RD 2: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana
Why they picked Spriggs
On paper, this pick may seem like one for the future, but looking back at the 2015 season when Green Bay was hit with a rush of late-season injuries on the offensive line and didn’t have a viable backup at tackle, Spriggs could offer an immediate impact as a rookie.
He’s perhaps the most athletic tackle in the 2016 class, and he has all of the physical tools to play on either the right or left side of the line. It’s easy to see why the Packers traded up to select him in the middle of the second round.
A 6-foot-6, 300-pound tackle that runs a 4.94 with a 35-inch vertical and 4.44 short shuttle is well worth a closer look. Spriggs’ upside is tremendous, but he may need a year or two before he sees significant playing time.
He still gets a bit sloppy with his technique, and he could serve to add some weight to his slim frame by offensive lineman standards. However, the good thing about the downsides to Spriggs’ game are they’re coachable and can be easily addressed with more experience in the league.
Spriggs’ role in 2016
Spriggs is more than just a developmental prospect who provides some insurance at left tackle just in case David Bakhtiari leaves in free agency. He gives the Packers a viable option at tackle if either Bakhtiari or Bryan Bulaga go down during the season.
Spriggs is talented enough to hold his own on the edge, but it would also be interesting to see if he could make the move to guard eventually, considering the Packers’ contract situation with starters Josh Sitton and T.J. Lang. There’s a good chance at least one of the two will be gone after the 2016 season.
Top backup JC Tretter may also depart in free agency, but my hunch is that the Packers figure out a long-term deal with Bakhtiari.
This means, however, Spriggs’ future may be at guard on the Packers offensive line. However, he’s going to have to show in training camp this summer he can make the move inside if needed.
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