Ray Rivard: DT Vernon Butler, Louisiana Tech
It’s difficult to project just who might be left by the time the draft gets to the Packers pick at #27, but it’s quite probable that there could be as many as a handful of defensive linemen already off the board. That said, there are a ton of D-linemen who could be considered great picks at the end of the first round, including Vernon Butler.
Here’s a guy with size, girth and athleticism. Because of the fact that Packers D-linemen Mike Pennel (four-game suspension) and B.J. Raji (one-year hiatus) won’t be available for either part or all of 2016, the Packers have to go out and grab a defensive lineman — though we all know the holes the franchise must fill at tight end and linebacker — not to mention offensive line.
While deep down inside I hope Ted Thompson trades back into the second round to get his tight end and a defensive end deeper into the draft, that probably won’t happen. That’s why he should stick with the routine and select a defensive lineman at #27. In my estimation, Butler should be that guy.
Next: Dan Dahlke