Packers trade up to select CB Jaire Alexander in first round of 2018 NFL Draft

CLEMSON, SC - OCTOBER 01: Jaire Alexander
CLEMSON, SC - OCTOBER 01: Jaire Alexander /

The Green Bay Packers selected cornerback Jaire Alexander in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft after trading twice.

So here it is. Brian Gutekunst has finally made his first selection as general manager of the Green Bay Packers. And it came a little later than expected.

First, the Packers traded away the 14th overall pick to the New Orleans Saints, receiving a fifth-round pick and a 2019 first-rounder. They then traded back up to No. 18 with the Seattle Seahawks to get Jaire Alexander.

In the trade, Green Bay sent away a third-rounder and sixth-rounder, receiving the 18th overall pick and a seventh-round selection.

Here is what Lance Zierlein of wrote about Green Bay’s top choice in his draft profile:

"“Twitchy and quick, Alexander is an instinctive cornerback with the ability to anticipate routes and the quickness to close on throws and make plays on the ball. He tape in 2017 was uneven due to issues with a sprained knee which could raise concerns over his durability considering his slender build.”"

So, Alexander becomes the first player to be drafted by Gutekunst. The Packers’ new GM needs to make his first draft class a strong one. It could make the difference between a serious Super Bowl push and falling just short.

The Cleveland Browns surprised many by selecting cornerback Denzel Ward at No. 4, passing up on the draft’s top edge rusher Bradley Chubb. Ward would have been an ideal addition to Green Bay’s defense. The fact he was gone could have played into the decision to move around with two trades.

A number of top defensive prospects then came off the board. Chubb went at No. 5 to the Denver Broncos, and potential Green Bay target Minkah Fitzpatrick was selected by the Miami Dolphins at No. 11. Tampa Bay selected defensive lineman Vita Vea a pick later, which came as a bit of a surprise.

With Tremaine Edmunds and Derwin James left on the board, Gutekunst made a huge decision to trade down 13 spots. But he finally moved back up to land Alexander. What an interesting night it has been.

The upcoming two days are going to be a lot of fun. How will Gutekunst look to build on his first-round selection? Make sure you stay tuned to Lombardi Ave throughout the 2018 NFL Draft.

What are your thoughts on Alexander?