Develop young talent
The Packers have committed a number of early draft selections on defense in recent years, and it’s important to ensure each player continues to develop.
In last year’s class, Ted Thompson hit a home run early on cornerbacks Damarious Randall and Quinten Rollins. Both are set for bright futures and should return as more polished players in 2016. Behind them was second-year Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, who made huge strides. He has the potential to become one of the best safeties in the league.
Inside linebacker Jake Ryan came on late in the season and needs to carry that through into the offseason; the Packers need him to help address one of the biggest weaknesses on defense. Datone Jones is entering the final year on his rookie deal, as is Micah Hyde. Both will be playing for their futures.
In a draft-and-develop system, the Packers need to rely on their young players to produce. Developing their talents and becoming better players – as we saw with Clinton-Dix last season – is crucial for the defense to continue its rise into one of the league’s best.
The Packers had a poor defense in 2013, a better one in 2014 and a good one in 2015. Now it needs to become a consistent top-ten unit.