The Green Bay Packers have traded down 13 spots with the New Orleans Saints in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.
The Packers had the chance to select either safety Derwin James or linebacker Tremaine Edmunds. Instead, they traded down 13 spots, picking up an additional fifth-rounder and 2019 first-round pick from the Saints.
This is an interesting move by new general manager Brian Gutekunst to say the least.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Network provided the full details of the trade on Twitter:
New Orleans used the 14th selection to select edge rusher Marcus Davenport, a player many had mocked to the Packers.
Clearly, Gutekunst wasn’t thrilled with the defensive players remaining on the board.
Cornerback Denzel Ward went at No. 4 to the Cleveland Browns. A pick later the Denver Broncos selected edge rusher Bradley Chubb. With linebacker Roquan Smith and safety Minkah Fitzpatrick also gone, Gutekunst decided the best move was to trade down.
This now means the Packers own 13 picks in this year’s draft, as well as two first-round selections in 2019.
With so many picks in play, don’t be surprised if Gutekunst looks to trade up at some point in this year’s event.
Green Bay had a chance to land one of the draft’s premier defensive players. James would have been an excellent addition to the secondary. But that will not be the case, so it seems.
A year ago, the Packers traded out of the first round entirely. They used their first second-round pick on cornerback Kevin King. Who will be the team’s opening selection in this year’s class?
It’s too early to make a judgement on this trade. The fact the Packers own two first-rounders in next year’s draft is great news. We can all root for the Saints to go 0-16 in 2018, handing Green Bay the No. 1 overall pick in next year’s draft.