Round 2 (62) Josh Myers, C, Ohio State
Round 3 (85) Amari Rodgers, WR, Clemson
The Packers continued to get immediate impact players on Day 2 of the draft, first selecting center Josh Myers from Ohio State with the 62nd overall pick and then wide receiver Amari Rodgers in Round 3 at pick No. 85 after a trade up with the Titans.
After drafting departed center Corey Linsley in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft, the Packers found his successor from the same school seven years later (and both players wore No. 71 in college). Myers is not only a day one starter for the Packers, but he gives Green Bay tremendous versatility along the offensive line. With the center position solidified, it’s no longer a question whether Elgton Jenkins or Lucas Patrick will need to slide over from their starting guard spots. It’s possible Jenkins could start the season at either tackle spot now that his services won’t be needed at center.
Ian Cummings of Pro Football Network writes “The offensive line is important. By extension, careful and consistent maintenance of that line is just as important. Josh Myers is a good pick for teams looking to perform that maintenance. He can adequately start at center while also providing depth along the interior.”
This is perhaps an important note. While Myers is listed as a center, the Packers haven’t actually committed to him playing center for Green Bay. Rather, they reemphasized the versatility he brings to the line and his ability to also play either guard spot.
With Ohio State, Myers earned second-team All-Big Ten honors in 2019. Per Pro Football Focus, he played all 1,511 of his snaps at center in college and allowed only six sacks on 755 pass blocking snaps.
Interestingly, Myers missed out on the Senior Bowl with a toe injury, and that toe injury brought him to Green Bay to visit renowned foot surgeon Dr. Robert Anderson. While he was there, Myers definitely considered the possibility that he could end up getting drafted by the Packers, saying “I absolutely knew there was a chance, which was super exciting for me and my family to go there and see Lambeau Field.”
After shoring up the offensive line, the Packers turned to another position of need and grabbed receiver Amari Rodgers in the third round. The A. Rodgers to A. Rodgers jokes write themselves, so we don’t need to make another one here, though Amari did say “of course I want to catch passes from the reigning MVP.” He added the respect he has for new teammate Davante Adams and that he watches his film constantly as the best receiver in the league currently.
Per PFF, Amari Rodgers had 68 receptions from the slot last season, the most in college football. His NFL comp? Randall Cobb. While his relative athletic score (RAS) might not fit the traditional Brian Gutekunst pick with a 5.37, he’s a dynamic fit to Matt LaFleur’s offense. The 5-9, 212lb receiver can immediately come in and fill the “Tyler Ervin” role in motion.
He’s productive after contact, going for 667 yards after contact in his last three seasons, which was good for second in college football behind only first-round pick Devonta Smith with 770 yards (Per Ben Fennell of NFL Network).
Rodgers led the ACC in receptions in 2020 with 77 and ranked second in the ACC in receiving yards with 1,020. He also averaged 13.2 yards per reception and posted seven touchdowns. Beyond his receiving ability, Rodgers also returned kickoffs and punts during his freshman and sophomore seasons, taking one punt for a touchdown in 2018. He led the NCAA and ACC in both punt returns and punt return yards during that 2018 season.
In an interview with Brandon Marshall at the House of Athlete Scouting Combine Showcase last month, Rodgers was asked his dream landing spot in the NFL. His response? Going to the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers is still young at only 21 years old and provides immediate depth at the receiver position. While a Davante Adams extension is likely, Rodgers is currently the only wide receiver under contract for 2022 and beyond.
In stark contrast from the 2020 NFL Draft where the Packers emphasized adding depth for the future, so far all three 2021 selections have been at positions of need where each draft pick has a chance to start right away. Green Bay has six picks remaining going into Day 3 of the draft after giving up a fourth as part of the trade up for Rodgers.
Maggie Loney is a writer for Cheesehead TV and podcaster for the Pack-A-Day Podcast and Pack’s What She Said. Find her on Twitter at @MaggieJLoney.