Aug 29, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson watches play on the sidelines during the second half of the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs won 30-8. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Packers’ GM Ted Thompson’s genius should be appreciated

As free agency rolls along, the Green Bay Packers are not as active as many other teams once again. Criticism increases annually for Ted Thompson as the defense struggles to improve. Packers Nation is calling for his job due to lack of overpaying free agents.

This is nothing new to Thompson.

In the spring of 2005, the hate for Thompson was at an all-time high. He used his 24th pick to draft Aaron Rodgers. The Packers fan base was outraged. Brett Favre even made it publicly known he was vastly disappointed. There was even a website growing large in popularity created to get Thompson fired.

Now, Aaron Rodgers and company have made the playoffs the past five years in a row, won a Super Bowl, and have the greatest player in the game on the field.

The crosshairs are now zooming in on his draft and develop strategy. It’s difficult to understand why you wouldn’t want to overpay a free agent who hasn’t been proven in your system. They only take up cap space so you can’t keep developing talent in your organization. It’s not like those free agents come in and prevent other young players from developing.

To have the draft and develop strategy succeed, you must have a good evaluator of talent. Too bad the Packers have Thompson. Rodgers, Jennings, Matthews, Nelson, Cobb, Sitton, Hyde, Lacy, and Bakhtiari were all terrible picks by the general manager.

To make things worse, he went out and signed undrafted players like Sam Shields and Tramon Williams instead of paying big bucks for Nnamdi Asomugha.  

Injuries have also never plagued development of his recent first and second round picks. Perry, Bulaga, Sherrod, Worthy, Neal, Datone Jones, and Casey Hayward were lucky a season-ending injury never set them a year or two back. Why aren’t they developing?

The Pittsburg Steelers general manager, Kevin Colbert, said this was the deepest draft in the past 30 years. The Packers organization should be wary. Sadly, unlike Colbert, Thompson is not excellent evaluator of talent. Last years draft class was said to be weak, bringing extreme unfortunate for the Packers. They screwed up big time by taking Jones, Lacy, Hyde, Franklin, and Bakhtiari.

With this draft loaded with talent, expect Thompson to get lucky on maybe one player. The Packers should be getting an extra third and fifth round picking compensation for losing Jennings and Walden. That’s like throwing two extra needles in the haystack. Have fun digging, Ted Thompson.



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Tags: Green Bay Packers Ted Thompson

  • Packamaniac

    Lacy and Rodgers fell to Thompson.

    • NJPackFan

      Rodgers fell to Thompson, Lacy did not. TT knew where Lacy would be, traded back in the second, picked up a 4th round pick for trading back, and drafted Lacy.

    • Nevin Paustian

      They fell to thompson? Lacy was passed over because of an injury concern. Ted not only picked lacy but he did it after trading to the end of the 2nd round to acquire more picks. Did cobb, nelson, jones, hayward, daniels, and hyde all just fall to thompson too? It’s not luck. Go be a bears fan.

    • JoeNo

      If TT had passed Rodgers would have fallen to the next GM. The point is, he didn’t fall, TT was the first GM to take the most talented player available.

  • Guest

    Rodgers fell to Thompson, Lacy did not. Thompson knew where Lacy would be, traded back in the second, picked up a 4th round pick for trading back, and drafted Lacy.

    • sudburyyahoo

      Thompson stuck to his draft board in 2005. At pick 24, Rodgers was probably the best player available based on talent AND need.

  • Peter Maiz

    Julian Peppers. Good pick but for 3 years? Lacy is a great edition but the Pack runs the risk that he’ll eventually end up missing half a toe which is ok if it doesn’t affect his talents and cutting abilities. But please, TT, another great impact player at defense, esp. at safety but make sure he’s not as you, TT

    • J. McG

      It’s not *really* a 3-year deal. It’s basically a 1-year deal, with an option for 2 and 3 years.
      He’s only counting 3.5 million against the cap this year, and the Bears are paying most of his salary.
      Lacy is gonna be just fine.
      If everyone stays healthy, and the first-rounders start playing to their draft position?
      Look out.

      • Peter Maiz

        Yeah, now I realize, J. you’re absolutely right. If Julius gives us, say, two solid years, watch out. If our defense improves, we won’t depend on Rodgers to put up lots of points to win!

  • billy

    ok, we get it, he’s the greatest thing ever to hit the NFL…and he’s your uncle…hope he does hit this year the draft and develop mantra has to be more than three/four years to develop or Rodgers will be gone…He’s a three ring QB….hope he adds another ring this year..

  • sudburyyahoo

    “Genius” is a very overused word. Thompson has a plan and he sticks to his plan. He’s smart, he’s dedicated, he’s a good evaluator of talent and character, nothing more.