Packers 2018 Draft: Why Green Bay should draft Shaquem Griffin

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 01: Shaquem Griffin
ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 01: Shaquem Griffin /

The Green Bay Packers and Shaquem Griffin are a great match.

This seems like the type of pick the Green Bay Packers would make.

Nothing has ever come easy for Shaquem Griffin. From the very start, life has presented trials and obstacles, and he has always overcome them. Before he was born, he suffered from amniotic band syndrome, where tissue wrapped around his left wrist cutting off blood circulation.  His hand was severely deformed and was always in extreme pain. He dealt with that pain until he was four, when his family decided that it was best to have his left hand amputated.

Griffin was determined to pursue his dreams of playing football. He learned to do everything as good or better than his twin brother, Shaquill. Both brothers were recruited to UCF in 2013, but Shaquem only saw the field three times in his first two seasons. He considered just giving up his dream, but his brother never gave up and encouraged him to keep fighting.

In 2016 Scott Frost took over UCF and saw some great potential in Shaquem. He decided to move him from defensive back to linebacker. That is when Griffin began to shine.

Since 2016, he has had 100 solo tackles, 18.5 sacks (11.5 in 2016 alone) two INTs and a touchdown. He was named the 2016 ACC Defensive Player of the Year as well. In this year’s Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl, Griffin had six tackles and 1.5 sacks to help UCF beat Auburn 34-27.

ATLANTA, GA – JANUARY 1: Shaqueem Griffin
ATLANTA, GA – JANUARY 1: Shaqueem Griffin /

He is viewed by many as a fourth or fifth round pick but more often than not, he plays at a much higher level than that. In a mock draft that fellow Lombardi Ave writer Michael Seney and I did, we both predicted that he would be drafted by Green Bay in the fifth round. You can read that article by clicking here.

The Packers have taken risks before

He is judged (wrongly) by many based only on his physical handicap. But he has spent his life proving the doubters wrong.

His story and his skill fit perfectly with the history of Green Bay.

The Packers have always represented the spirit of America and in America we root for the underdog.

When Brett Favre was drafted by the Falcons, they were told that he wouldn’t have a long career due to a hip problem. Ron Wolf took a chance on him and it paid dividends for the Packers.

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Shaquem Griffin can be a true asset to the team and would help bolster a struggling pass rush.