Ted Thompson Vs. The NFL Trade Chart: Who’s More Obfuscated?

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“I’m convinced the articles I’ve seen like this are written by guys who have no actually gone through the trade value charts.  The Packers are going to be in a tough spot trying to trade up and will have to really overpay in number of selections to do it.”  

– Jeremy, April 14th, 2012 12:27; in reference to the Packers trading picks to move back up into the 1st.


Challenge accepted!

  1. Would you believe me that overall, Ted Thompson isn’t very good at trading draft picks?
  2. Would you believe that Ted Thompson has been suckered in by other teams that have called and accepted less than he originally had?
  3. Would you believe that the single biggest mistake Ted Thompson has made on draft day was trading up for Clay Matthews III?

You’d think I was full of it, but its all true.

In reality, the trade value chart has become a staple of NFL draft fandom.  Some people swear by it while other people think its stupid to put a number on talent or potential.   But should we trust the chart and perhaps more importantly, does the chart make any sense in the modern era of football?

But first off a brief overview of the trade value chart.  The chart was purportedly invented by Dallas Cowboys head coach Jimmy Johnson (or an assistant under Johnson) in the 1990’s and was supposedly one of the reasons why the Cowboys were such a dominant team during the period.  During the NFL draft (which was a lot less sophisticated back in the 90’s) many teams didn’t actually know if a trade was good value or not; can you say (without looking) if the 38th pick is worth the 45th and 87th pick?  Even if you could work it out in your head, could you do it in the 15 minutes you had on the clock?  What the trade value chart allowed the Cowboys to do was roughly assess the value of a trade and see it was a good deal in a very short period of time.

However, many aspects of the trade chart are completely arbitrary.  There is no particular reason why the 1st overall draft choice is 3,000 points nor why the very last pick is only worth 2.  There is also no particular reason why the 1st overall pick is 400 points more than the 2nd overall pick, other than the fact that the value chart decays in a roughly logarithmically fashion (nor is there any real reason to believe that this is the best decay to use).   Furthermore it doesn’t take into account perhaps the most important aspect of the draft, which is the players themselves.  Obviously some years are better than others in terms of talent/potential/numbers and that affects how teams are going to trade picks.  A number of really talented quarterbacks would raise the value of draft picks while a number of really talented kickers isn’t likely to change it at all.

Finally and perhaps most importantly, the NFL draft value chart has remained unchanged (as far as I can tell), but the NFL has changed drastically in the last 20 years.  The old CBA made top tier draft picks prohibitively expensive while the new CBA probably has done the exact opposite.  Running backs are now less valuable while quarterbacks are players you mortgage your future on (see Chicago Bears, Oakland Raiders, Washington Redskins etc.) Kickers are…well maybe some things don’t change after all.

Going back to the Packers, and specifically general manager Ted Thompson, how well does Thompson fare in regards to draft pick trades?  Below is every draft pick trade that Ted Thompson has made during his tenure with the Packers. Trades involving picks in future years have been omitted since no one knows at that moment what the actual value of a future pick will be (for instance, no one knows what value the Packers 1st round pick will be in 2013 since it’s dependent on how well the team does in 2012).  Trades also involving players has also been omitted for the same reason that only the front offices of the respective teams knows what value has been assigned to those players. 


Panthers trade 2005 fourth round picks (#110-Marviel Underwood), (#121-Todd Herremans) to Packers for 2005 third round pick (#89-Atiyyah Ellison): -19

Packers trade 2005 fourth round pick (#121-Todd Herremans) to Eagles for 2005 fifth round pick (#159-Mike Hawkins), 2005 sixth round pick (#161-Anttaj Hawthorne), 2005 seventh round pick (#223-Kurt Campbell): +5.1

Patriots trade 2005 sixth round pick (#181-Craig Bragg), 2005 seventh round pick (#224-William Whitticker) to Packers for 2005 sixth round pick (#161-Anttaj Hawthorne): -6


Patriots trade 2006 second round pick (#52-Greg Jennings), 2006 third round pick (#75-Jason Spitz) to Packers for 2006 second round pick (#36-Chad Jackson): +55

Falcons trade 2006 second round pick (#47-Daryn Colledge), 2006 third round pick (#93-Dominique Byrd), 2006 fifth round pick (#143-Ingle Martin) to Packers for 2006 second round pick (#37-Jimmy Williams), 2006 fifth round pick (#134-Quinn Ojinnaka): +23.5

Rams trade 2006 fourth round pick (#108-Jason Avant), 2006 sixth round pick (#174-Johnny Jolly) to Packers for 2006 third round pick (#93-Dominique Byrd): -28.2

Eagles trade 2006 fourth round pick (#114-Will Blackmon), 2006 sixth round pick (#176-Tyrone Culver) to Packers for 2006 fourth round pick (#108-Jason Avant): +9


Jets trade 2007 second round pick (#63-Brandon Jackson), 2007 third round pick (#89-Aaron Rouse), 2007 sixth round pick (#177-Korey Hall) to Packers for 2007 second round pick (#47-David Harris), 2007 seventh round pick (#217-Chansi Stuckey): +7

Steelers trade 2007 fourth round pick (#116-Allen Barbre), 2007 sixth round pick (#178-Desmond Bishop) to Packers for 2007 fourth round pick (#109-Daniel Sepulveda): +6.2


Jets trade 2008 second round pick (#36-Jordy Nelson), 2008 fourth round pick (#110-Dwight Lowery) to Packers for 2008 first round pick (#30-Dustin Keller): -6

Packers trade 2008 fourth round pick (#110-Dwight Lowery), 2008 fifth round pick (#157-Erik Ainge) to Jets for 2008 fourth round pick (#99-Jeremy Thompson): +1.4

Rams trade 2008 fifth round pick (#130-John David Booty), 2008 seventh round pick (#202-Brett Swain) to Packers for 2008 fourth round pick (#126-Keenan Burton): +6.6

Vikings trade 2008 fifth round pick (#145-Breno Giacomini), 2008 seventh round pick (#194-Matt Flynn) to Packers for 2008 fifth round pick (#130-John David Booty): +5.3


Packers trade 2009 second round pick (#41-Darius Butler), 2009 third round pick (#73-Derek Cox), 2009 third round pick (#83-Brandon Tate) to Patriots for 2009 first round pick (#26-Clay Matthews), 2009 fifth round pick (#154-Jamon Meredith): -160.2


Packers trade 2010 third round pick (#86-Daniel Te’o-Nesheim), 2010 fourth round pick (#120-Mike Kafka) to Eagles for 2010 third round pick (#71-Morgan Burnett): +21


Broncos trade 2011 fifth round pick (#138-D.J. Williams), 2011 sixth round pick (#181-D.J. Smith) to Packers for 2011 fourth round pick (#128-Julius Thomas), 2011 seventh round pick (#193-Virgil Green): -2.2

49ers trade 2011 sixth round pick (#169-Charles Clay), 2011 seventh round pick (#222-Frank Kearse) to Packers for 2011 fifth round pick (#160-Daniel Kilgore): -1

Dolphins trade 2011 sixth round pick (#174-Caleb Schlauderaff), 2011 seventh round pick (#208-Ryan Taylor) to Packers for 2011 sixth round pick (#169-Charles Clay), 2011 seventh round pick (#222-Frank Kearse): +3.6


Overall the data is quite interesting:

  1. Overall, Ted Thompson isn’t very good at trading draft picks: Thompson has an average trade value of -4.83, meaning he’s on the losing end of a trade on average.  Even more interesting is that Thompson is very consistent at getting below average value during trades.  Below is a scatter plot comparing the value that Ted Thompson has gotten versus the value that the other GM has gotten in a trade: 
    As you can see, with a R2 value of .975, it can be said that Thompson is very consistent with his trades, but consistently poor from a draft trade value perspective.
  2. When another teams calls about a trade, sometimes Ted Thompson ends up with less than he started with: One of the principle tenants of trading in the NFL is that the “buyer” gives up more than expected in terms of value or else there’s no incentive for the “seller” to agree.  The prime example of this is when a team will trade a pick for future pick one round higher the next year (such as trading for a 2nd round pick this year for a 1st round pick next year).  However, Thompson has agreed to 7 trades where a team offered him less from a trade value perspective.
  3. The worst trade Thompson has ever made was to trade up for Clay Matthews:  This actually shocked me so much that I rechecked my math 3 times.  The Patriots got away with grand larceny by gaining an additional 160 points, which is equivalent to 3rd round pick in itself.  So another way of saying it is that the Packers actually gave up a 2nd rounder and 3 3rd rounder’s to get back into the first round and select Clay Matthews.

Ok, so I wrote the results with a hint of biased sarcasm, so from these results I’ve come up with conclusions

  1. Ted Thompson isn’t following the trade chart: Or perhaps more realistically Thompson isn’t following the publically available trade chart.  Considering that the NFL is a multi-billion dollar business with millions of dollars being spent on scouts, combines, pro-days, private workouts, interviews, film analysis, background and personality evaluation etc. you’d think that every team would have hired a statistician by now to go over the trade chart and see if it makes any sense.  In fact I would argue that every team probably has a statistician rework the trade chart every year to factor in new data.
  2. You have to be really sure about a player to move up and draft them: Moving back into the 1st round and drafting Clay Matthews III was probably the biggest risk that Ted Thompson has ever made as the GM of the Packers (outside of the whole Brett Favre thing maybe). Obviously in hindsight Matthews was worth it and more, but in 2009 that was a really ballsy move.  Looking at it from another way, if Thompson thought that Matthews was worth more than 160 points over what he traded to the Patriots, he must have thought that Matthews was going to go somewhere around 15-20 based on the trade chart.

So there you go, trade chart analyzed.  I think the main point to take is that it’s a potentially career ending risk to trade up back into the 1st round or really trade up in the 1st round in general.  However, if you presume that Ted Thompson is a good GM (which a Super Bowl win and a 15-1 team would likely attest to), then the draft chart isn’t the draft bible; it’s a good place to start, but a lot more goes into a trade than just value.  Just look at Clay Matthews III, the worst draft trade of the Thompson era.




Thomas Hobbes is a staff writer for Jersey Al’s AllGreenBayPackers.com.


43 thoughts on “Ted Thompson Vs. The NFL Trade Chart: Who’s More Obfuscated?

    1. Actually it’s quite surprising that there isn’t more research on draft trading, presumably it’s all locked up in team war rooms. It would be interesting to see if team initiating trades always get better value like we all imagined or if that’s just an artifact of what the media has told us.

      1. A better look at it draft data comes from looking at the success of the players drafted, and at what number. Much of this data is done by draftmetrics.com. According their their research, TT comes out ahead in value almost every time.
        As for the logarithmic decay, you hit the nail on the head, Mr. Hobbes, by saying the numbers are arbitrary. In fact, unusual value is given to the first few picks.
        I’m sure, by now, all teams have their own mathematician to punch numbers and evaluate the draft. Well maybe not the Chiefs, Raiders, and Redskins.

        1. Actually an article was published on how Reggie McKenzie is currently working on building a war room for the Raiders, because apparently the Raiders don’t have one.

  1. I’m not graph expert nor a mathetician but I feel the one thing you cannot equate into the chart is what TTs options were as to available trade partners and of those who had the spots he felt were needed to secure a player or better enable his chance of getting said player.These are things privy only to war room personnel and guess work at best for the fans to ponder and wonder the whys.
    So even though it appears TT has come out on the short end of the point chart,trading spots for an overall less equal in chart value spots says when TT trades up he its for need and not BPA and will take the hit to do so.
    Was CM3 a trade up for BPA or really of need to fill the need for OLB pass rushers while switching to a 3-4 defense.Having gotten lucky with Raji the getting hosed by the Pats was necessary and correct.
    I’ve said a couple times in other posts here that the value chart is a false barometer and simply coming up with trades based on the equal numbers of such to justify it,isn’t nearly the defining fact of trading picks whether up or down.
    If there’s a player you want,the last thing I’m doing is worrying how many chart points is at stake.Coming out of each draft with two viable players is a win and all others after that makes point chart fodder.

    1. I would say some trade partners are more likely than others. For instance, the Packers often have dealings with the Eagles and the Seahawks, which makes sense as Andy Reid and the Seattle front office have ties back to the front office in Green Bay. I’d also assume that factors in to the equation a bit; Thompson would rather get less value from some he trusts rather than someone new GM he’s never gotten to know, lest the Ravens-Bears trade debacle happens. With that being said, maybe we should expect more trades with the Raiders and Browns soon.

  2. Nice objective article. As author Thomas alludes to, an unknown is also the number of similarly graded players a GM sees near his slotted draft spot. If a GM sees 10 comparably worthy players available when it’s time to draft, that GM would not see any value loss in sliding down 8 spots and picking up another pick even if value chart says it’s a bad deal. To the GM, he’s getting same value (all 10 players the same) plus the added pick – so a win.

    Same concepts (in reverse) when trading up. If GM sees only 1 player of value at a spot and then a big drop-off, the GM may think it’s worth packaging multiple picks to move up when value chart dictates against it.

    All GMs probably think the same, however. A psychological factor that could come into play to account for the -4.83 average trade value factor…could be that compared to most GMs, TT does more research and ‘knows’ the draft prospects better than others. Thus, he may ‘fall in love’ a bit more with a player and feel okay giving up some value on the charts; whereas another GM may not be as enamored with a player and not care as much if another team drafts the player instead of him, so he doesn’t give up the extra value and move up to ‘get’ the player. CMIII would be a classic example of this principle.

    1. Well when you compare all GMs the average trade value is 0 since every trade in essence cancels itself out. I would say realistically Thompson gets a pretty fair deal, -4.83 is basically worth the last couple picks in the draft, which usually isn’t any better than an undrafted rookie. I’d be a lot more worried if Thompson had a couple big negative splashes.

      1. Exactly…according to the trade value chart, TT basically gives away a mid/late 7th rounder, pick 216-ish, not accounting for compensatory picks. That’s not much to give away for the sake of getting the picks or player desired.

  3. Packers trade 2009 second round pick (#41-Darius Butler), 2009 third round pick (#73-Derek Cox), 2009 third round pick (#83-Brandon Tate) to Patriots for 2009 first round pick (#26-Clay Matthews)…

    Did you just say this was the worst trade TT ever made with a straight face?

    Look, I know you’re just going by the chart.. The chart is a guide. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s a tool, not the end-all, be-all.

    I’d hate to think of the Packers right now without Clay Matthews.

    Take into consideration this little tidbit:

    THe Packers had BJ Raji and Clay Matthews as a toss up at selection #9..

    Look at it this way:

    Packers trade #41,73,83 (490,225,175 pts, total: 890) for a player that they valued as worthy of a #9 overall pick (value:1,350) for a net gain of +460 in supposed “Trade Value”.

    According to the Packers’ board, the Clay Matthews trade was a superb value.. Right up TT’s alley.

    1. I was not able to say it with a straight face 😀 I haven’t heard that Matthews was ranked as highly as Raji. Furthermore, it’s not really the value of Matthews himself as opposed to the value of the trade picks. Maybe the Dolphins could have been persuaded to trade their pick for less value or maybe the Patriots don’t pick Matthews and some team lower down is willing to trade for less. Either way, from a simple perspective of draft pick value, with no players attached to it, the Patriots totally got the better end of the deal.

  4. Ow! My head hurts. Isn’t football supposed to be fun?

    TT is obviously a wuss, he always gets the short end of the “trade value” stick but still somehow manages to stumble upon guys like GJ,CM3 & Jordy.

    1. Football is fun! So is math! Ok not really. Actually, I would argue that it isn’t Thompson that is incorrect about drafting, it’s the trade chart that fans use. He’s likely on top when using his own trade chart (though it could be argued that you’d expect every GM to be ahead when using their own chart)

      1. Just what I was thinking, Thomas. Wouldn’t every GM have his own draft value chart, along with a corresponding player value chart for everybody on the board? If the player value exceeds the pick value(s), you make the trade. Ipso facto, you always come out ahead.

        1. I would guess that every team has their own chart AND the chart changes from year to year. Sometimes drafts are top heavy sometimes they are bottom heavy. It would not be that hard to grade players and adjust the trade chart according to your tiers. The hard part would be the grading, the chart would build itself after that.

  5. Great article!

    I think that it is worth noting–although outside the scope of this article–that it would be possible to both “gain” in terms of the traditional Trade Chart, as well as by gaining from being able to cherry pick players that have, in the GM’s opinion, slid too far (Clay Matthews).

    Just out of curiosity, I wonder how Bill Belichick does in terms of the traditional Trade Chart value?

    1. Lol, that would take me forever since the Patriots are basically the most active traders of the NFL draft. I would assume that overall, since the Patriots more often than not are the “seller” of draft picks would imply that they have a positive average draft value.

  6. While everyone is saying how out-of-date the trade value chart is, look at how closely on average these trades follow the chart.

    Imagine if Thomas had the time to evaluate every trade in the NFL over the last five years and come up with a new trade value chart, based on real statistics. Need a topic for a thesis, Thomas?

    1. Lol, if I was a statistician that might make a good thesis. I wonder if team’s trade charts end up looking the same since they are all based on the same data of what gets traded for what or do some teams hold picks at higher or lower value due to personal preference. For instance, if the Patriots think 1st round picks are worth less, that would be a good reason why they like to trade down so often.

  7. Football outsiders did a comprhensive study and the value chart and came to the conclusion that higher picks and overvalued per the chart. This was before the new CBA, which would make them higher still. Maybe Thompson understood this and decided to pull the trigger when he could not get more, understanding that he still was getting a good deal.

    1. Another way of putting it would be that he was a 3rd round pick sure that Matthews was worth more than what he had to give up. If that’s true then Thompson is still making a good trade in his mind, even if the value says otherwise (or you could say that he is betting a 3rd rounder on his assessment of Matthews)

    1. Well one thing going in your favor is that the Patriots love to deal around, so you should hope that some player falls (like an Upshaw) and some team gives an offer that the Patriots can’t refuse. Also keep in mind that the Patriots picking McClellin also means that there is one other player available; would you be unhappy if Perry, Upshaw, etc. were there instead?

        1. Okay, I should reword that: would Ted Thompson be unhappy with Perry, Upshaw etc instead of McClellin?

          1. Since nobody asked me…

            If TT suspects that the Patriots might take McClellin, and if he really wants him, he’ll move ahead of the Patriots.

            If he doesn’t move, he’s prepared to live with that risk.

  8. When a chart makes a tackle-for-loss, I’ll care.

    It’s not about the value of the picks. It’s about the value of the player.

    Everybody wants to compare the value of the PICKS we got, with the value of the picks they got. That’s wrong. Look at the value of the player. Was CM3 worth what Thompson gave up for him? Of course he was.

    Lesson: If the player is worth it, put that trade value chart in the garbage where it belongs.
    Answer: Yes. Obviously.

    1. I would argue that the value of the player should be worth the value of the pick. For instance, when a player is drafted in the 1st round that probably would have been around in the 2nd (a prime example would probably be Darius Heyward-Bey in Oakland); chances are good that Bey would have been around in the 2nd round for the Raiders to draft, but by drafting him in the 1st, they’ve essentially given up a ton of value for nothing since by the 2nd round 30+ 1st round player are now gone.

    1. Very interesting, this is what I would expect real NFL trade charts to look like. I think the 1990’s (or 1980’s as the author states) trade chart from the Cowboys was revolutionary at the time, but its been 20-30 years since then and to think the NFL hasn’t refined the chart is dumb. I wonder how strong the correlation between the public trade chart and this one is.

  9. The NFL trade chart is nothing more than a guide, a starting place for negotiations. If you’re a GM and one of the players on your Value board that you created, slips a significant amount you start to call the teams with the next few picks. If one of them says they might be interested in trading back with you then you start to look at the chart. You start by offering what the chart says would be a close comparison of picks. When your trading partner says that’s not good enough you now need to look at the rest of your picks and decide how much more is that players value to you. Like it was said the seller will always make out better in the transaction according to trade chart value because if they didn’t then there would be no incentive to move back. The buying team wins the right to pick the player that they valued much higher than where the pick was crossing their fingers that they did a good job of scouting that player and ranked him accurately. So in the end the trade chart does not have to be extremely accurate because your picks will most likely never add up to exactly what the other teams pick is worth and even if it does, at that point most teams would likely want more than what you are offering in order to move back.

    1. I agree with your statement, the question really becomes then how accurate the trade chart that fans have versus the trade charts that NFL GMs have, for instance if NFL GMs had completely different trade charts (my assumption), but they were all similar (also my assumption), then the public trade chart would still work, but not because it was accurate, only because the ratios between draft picks is similar.

  10. It is about players.

    For example:

    Would having Dwight Lowery and Dustin Keller instead of Jeremy Thompson on our team last year be nice?

    In 2008 the Vikings trade 2008 fifth round pick (#145-Breno Giacomini), 2008 seventh round pick (#194-Matt Flynn) to Packers for 2008 fifth round pick (#130-John David Booty): +5.3

    The vikings needed a QB and gave value. GB got Breno who just signed in Seattle with Flynn. The Flynn value is going to continue giving until next year. The vikes still needed a QB (and a stadium).

    Would TT have made this trade if TT felt Booty would run up points against the pack? Would TT have taken Booty and not flynn?

    Compared to the CM3 trade, TT got a heck of a good trade in 2008. It still comes to players. Obviously CM3 was a high target to TT. TT wanted CM3 the player and didn’t need to worry about giving up “points” to get his player.

    When trading “Points”, the GM needs to think of the trade points as a specific player. For instance, Jordy Nelson was a 2nd round pick so trading for a 1st round pick will bring more “points” but do you want to trade a Jordy Nelson for points?

    TT needs to think about the picks with a player in mind. He has a board of players and knows the players on the other teams boards (they are the same just valued differently). Is he ready to trade that player (and not points). Does TT really believe in the player he is trying to get.

    TT also needs to think of the player(s) the other team is looking to get. The boards are similiar and there is NO way TT is going to let a team get a “Good” player that will come back to haunt him. I’m sure he knew the Vikes were after Booty and laughed. Now if Booty had taken the vikes to the promised land that would be different.

    To be honest it has to be very difficult to find a player wanting to play in small market versus Big Cities with plenty of opportunities. Will the player fit in to the culture. Is the player a good guy for public? Can he play at the NFL level?

    I say the more picks allow for “surprise” picks that blossom versus the “can’t miss” labels. Any trade giving up lots of value in the first three rounds has to be special. What if TT had traded Jordy Nelson to get CM3? Was the trade worth it then?

    Rodgers and CM3 were great picks by TT. A percentage of the picks (all teams) don’t pan out though. It is a numbers game and no one is perfect. Getting football players picked is just the start. The more picks, the more players to get to camp. Even loaded as the Pack are, they can use the 7th round to select their Practice Squad for next year (not rely on FAs) or trade for better picks in 2013.

    Looking ahead to future 2013, they need WR, C/G, RB, OLB, S, CB and DL big bodies. It is the same every year. In order to keep their practice squad they will have to pay NFL minimun anyway so TT might as well draft and protect his practice squad now. Deprive other teams from this talent. (value by subtraction)

    If after the draft TT needs a specific position (OLB or DT) he can make a trade to fix the problem. Until then he needs to find as many football players who can tackle, block and thrive in GB.

    We assume we know the talent going into 2012 right now. Only the coaches, TT, MM know for sure what they need. An OLB – DT (maybe someone on the roster is now ready), maybe they will get the saftey back, maybe they will use 2nd round to trade into for big bodies. We don’t know what they know.

    From the trades above it appears 2nd, 4th and 5th are traded the most. If TT can get two higher 2nd’s or 3rd’s then GB will get big body for DL to play better than green. TT knows he needs to replace Pick soon and will get a safety and OLB as well as a guard/center.

    In loss to giants, it was a player on offense that dropped the pass that would have allowed GB to tie score in third quarter 20-20. I agrue that we need a wr that can catch the ball as much or more than we need an OLB. I will also argue we need to go to an attacking, tackling defense versus the sit back and take away defense of last year. Every team knows the packs DL hold the run and don’t attack. Next year Pick, Raji and every DL needs to push on plays to keep the other teams honest.

    TT knows he needs to build this year for the future as a dynasty is born.

    1. I’ve broken down my comments down:

      Would having Dwight Lowery and Dustin Keller instead of Jeremy Thompson on our team last year be nice? – You would actually be comparing Dustin Keller, Dwight Lowrey and Erik Ainge to Jordy Nelson and Jeremy Thompson. Personally I would pick Jordy Nelson over Dustin Keller.

      Would TT have made this trade if TT felt Booty would run up points against the pack? Would TT have taken Booty and not flynn? – I’m not entirely sure teams tell each other who they want to pick. I mean it’s not entirely important in terms of the trade as long as both parties are getting good perceived value; perhaps teams can guess in the first couple rounds but boards are probably very different by the 4th round.

      In order to keep their practice squad they will have to pay NFL minimun anyway so TT might as well draft and protect his practice squad now. Deprive other teams from this talent. (value by subtraction): The issue is that the Packers lose the rights to a player by cutting him, practice squad players are considered free agents and are allowed to sign with any team at any time point. So drafting a player only to cut him and sign him to the practice squad is a dangerous move.

      I will also argue we need to go to an attacking, tackling defense versus the sit back and take away defense of last year. Every team knows the packs DL hold the run and don’t attack. Next year Pick, Raji and every DL needs to push on plays to keep the other teams honest. – If you want the Packers to start running this type of defense, you need to fire Capers first because that isn’t his scheme. 3-4 defensive linemen are 1st supposed to hold up the offense linemen, rushing the passer or breaking up the pocket are bonuses really. DL pressure is obviously a good thing, but in a 3-4 defense its like asking wide receivers to block; sure they can do it and some are really good at it, but it’s not really what they are paid to do.

      1. Personally I would pick Jordy Nelson over Dustin Keller as well. I prefer putting it into that – versus “second round pick (#36) for first round pick (#30). Plus 6 value.

        Perhaps teams can guess in the first couple rounds but boards are probably very different by the 4th round.
        I believe each team has spent considerable effort ($) going into the draft, that each quality team has a simulation model to show actual picks and simulation of remaining picks. Having a total board of available players is almost a must. Simple flag on simulation model takes out the ‘actual” picks and allows the team to simulate again for next rounds. That is what I would do during the draft anyway.

        So drafting a player only to cut him and sign him to the practice squad is a dangerous move.
        Yes it is dangerous, but on final cut to 53 which team is then going to pick up a reserve squad guy to develop and have to drop one of their 53?

        You need to fire Capers first because that isn’t his scheme. 3-4 defensive linemen are 1st supposed to hold up the offense linemen, rushing the passer or breaking up the pocket are bonuses really.

        You don’t need to fire Capers. You need to go with a hybrid 4-3 on the offense strong side. The 3-4 on the weak side. The D can use the 3-4 and have one of the DL penetrate on multiple plays (not every play) put more than what happened last year. Getting a younger big body and replacing green will go along way to fixing the dline.

        its like asking wide receivers to block – our’s do the blocking. They are pretty good at it.

        1. I would think it’s very hard to predict who will be around in the 2nd round let alone the 4th. Teams each draft players differently and consider different things important. For instance the Raiders have always traditionally had a love for fast players. Will this be true in the Reggie McKenzie era? I have no idea, maybe the Packers have a good sense of what McKenzie is likely to do since he just left Green Bay, but I would think there are just too many permutations and variables to even run a simulation.

          On your second point, rookies who are cut don’t have to be signed onto a 53-man roster, they only have to agree with another team’s practice squad. Technically you can sign them back since their free agents, but it still seems like wasting (draft) ammo. Why not instead take those low round draft picks and try to move up a but in the mid rounds?

          Finally, there was some talk that the Packers might be moving towards a hybrid front like the Patriots, but my feeling is that the Packers specifically hired Capers to run a 3-4 and as far as I know he’s never run a 4-3. It’s like asking Mike McCarthy to start running a ground control offense, I’m sure he could do it, but he was hired because he runs west coast pass-first offense and that’s what he does best. Coaches have to be put in the right situation just like players to succeed.

    1. Interesting point, do you think that effects draft pick for draft pick trades?

  11. Looks like TT did well and made the Eagles and Patriots eat pond scum.

    1st Trade: Jerel Worthy Pick in the 2nd round

    A) For the Eagles 51st pick (2)
    B) Sent the 59th (2) & 123st (4)

    Trade Totals
    Trade A Value: 390
    Trade B Value: 359

    Gain/Loss %
    Trader A: -7.95%
    Trader B: +8.64%

    This is nearly an even swap, but in the Packers favor. The Eagles saw plenty of what they wanted left on the board. The Packers saw Kendall Reyes taken off the board and acted quickly to get who they thought was the next best DT left.

    2nd Trade: Casey Hayward Pick in the 2nd round

    A) For the Patriots 62nd pick (2)
    B) Sent the 90th (3) & 163rd (5)

    Trade Totals
    Trade A Value: 284
    Trade B Value: 167.2

    Gain/Loss %
    Trader A: -41.13%
    Trader B: +69.86%

    The numbers are clear… this was a steal. The Patriots must have not wanted to pick here at all to make this trade.

    3rd Trade: Terrell Manning Pick in the 5th round

    A) For the Patriots 163rd pick (5)
    B) Sent the 197nd (6), 224th (7) & #235th (7)

    Note: The pick (163) gained had been traded away on day 2 to the Patriots and after this trade the Packers got it back.

    Trade Totals
    Trade A Value: 27.2
    Trade B Value: 18.4

    Gain/Loss %
    Trader A: -32.35%
    Trader B: +47.83%

    The numbers are also pretty clear here… this was a minor steal. The Patriots did get three picks for 1 given… but the the Packers got to move way up in the draft while shedding draft picks that were nearly worthless to them.

    So TT makes 3 trades… all in his favor. And his trade value history ‘ERA’ just got a lot better.

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