High Praise for Packers 7th Round Pick Sam Barrington from NFL Analyst Greg Cosell

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Is Packers LB Sam Barrington the latest draft steal for GM Ted Thompson?

NFL analyst and NFL Films senior producer Greg Cosell had high praise for Packers seventh-round draft pick Sam Barrington on Tuesday.

Speaking with with Doug Farrar of Yahoo Sports on the Shutdown Corner podcast, Cosell called the 6-foot-1, 235-pound linebacker from South Florida an “athletic kid,” whose “athletic ability was a second- or third-round pick.”

“I think this kid has a chance, and certainly to stick on special teams because of his athleticism,” the highly respected Cosell said. “But I thought he was far more athletic than a lot of linebackers I watched and I was surprised he was not talked about.”

Cosell also said he did some additional research on Barrington and found out that he may have dropped in the draft because of issues diagnosing plays and learning on defense, but that’s impossible to know for sure.

Barrington was also arrested four times at South Florida — all for driving with a revoked or suspended license. Getting arrested four times generally doesn’t help one’s draft stock, either.

Barrington’s numbers improved every season at South Florida, culminating with 80 tackles, two forced fumbles and 3.5 sacks in 11 games as a senior.

His 40-yard-dash time at the NFL combine was a ho-hum 4.89 seconds, but improved to 4.69 seconds on South Florida’s pro day.

After Packers GM Ted Thompson picked Barrington, he called him a “good value.” That’s about as boastful as you’ll hear the tight-lipped Thompson get about a pick he’s made.

The Packers have had success with seventh-round draft picks in the past. Is Barrington the latest steal for Thompson?

“I was really surprised that he was not drafted until the seventh round,” Cosell said. “The more I watched him the more I liked his game. I wouldn’t call him explosive, but he was athletic with really good movement. I always defer to film as opposed to 40 times, and I thought he played as an athlete.”


Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .


33 thoughts on “High Praise for Packers 7th Round Pick Sam Barrington from NFL Analyst Greg Cosell

  1. This stuff makes me impatient for training camp to start so we can get some more serious and less speculative looks at these guys.

  2. Matt De Lima thought Barrington “a developmental 3-4 OLB” whose “coverage skills are a work in progress.” See http://www.fftoolbox.com/nfl_draft/profile_display.cfm?prospect_id=3824

    Barrington doesn’t have the height or the speed to be an NFL OLB. That’s why the Pack is converting him to the inside. It doesn’t bode well for him that Cosell thought he dropped in the draft because of “issues diagnosing plays and learning on defense.” Good luck, Sam, given Dom Capers’ complex defensive schemes. IMO, his best chance of making the roster is for what he can do on special teams.

    1. A learning disability doesn’t preclude him learning the defense. Sounds like that’s a non issue to me.

      1. Stroh:

        Not sure I would call it a “learning disability.” When that phrase is used, most people associate it w/ a neurological disorder. Not saying that you intended it that way, but people could think you did.

        I don’t think Cosell was necessarily saying that Barrington has a neurological disorder, just struggled a bit diagnosing plays and learning the defense. Perhaps that is part of a bigger learning issue, but we don’t know that for sure.

        1. I don’t do the PC thing. Once you get a term that is PC correct everyone uses it, then it gets a bad connotation and then soon its no longer PC to use. Its a waste of time! That doesn’t mean you can say anything or be derogatory, but theres wasn’t anything wrong w/ Learning Disabled a couple years ago. So screw the PC crap!

          I wasn’t saying that he has a learning disability, just sounds like he does. I don’t know if/what he has if anything and don’t care. But just cuz a player might have one doesn’t mean he can’t/won’t learn the D. Just have to find out how he learns and help him learn that way.

          1. It’s got nothing to do w/ being PC. A learning disability is an actual disability.

            If a guy sprains his ankle and can’t walk for a week, you wouldn’t call him a paraplegic.

            1. Of course its an actual disability! It wouldn’t be called one otherwise. What the hell kinda response is that? I never suggested it wasn’t, but learning disabilities can be overcome by finding out how the individual person does learn best and tailoring his learning/study efforts to fit it.

              Happens all the time. Its no reason to think he can’t learn a playbook! I’m sure countless NFL players have done it. Not to mention scores of college graduates!

      2. Dr. Stroh: How can you conclude that Sam Barrington has a “learning disability”? He may have, in Greg Cosell’s opinion, “issues diagnosing plays and learning on defense” but that does not equate to a “learning disability.” Sam graduated from the University of Central Florida, which is a very good school, with a degree in interdisciplinary social sciences. He may not be able to contribute to the Packers that much this year as an ILB because he has a lot of complex schemes to learn, which is why I believe his best chance of making the roster is on special teams, but to diagnose a “learning disability” from Cosell’s comments is preposterous.

        1. My mistake . . . Sam went to the University of Southern Florida, not UCF. It also is a very good school. I confused him with Troy Davis, a UCF linebacker, whom I had hoped the Packers would have drafted. I guess that, as a result of my error, I, too, have a “learning disability.”

        2. Screw you! I was saying it sounds like a Learning Disability. Whaever he has, if anything, I don’t care! Just find out how he learns best and let him learn. I don’t see any reason he can’t learn the D schemes just as fast as most others.

          1. It’s not that Cosell is insinuating that the kid has a learning disability.

            Cosell is insinuating the kid just doesn’t get it, he just might not be a smart kid, at least, not football smart.

            If Cosell is right, that could be a huge problem for a kid coming out of a collegiate defense and entering what is considered to be one of the more complex pro defenses.

          2. Stroh: One day Buddha was walking through a village. A very angry and rude man came up and began insulting him. Buddha was not upset by this. Instead he asked the rude and insulting man “Tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?” The man was surprised by the question but answered, “It would belong to me, because I bought the gift.”
            The Buddha smiled and said, “That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself.”

            1. Oh I get it… You weren’t being condescending when you said Dr Stroh?! Riiiight!!! Don’t run that crap by me dumbass!

          3. No, you called it a “Learning Disability”, beginning with your first comment. I’m reading this whole conversation between you and the others, and for the life of me can’t figure out why you became so defensive from the start. Normally you make some very intelligent, well thought out comments on this site. There’s no reason to tell people “screw you”, there’s enough hostility in the world. We don’t need it on ALLGREENBAYPACKERS.com! It’s July and the Packers are going to win the Superbowl WITH Barrington helping along the way.

            1. He’s the one that got condescending and took it that direction. I said sound like a learning disability to me.

            2. Poor Stroh. Isn’t it amazing how he refuses to understand the meaning of his own comment? Its first sentence, “A learning disability doesn’t preclude him learning the defense,” clearly communicates the opinion that Sam Barrington has a learning disability. The second sentence, “Sounds like that’s a non-issue to me,” is, well . . . silly. Having a learning disability is an issue, and a very serious one at that. Just ask Alex Green, who has spent years coping with and overcoming his, dyslexia.

              Then, when readers, myself included, point out his mistake to him, he becomes defensive and angry, using insults and abusive language rather than admitting his mistake. He could have used humor and made light of it, but he apparently takes himself too seriously. Perhaps he has an inferiority complex. What else could explain his getting so upset and ranting about “political correctness” or disproportionately insulting when I addressed him as “Doctor”? Personally, his insults and language do not offend me – they are laughable — but they also are signs of a troubled soul.

      3. Stroh:

        As a teacher, the term “learning disability” is used to describe a discrete set of disabilities that affect information processing. While it might be seen as a PC term, it is in fact a technical term that is used by those of us in the education sector on a regular basis.

        That said, I don’t disagree with the actual point you were trying to make. People sometimes need different strategies – learning disability or not – to learn things better. If they’re not getting it, that doesn’t mean it’s their intellectual limitations at fault. It’s often the teaching strategy that needs to be adjusted.

        So yes, it’s not an issue unless the coaches can’t find the right way to teach him, or if he doesn’t put in the requisite effort to learn it.

        1. Sometimes, a person’s intellect is the limiting factor. It is not always just a matter of the method of assimilation of information, in some cases it is the ability to digest it.

          Learning disabilities are challenges to be overcome- how to offer information in a way that is best or most easily absorbed for an individual. A stifled intellect, however, is not a challenge, it’s a limiting factor.

          Which is it that Cosell was referring to? Don’t know. Cosell could be completely wrong, either way, I guess.

          1. It can be, but I think as a coach you have to believe that it won’t be.

            That said, I think you also have to consider the mental quickness of a player. Being able to identify and analyze things in mere tenths of seconds is maybe the bigger key to success.

        2. Side note,

          Alex Green is a perfect player-example of an athlete with learning disabilities who has a solid grasp of what he needs to do to make it work for himself.

          1. Yes, Alex Green’s story of overcoming personal hardships as well as those caused by his dyslexia is inspiring to all of us. Until he started attending the Univ. of Hawaii in 2009 he never knew that he had dyslexia, which is a learning disorder. Thanks, Oppy, for reminding me about him. As far as I know, though, Sam Barrington has not received such a diagnosis from any reputable medical source. Like you, I don’t know what Cossell is referring to.

  3. I would like a bigger, taller, faster linebacker but if he can play, great. We won’t know anything till the pads come on. After Bishop was cut, I was hoping one of the young inside linebackers would step up in training camp and preseason to push the starters….. like Bishop used to. Manning was my pick to be that guy but if Barrington or both can then even better. Always nice to know you have a young guy with potential waiting in the wings.

  4. He was a “Good Value” Pick. Nothing more – nothing less. Where he fits into the GB organization (this year) will not be know until Sept. He was a 7th round pick not a 1st round. If he makes the squad great but likely he is a development guy for this year. I’d recommend a driver, a weight training program strong coaching. He might do special teams or be practice squad material, we will see this fall.

  5. Barrington IMO is a better Bishop coming out of college. Better athlete. Quicker, Faster without a doubt more agile then Bishop.
    Played both MLB and OLB in the 4-3. He was 246# at the combine,now listed on the Packers site as 235# .
    Like Bishop instinctive.
    Does he have a chance to make the 53 man roster, sure he does, but he will have to show he can play both play in the defense and on special teams.
    I think he will have to play really well to displace Lattimore and Manning unless he does that he will be a practice squad player.

  6. Just 3 more weeks til the Packers begin their quest for trophy number 5. Can’t wait!!!

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