Packers: 2021 draft class grades following the regular season

Green Bay Packers, Eric Stokes - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Green Bay Packers, Eric Stokes - Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

With Week 18 only a few days away, the Green Bay Packers have had yet another successful NFL regular season. The team, pending a probable win against the Detroit Lions this week, will go 14-3 and won the NFC North for the third year in a row.

The Pack is widely regarded as the best team in football rolling into this year’s playoffs – but as we’ve seen before, that doesn’t always translate to the success they’re looking for.

The Packers’ 2021 draft class was very up and down. There are some players that haven’t played a single down for the team, while there’s also some players that have turned into big-time starters.

That being said, let’s grade the Packers’ 2021 Draft Class based on their regular season performance.

LB Isaiah McDuffie, CB Shemar Jean-Charles, G Cole Van Lanen: N/A

These three players were all picked in the later rounds of the 2021 NFL Draft and haven’t got much, if any, playing time. Isaiah McDuffie hasn’t played a single snap, Cole Van Lanen has taken a singular (1) snap, and Shemar Jean Charles has only played 32 snaps. Therefore, these players can’t receive a grade.

RB/Returner Kylin Hill: D+

Kylin Hill went down with a season-ending knee injury in Week 8 against the Arizona Cardinals. Prior to that, Hill didn’t see much action on the offensive side of the ball — but did show some excellent kick return skills.

On 10 kick returns, Hill managed to amass 199 yards. In Week 2, he had a 41-yard return against the Lions when the team needed it the most. But aside from those 199 kick return yards, Hill didn’t get the opportunity to produce much as he was the team’s third-string running back.

DT Tedarrell Slaton: C-

In playing 222 defensive snaps this year, Tedarrell Slaton has been average at best. He’s produced one sack, two pressures, and 21 tackles – which is fine for a backup defensive tackle. I’m interested to see how Slaton’s future with the Packers plays out.

G Royce Newman: C-

Royce Newman, like most later-round rookies, has been a difficult player to grade all season. While there are some games that make him look like a future star, there are other games that make it look like he should be on the practice squad.

Newman’s pass blocking seems to be his niche over run blocking. If he continues to improve in both assets though, he’ll continue to be a starter on the team for the foreseeable future.

WR Amari Rodgers: D-

I had really high hopes for Amari Rodgers, especially considering that he’s the highest drafted Packers receiver since Davante Adams. Unfortunately, Rodgers hasn’t looked good — at all.

With only 72 offensive snaps played, Rodgers has amassed a grand total of three catches for 40 yards. Along with that, he’s fumbled twice — with one of those balls being lost.

On special teams, Rodgers had quite a few kick and punt returns. On the kick return side, the former Clemson WR has had nine returns for 151 yards. On the punt return side, Rodgers has 19 returns for 143 yards. While these numbers aren’t anything special, there was some promise shown there.

G Josh Myers: B-

With the small sample size we got from Josh Myers in the beginning of the regular season, I think he could be the latest offensive line ‘steal’ that fell into the Packers’ lap.

Myers was excellent in the pass blocking game and seemed to be improving in the run game every week. The team is expecting to get Myers back for the playoffs, so it’ll be interesting to see how he plays in that environment.

CB Eric Stokes: B+

While I think the future is very bright for Eric Stokes, he’s currently playing the role of an ‘unfinished product’. He’s playing very good football, but I believe he can only get even better if he cleans up some of his play.

According to Pro Football Reference, Stokes has allowed a 48.9% completion percentage on the season and has given up a 71.2 passer rating. And these are the numbers with him starting for the vast majority of the season. Along with Patrick Surtain and Greg Newsome, Stokes is one of the best rookie cornerbacks of the entire 2021 draft class.