Packers given worst NFC North grade by NFL.com for 2020 draft
Almost a year on, the conversation about the Green Bay Packers‘ 2020 draft class remains mostly the same.
There’s no doubt the draft class was a surprising one. With wide receiver, defensive tackle, and inside linebacker considered by many to be the team’s biggest needs, it wasn’t expected that the Packers would go quarterback, running back, and tight end/fullback in the opening rounds.
With one season played since then, the Packers are still receiving bad grades for the draft class.
Gennaro Filice of NFL.com graded each rookie class in the NFC North after the 2020 season, and the Packers predictably have the worst grade of the four, receiving a D+ for their class.
The Minnesota Vikings led the way with an A- grade, unsurprising after what looks to be a strong class headlined by second-team All-Pro and Pro Bowler Justin Jefferson. Jefferson put together the most impressive rookie season by a wide receiver since Odell Beckham Jr. in 2014.
The Packers lose marks for the lack of playing time from their early picks.
Jordan Love didn’t play a single snap. AJ Dillon was the third-string running back. Josiah Deguara played two games before getting hurt.
But I’d argue it’s not totally fair to make that assessment. While this could absolutely prove to be a disappointing draft class, it’s too early to say.
Love was never going to play this season. That’s not the reason why the Packers drafted him. They’re aiming to transition to another franchise QB in the same way they did from Brett Favre to Aaron Rodgers. It might not pay off, but I don’t blame them for trying. Love is a QB they see potential in, so why not go for it? It could lead to many years of staying competitive if it works out.
Dillon was another pick for the future. And with Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams set to hit free agency, it doesn’t look so bad now. Especially given the potential Dillon showed in year one.
Deguara, meanwhile, actually played well in the limited game time he had. It’s clear Matt LaFleur has a lot planned for Deguara all over the field as a blocker, fullback, receiver, you name it. We saw glimpses of this but Deguara tore his ACL and didn’t get much time on the field.
Sure, the Packers didn’t get much from their 2020 class in their rookie seasons. But this group still has potential moving forward.