing else.
So, there you have it. Mike Neal was chose, well… just in case.
I won’t say Neal was a bad pick because I know zero about him, although CBS Sports did give him a fifth-round grade. So, at the very least, he was a huge reach and with the Packers potentially two or three players away from being great, a reach that makes absolutely no fucking sense.
There, I said it. And I have something else to say.
Fuck you, Ted Thompson, you stupid fucking cunt!
Alright, I feel better now.
So, anyway, here’s NFL.com’s analysis on Neal.
Neal has really active hands that never stop working. He exhibits notable leadership qualities. Has the instincts necessary to diagnose and find the football. Does a good job pushing the pocket with his power rush. Has good lateral agility. Plays with a relentless motor.
Neal only has average range and won’t consistently track down plays to the outside. Has a narrow base and isn’t always capable on anchoring and holding up at the point of attack. As a three technique, needs to expand and broaden his pass rush package.