One Key Attribute of the Packers' UDFA Crop
The Packers have a long and successful history of identifying undrafted free agents who can make an impact in Green Bay, and they’ve done so by identifying players with at least one significant attribute that can help them stand out. Here’s our shot at identifying those attributes for this year’s undrafted free agent crop.
CB Donatello Brown - Overall athleticism
Brown doesn’t wow in any one area, but his combined athletic testing is still quite good. He tested better than the average Packers’ draft pick in both the broad jump and 40-yard dash.
OLB Johnathan Calvin - Versatility
Calvin played as a 4-3 defensive end, 3-4 edge rusher, and kicked inside on passing downs while at Mississippi State. The Packers are currently trying to replace two players with a similar background, which can only help Calvin.
WR Michael Clark - Size
At 6-5 ½, 215, Clark is significantly larger than just about any other receiver on the roster. He’s still very much a raw talent (and says so himself), but a body like that is an impressive starting point.
WR Montay Crockett - Speed
Crockett reportedly clocked as low as a 4.25 in the 40-yard dash in a regional pro day earlier this spring, which is somewhere between ludicrously and unbelievably fast.
G Thomas Evans - Strength
Thomas Evans can bench press 525 pounds and squat close to 700. My personal best in the bench press is [redacted] and I’ve put up [redacted] in the squat.
G Geoff Gray - Explosiveness
Getting mass moving quickly is an important attribute for any lineman, offensive or defensive. Gray showed he can do just that with a 31-inch vertical leap and a 114-inch broad jump at his equivalent of a pro day. Jason Spriggs, the most athletic lineman drafted in the Ted Thompson era, posted a 31.5-inch vertical and a 115-inch broad jump at the NFL Combine -- and weighed 14 pounds less than Gray.
LB Cody Heiman - Agility
Other than A.J. Hawk, no inside linebacker drafted in the Ted Thompson era has had better times in the three cone drill (6.84 seconds) or short shuttle (4.18 seconds) than Cody Heiman.
QB Taysom Hill - Pro-Style Pedigree
As athletic as Taysom Hill may be, his real strength is probably the tutoring he got at BYU. His offensive coordinator in college was Ty Detmer, a former Packers quarterback whose offense had Hill using his athleticism as a complementary feature, not the main focus of his game.
NT Izzah Lunsford - Size
You’ve got to be big to play nose tackle in the NFL. Lunsford meets the bill at 6-3, 315 with 28 reps on the bench to boot.
G Adam Pankey - Tackle to Guard Pipeline
The Packers love to take college tackles and make them NFL guards. Pankey’s coaches at West Virginia already started that transition, starting him at both tackle and guard during his career.
TE Aaron Peck - Catch Radius
If height plus leaping ability equals catch radius, then Peck is in great shape. His 36.5-inch vertical leap is greater than that of any tight end drafted in the Ted Thompson era.
RB Kalif Phillips - Pure Productivity
College production should be taken with a huge asterisk, but Phillips was undeniably productive in college and was consistent to boot, averaging more than 184 carries a year for four years straight and piling up more than 4,000 career yards.
CB Lenzy Pipkins - Size/Speed Combo
Even at a well-muscled 6-0, 202, Pipkins managed a 4.46 40-yard dash. Those numbers put him towards the upper end of the agility spectrum among Packers’ defensive backs over the last 13 years.
CB David Rivers - Length
Short, feisty corners = old and bad. Long, smooth corners = new and good. Rivers is 6-1, plenty tall for the Packers and well within the new vogue movement for physical attributes among defensive backs.
T Christian Schneider - Athleticism
A decent rule of thumb with project players is to find a big athletic guy and teach him how to play football. Christian Schneider is big (6-5 ½, 302) and athletic enough (5.11 40-yard dash) that the Packers should have plenty to work with.
P Justin Vogel - Real Good Punting
Look, are you kidding me? What even is a notable attribute for a punter other than punting? Let’s just assume Vogel is a good enough punter to belong in an NFL training camp.