Notre Dame Fighting Irish defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt (7) celebrates with teammates after recovering a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Mock Draft: With the 21st pick the Green Bay Packers select . . .


As a FanSided Green Bay Packers site we are participating in a ongoing 2014 NFL Mock Draft with some of the Local and NFL sites of Fansided. You can follow the ongoing draft at Factory of Sadness to see all of the picks leading to our selection below. Follow along as we complete all 32 teams First Round Picks.

Off the Board: 1. Houston Texans – QB Teddy Bridgewater 2. St. Louis Rams – WR Sammy Watkins 3. Jacksonville Jaguars – QB Blake Bortles 4. Cleveland Browns – QB Johnny Manziel 5. Oakland Raiders – DE Jadeveon Clowney 6. Atlanta Falcons – OT Jake Matthews 7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – OLB Anthony Barr 8. Minnesota Vikings – QB Derek Carr 9. Buffalo Bills – WR Mike Evans 10. Detroit Lions – CB Darqueze Dennard 11. Tennessee Titans – OLB Khalil Mack 12. New York Giants – OT Greg Robinson 13. St. Louis Rams – CB Justin Gilbert 14. Chicago Bears – DT Louis Nix III 15. Pittsburg Steelers – S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix 16. Baltimore Ravens – WR Kelvin Benjamin 17. Dallas Cowboys – DT Ra’Shede Hageman 18. New York Jets – TE Eric Ebron 19. Miami Dolphins – OT Taylor Lewan 20. Arizona Cardinals – S Calvin Pryor

21. Green Bay selects Stephon Tuitt, Notre Dame, Defensive End - With four defensive linemen, including three starters, headed for free agency, Tuitt fills an immediate need on the defensive line for the Packers.

Tuitt is a rare talent. He’s got tremendous size at 6-6 and 310 pounds for a defensive end, and he’s a great mix of power and athleticism. Tuitt also has experience as a two-gap defensive end in Notre Dame’s 3-4 defense, and the Packers desperately need more defensive linemen that can hold up against the run in the base and get after the quarterback on passing downs.

With safeties HaSean Clinton-Dix and Calvin Pryor and tight end Eric Ebron already off the board, the Packers would be happy to address their defensive line with a player of Stephon Tuitt’s caliber. He is perhaps the top 3-4 defensive end in this year’s draft class.

Tuitt has been the top pass rusher for the Fighting Irish in his time there, recording 19.5 sacks the past two seasons. His high motor combined with his ability to explode off the line and use his hands to swat off offensive linemen helps Tuitt collapse the pocket and pressure the quarterback.

Tuitt’s game still needs to be polished. His technique could improve, but he’s a prospect with a ton of upside. He could be a staple on Green Bay’s defensive line for years to come. He would also help a Green Bay unit that has struggled to stop the run for several seasons now. You can’t go wrong taking a guy that can both tw0-gap and get after the quarterback.

The Packers could also select Alabama’s C.J. Mosley here. Their defense could use an impact player at inside linebacker; however, there will still be plenty of inside linebacker talent available in rounds 2-4, and the talent along the defensive line significantly drops off after the first couple of rounds.

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Tags: 2014 NFL Mock Draft Green Bay Packers Stephon Tuitt

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