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GREEN BAY, Wis. — It isn’t a first-round receiver, however for the Inexperienced Bay Packers, it is the next-best factor.
Really, the second-next-best factor.
Packers basic supervisor Brian Gutekunst, who ran the group’s streak of not drafting a receiver within the first spherical to twenty years on Thursday, did not wait lengthy to make a transfer Friday. He despatched each of his second-round picks (Nos. 53 and 59) to the rival Minnesota Vikings for the thirty fourth general choose and used it on North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson.
Watson was the seventh receiver taken within the draft, and the primary on Day 2.
Watson grew to become the newest second-round receiver drafted by the Packers, becoming a member of the likes of Davante Adams (No. 53 general in 2014), Randall Cobb (No. 64 in 2011) and Jordy Nelson (No. 36 in 2008) — all of whom have been favourite targets of star quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
“We have had a number of success with second- and third-round receivers in Inexperienced Bay,” Rodgers mentioned Thursday evening on Pat McAfee’s SiriusXM and YouTube present after the Packers did not take a receiver within the first spherical. “You take a look at Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, James Jones within the third spherical [in 2007], clearly Davante Adams within the second spherical. These guys turned out fairly good.”
Now, Watson simply has to determine find out how to jell with Rodgers, one thing that previously has taken time for younger receivers.
“I will say I am able to work,” Watson mentioned when requested what he’ll inform Rodgers once they meet. “I am able to be taught and I am able to get after it. I do know he is gonna be robust on me and that is precisely what I need. I need somebody who’s gonna proceed to push me to be the absolute best participant that I may be, and I do know that with him being one of many best that he is gonna get the whole lot out of me, so shoot, I am gonna inform him I am able to work and shoot, I am able to go.”
Watson’s father, Tim, was a sixth-round choose of the Packers in 1993 as a security. Though his father by no means performed for the Packers, he did have transient stints with the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs, New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles that totaled 13 video games from 1993 to 1997.
When requested whether or not his dad nonetheless has some Packers gear, Watson mentioned: “I positively assume he does. That was a giant accomplishment for him. It is his roots, so he positively holds on to it. I am certain he is received a number of inexperienced and yellow round the home to throw on when he will get dwelling.”
The 6-foot-4, 208-pound Watson caught 43 passes for 801 yards with seven touchdowns final season for North Dakota State, which gained the FCS nationwide title. In 4 years for the Bison, he averaged 20.4 yards per catch and in addition had two profession kickoff returns for touchdowns.
“His bodily attributes and his athleticism are going to make it lots simpler [to contribute immediately] from anyone that is 6-foot, 185 kilos,” Packers director of soccer operations Milt Hendrickson mentioned. “He is simply not that; he is a giant man.”
This offseason, the Packers traded Adams, who needed out, to the Las Vegas Raiders. The 53rd choose, which was despatched to Minnesota, was a part of that commerce with Las Vegas, together with No. 22 general. Inexperienced Bay additionally misplaced receivers Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Equanimeous St. Brown in free company.
The Packers’ prime returning receiver is Allen Lazard, who had 40 catches for 513 yards and eight touchdowns final season. No different wideout presently on Inexperienced Bay’s roster, together with newcomer Sammy Watkins, had as many as 400 yards receiving final season.
Inexperienced Bay did not tackle the receiver subject Thursday and as a substitute targeted on protection within the first spherical by taking a pair of Georgia teammates, utilizing the twenty second general choice on linebacker Quay Walker and taking sort out Devonte Wyatt at No. 28.
The Packers have not chosen a large receiver within the first spherical since taking Florida State’s Javon Walker twentieth general in 2002.
However that is the very best the Packers have taken a receiver for the reason that Walker choose. Whereas Hendrickson would not say whether or not the Packers tried to commerce again into the primary spherical on Thursday to choose Watson, he did carry up one thing his outdated boss with the Baltimore Ravens, Ozzie Newsome, used to say.
“I spent a number of years in Baltimore and [Newsome] would at all times say, ‘A choose is only a choose till it turns into a participant,'” Hendrickson mentioned. “And from that standpoint, for those who love the participant, you simply discover a option to get him.”
Info from Related Press was used on this report.
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