Perfect Picks 2024: Green Bay Packers

Last season was always going to be a big year for the Packers and it feels safe to say that this young group surpassed expectations. Not only did they make it to the playoffs and pull off a wild card win over the Cowboys, but they also confirmed they have their franchise quarterback of the future in Jordan Love.

Green Bay now has a great opportunity to build on that success with a boatload of draft capital. As things stand they have 11 picks. Five of those come inside the top 100, with only Arizona boasting more.

As part of our Perfect Picks series, Jack Brentnall gives his selections for the Packers’ 2024 NFL Draft, as well as going in-depth on four of the selections.

Round 1 - Troy Fautanu, OT, Washington

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In last year’s draft, the Packers did an excellent job of surrounding Jordan Love with a bevy of young pass-catching talent. One of their jobs for this year’s draft is to make sure their franchise quarterback is protected in the pocket.

David Bakhtiari has struggled to stay healthy, playing in just 13 games over the last three seasons. Whilst rookie seventh-rounder Rasheed Walker vastly outperformed expectations last year, Green Bay would still be smart to invest further in the position.

Fautanu has some of the most impressive tape in this year’s offensive line class. He was a central piece of Washington’s Joe Moore Award-winning offensive line, starting all 15 games. In that time he allowed just two sacks and three quarterback hits.

Fautanu is an excellent athlete too, something that fits well with a diverse Packers offense that thrives on the ability of its linemen to get out in space and dominate. He also has the heavy hands to stonewall rushers in pass protection and create movement in the running game.

There will be some debate as to whether Fautanu’s future is best spent at tackle or guard, but the Packers could do with help at both spots and Fautanu is a tremendous talent.

Round 2 - Tyler Nubin, S, Minnesota

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There might not be a bigger need than safety on the Packers’ roster this offseason. Both of their starters from last season are due to hit free agency. They are also shifting to a new scheme under defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley that requires a true roaming centrefield safety.

Using a second-round pick on a player like Nubin would therefore be a smart move. The Minnesota star made a name for himself in college with some of the most impressive ball production you’ll see from a defensive back

He logged 13 interceptions and 13 pass breakups on just 87 career targets. He allowed a passer rating of 37.6 throughout his career – for context, the passer rating on a throwaway is 39.6.

Nubin is a talented athlete, with good range and the fluid movement skills that the Packers crave. He could slot right into the defensive backfield on day one and become a star of Jeff Hafley’s new-look unit.

Mid Round Gem - Max Melton, CB, Rutgers

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The Packers might have Jaire Alexander as their alpha outside cornerback, but there are still some question marks about who plays opposite him and who can start in the slot. That’s where a guy like Melton comes in.

Melton was one of the standout performers at this year’s Combine, running a 4.39 40-yard dash and ranking in the 92nd and 98th percentile for the vertical and broad jump respectively. That athleticism translates to the tape too, with Melton showing the reactive athleticism you want at cornerback.

His willingness to get downhill and play the run, as well as his alignment versatility make him a perfect fit for this Packers team.

On top of all that, there is also a family connection – Max’s older brother Bo plays wide receiver in Green Bay. Those practice battles would certainly be fun!

Late Round Sleeper - Rasheen Ali, RB, Marshall

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Aaron Jones is likely to return for 2024 but he turns 30 this year and the Packers need to start succession planning. They are also set to lose AJ Dillon in free agency.

In this draft I had them double dip at running back, taking Tennessee’s Jaylen Wright in the third round and one of my favourite late round sleepers in the sixth.

If you enjoy watching running backs then go and turn on Ali’s highlights from his 2021 season. That year he rushed for 1,389 yards and a nation-leading 23 touchdowns on 250 carries. He also showed that he can be an effective pass catcher, chipping in with 344 yards on 46 receptions.

Ali showcases outstanding vision and understands how to pace his runs to maximise gains. He is also a legitimate speed demon, competing as part of Marshall’s track team and running a sub-seven second 60 metre dash.

He does come with some injury concerns – he missed most of the 2022 season and tore his bicep at the Senior Bowl – as well as some ball security issues, but if you can find a player with his combination of speed and vision this late in the draft you bet on the upside.

Draft in full

Round 1 – Troy Fautanu, OT, Washington

Round 2 – Tyler Nubin, S, Minnesota

Round 2 – Junior Colson, LB, Michigan

Round 3 – Jaylen Wright, RB, Tennessee

Round 3 – Max Melton, CB, Rutgers

Round 4 – Khristian Boyd, IDL, Northern Iowa

Round 5 – Jaheim Bell, TE, Florida State

Round 6 – Javion Cohen, IOL, Miami

Round 6 – Rasheen Ali, RB, Marshall

Round 7 – Kitan Oladapo, S, Oregon State

Round 7 – Will Reichard, K, Alabama

Jack Brentnall