Cody Flavell | April 24th, 2020
On Thursday night, the Green Bay Packers shocked the world by trading up to select Utah State quarterback Jordan Love with the 26th pick in the NFL Draft. It seems safe to assume none of the teams in front of them needed a quarterback. However, when teams have a target they covet, they aren’t shy about making moves to assure they get them.
The trade comes across as the only head scratching part of the deal. The Packers drafting Love is genius.
Aaron Rodgers still exists. The Packers were a win away from going to the Super Bowl last season. Rodgers’ offensive weapons don’t come off as electric. Green Bay’s brass should be doing everything they can to maximize Rodgers’ final years in the organization. Spare me the time, I understand all of that.
But I can’t help but notice how much talent is still available heading into rounds two and three Friday night. Fellow The Scorecrow writer Brady Podloski highlights the 30 best players available going into day two. Seven of them are skilled position players on the offensive side of the ball. Arguably, all of them could be seen as first-round talents.
Knowing this, Green Bay decided to take a chance on Love who could be one of the most talented quarterbacks in the league down the road. Currently, Love is a project. He is the kind of guy that has a lot of raw talent that can benefit from sitting behind a surefire Hall of Fame quarterback for a few seasons.
Teams typically would like younger quarterbacks to play earlier. If they’re talented enough and make very little money, they can construct better teams around the quarterback. Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs are a perfect example. Of course, quarterbacks will eventually earn upwards of $25 million in their first contract. That’s when the quality of talent a team can afford starts to dwindle. Maximizing the rookie deals are something teams favor. In this situation, unless Rodgers gets injured, Love may not see playing time until at least year three or four of the rookie deal.
Most importantly, Rodgers shouldn’t feel threatened at all by Love. He has an ego which certainly can lead to some tension but Rodgers is Green Bay’s guy. However, with an ego comes confidence. Rodgers is a guy that knows he is good. The team considering their future shouldn’t make Rodgers any less confident about his standing on the team.
In most years, taking a guy like Love in the first round knowing your quarterback still has a considerable amount of time left is risky. In this case, it still is a bit risky. Taking a chance with how much depth is left in this draft, however, is totally justified. Love could eventually be the future of the Packers franchise. Under the tutelage of Rodgers, Love should certainly become a reliable NFL quarterback, if nothing else.
Of course, if Green Bay neglects to take a wide receiver or running back Friday night, this Love pick becomes questionable.
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