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How did the Green Bay Packers do in terms during the 2022 NFL draft? This is a tough question to answer. Maybe impossible.
Value is an important part of the draft process. An understanding of the board is vital to judging how teams went about maximizing value during the draft.
However, establishing true “value” is incredibly difficult. Thirty-two teams have thirty-two different draft boards, and there is no consensus big board for all teams. Teams scout differently and have different schemes, coaching staffs and needs.
The best we can do is base value on the consensus of the information available.
Arif Hasan of The Athletic creates the go-to consensus board, which ranks the top 300 players in the draft class based on 82 different big boards from draft analysts. As Hasan says, “the consensus of these experts does a better predictive job than individual experts.”
Here are the Packers’ picks in the 2022 draft, their consensus rank, their pick number and the difference between the two. This is how we’ll establish value.
Overall, the Packers actually didn’t waver much from the consensus board and actually gained 46 spots of value. The one caveat: Carpenter and Ford weren’t in the top 300 of the consensus board, so it’s unclear how big of a “reach” each of those seventh-round picks actually was. We took away value equal to both being No. 300. In many ways, this isn’t a perfect exercise.
The consensus board says the Packers reached a bit for Quay Walker in the first round (but note: he was a late riser in the process, at least in the media) and Watson in the second round, but all that value was made up and more on Day 3. Getting Enagbare in the fifth round and Rasheed Walker in the seventh round represented two of the very best values in the entire draft. Many thought Enagbare and Rasheed Walker would go on Day 2. The Packers got them deep into Day 3.
Rasheed Walker was actually the best “value” at +136. It’s possible he’ll become a starter at offensive tackle down the road. A knee injury suffered last season took away his pre-draft process, possibly resulting in his fall down the board. Enagbare was +104; he could be a future starter at edge rusher. The Packers seemed surprised both were available at their respective spots. To get two great values at premium positions has to be considered a huge win.
Not including Carpenter and Ford, who are clearly the two biggest reaches in the team’s draft class, the Packers’ next biggest reach was Toure, the last pick in the draft. The value of the class will take a big hit if Quay Walker, at -29, is a bust. A reach in the first round can be killer, but no one will care (or should care) where the Packers picked him if Quay Walker becomes a Pro Bowler.
Remember this quote from Packers director of football ops Milt Hendrickson, who learned it from longtime Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome: “A pick is just a pick until it becomes a player. From that standpoint, if you love the player, you find the way to get him.”
Overall, the Packers drafted five top-100 players on the consensus board despite trading away one of their top-100 picks in moving up for Watson. Five of the picks were considered good value compared to the consensus board; six were reaches. Five of the picks were +/- 15 spots, including four of the top five picks. Variance increases the further down the board the draft goes.