The Green Bay Packers enter the 2021 NFL Draft with a healthy 10 picks in total. Along with owning their original picks in all seven rounds, the Packers also have three bonus selections in the fourth, fifth, and sixth rounds.
But will the Packers use all 10 of these selections?
Recent history suggests the answer is no. Since general manager Brian Gutekunst took over the job in 2018, the Packers have often traded up. In fact, they’ve done so in the first round every year so far under Gutekunst.
Under Gutekunst, his first three drafts tells us one thing. We should always be prepared for him to trade up for a prospect he likes. With 10 picks in this year’s draft, it will be no surprise at all if it happens again.
Don’t just take my word for it, either. Gutekunst said as much earlier this week.
“I feel like we’re going to be able to move around the board a little bit to get the players we want,” Gutekunst told Larry McCarren of Packers.com.
“With the added picks, I think if there’s a player we need to go up to get, we’ll be able to do it.”
Gutekunst also noted that it’s more challenging when you’re picking at the bottom of each round as the Packers are based on their deep playoff run in 2020.
And that’s why it makes all the more sense to take advantage of the double-digit picks in the bank to trade up where possible. Rather than sitting back and watching many of the top players in the class come off the board, be proactive, make a move and land a potential difference-maker in the early rounds.
That doesn’t necessarily mean Green Bay will trade up, of course. If a deal isn’t there to be done, it won’t happen.
But recent history, plus the Packers’ group of picks this year, suggests they are in position to move up again. Perhaps the quality, not quantity approach will continue in 2021.