Going into Ted Thompson’s press conference this afternoon, everyone knew one thing: there would be no bombshells of information imparted.
He was true to form today.
Thompson talked about the process of the Packers’ draft day, how they approach it, and how they evaluate how they’ve done in the end.
That’s certainly not much to write home about, but there were a few somewhat interesting comments by the Packers’s GM.
Here are a few of his comments:
On whether the Packers go into the draft by targeting specific players or filling specific position: ” We don’t feel we have to target a particular position.”
On the draft process given the Packers have lost several front office people who previously participated: ” The process is exactly the same … we miss the fellas who have moved on … there are others who step in and pick up the slack … all of us have worked together for a number of years … it’s a grind. We have the grind meetings before the combine … we can’t predict it … the more into it the more you get back to basics and make sure have players ranked correctly … but that’s easier said than done.”
On anticipating the draft: “I get anxious and want to add the right players.”
On the compensatory picks: “I’m glad to have them … always good to have the extra picks … like Ron [Wolf] used to say, the more swings you have, the better.”
On whether Thompson enjoys the later rounds better than the first couple of rounds: It’s a different atmosphere. We treat all rounds very seriously, but the room is different by the time you get to Saturday … there are fewer people in the room and the excitement dies down and the pressure to do good the first two days is past … We have a number of picks in the 7th round and then we get right into the college free agency thing.
On whether the team has a list of players that they target: “It’s difficult to predict who will be there. It always comes as a surprise and all of a sudden this guy on the board and we say, let’s see if we can get him …We haven’t done a lot of [trading up] but some …
On why the quality of defensive linemen is so thin in the draft: “It’s a tough position when you’re pushing and shoving against 300- 350-pounders. They’re at a premium and it’s really a question of numbers.
On the Packers not having a single owner like he had when he was in Seattle: “Mr. Allen (Seahawks owner) was very interesed in the draft. He woould send emails … but there was no interference with the ownership [during the draft] … It’s no different here. Mark [Murphy] is in the draft room, but there is no interference. I have more trouble with the scouts – just kidding about that.”
On players coming out of college early and whether there’s a difference between the younger players and those who have finished 4-5 years of college: “There is a difference. I think, as a rule, people in my position wish more players would fulfill their term in college … they tend to be more mature …
On the qualities they look for in a QB: ”Good person, good teammate, good athlete, good arm, good decision-maker, good everything … there are intangibles at the position that you won’t know until you know …
On small versus big school athletes: It’s easier to see how they’re going to do if they played in larger college playing against higher quality competition. They have the competitive pressure. All rookies coming in, from first day, it’s about competition. So having competed for 4-5 years in major college gives a better background.
On whether there is room on the roster if the team selects 10-12 rookies: “That will be determined in the competitive market. We’re always looking at adding quality and class. Things happen. People get hurt … you can never have too many guys.
On whether the Packers look at the character of a potential player than most teams in the NFL: I think most people look at it … It’s no different for us than any of the other teams or any business … We’re always looking at adding good quality people – poeple that lift others up. We’re no different than any other team or business organization.”