Packers chances of drafting top prospect with local ties just increased dramatically

Green Bay Packers
Green Bay Packers / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Running back is an offseason need for the Green Bay Packers. AJ Dillon is an unrestricted free agent, and his Packers future is uncertain.

Aaron Jones put together the best five-game stretch of his NFL career to close out the season, almost certainly earning him another year in Green Bay. But the Packers need to strengthen the running back room around Jones.

There was a clear decline in efficiency when he wasn't on the field. Jones averaged 4.6 yards per carry this season and 5.73 over the final five games. Dillon averaged just 3.4 yards per attempt.

It remains to be seen whether the Packers will re-sign Dillon. If they don't, they will likely target a bigger running back in the draft.

"I do think we would always like to have one power, bigger back on the roster for short-yardage situations and playing in the weather and closing out games," said general manager Brian Gutekunst, per

That would rule out several talented running backs in this year's class, but the Packers may have interest in a prospect who is used to playing in Wisconsin.

Packers may have interest in Wisconsin running back Braelon Allen to replace AJ Dillon

Wisconsin running back Braleon Allen is a potential Day 2 target for the Packers in the 2024 NFL Draft. He would be an ideal replacement for Dillon.

Allen is 6-foot-2, 235 pounds, and can help any offense in short-yardage situations. According to The Athletic's Dane Brugler, 69.5 percent of Allen's yardage came after contact last season. That's what the Packers need in cold-weather games at Lambeau Field—a running back who can break tackles and wear down defenses.

Marcus Mosher of The 33rd Team compared Allen to Dillon.

"Both have exceptional contact balance and run through arm tackles via their lower-body strength. Allen is a punishing runner who constantly seeks out contact and wants to overwhelm smaller defenders," writes Mosher.

Allen would be an ideal complement for Jones, who uses his speed, vision, and explosiveness to regularly finish as one of the league's most efficient running backs—Jones has a career average of five yards per carry.

The Packers will likely have interest in drafting a running back. Based on Gutekunst's comments, it won't be surprising if they target Allen on Day 2 or 3.

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