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Why we took Chop Robinson for Packers in new NFL mock draft

In our recently posted NFL Wire network mock draft, Packers Wire’s pick at No. 25 overall in the first round was Penn State edge rusher Chop Robinson.

With Cooper DeJean, Jackson Powers-Johnson, Graham Barton and Troy Fautanu all off the board, we had to think outside the box — and targeting an elite athlete at a premium position was the play.

Robinson is on the smaller side (6-3, 254) when compared to the typical Packers edge rusher, but he just aced the combine (RAS of 9.53, second best among edge rushers) and is coming off two dominant seasons rushing the passer at Penn State. He’s also only 21 years old.

Do the Packers have a first-round need at edge rusher? Probably not. Preston Smith is returning, Rashan Gary just signed a mega deal and Lukas Van Ness — last year’s first-round pick — is entering Year 2. But a great defense is always built around a relentless pass rush, and Robinson’s explosiveness on the edge would be perfect for the 4-3 while allowing new defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley to get creative with both Gary and Van Ness. Also, Smith might only be around for the 2024 season, and the Packers could use a fourth edge rusher right away with Kingsley Enagbare (knee) expected to miss most of the season.

The Packers have plenty of behemoth edge rushers. Now is time to add the twitchy rusher who can scream off the edge and disrupt the quarterback in an instant.

Lance Zierlien of NFL.com sees Robinson as a Micah Parsons-like athlete with “destructive” potential who just needs time and development to work on the details of pass-rushing. The Packers have the depth necessary to develop Robinson into a force.

Athletes like Robinson at premium positions rarely last until the final third of the first round. In this case, the Packers pounced on a player who could become a legitimate difference maker at edge rusher.

Here’s Brennen Rupp’s “Unpacking Future Packers” profile of Robinson:

Story originally appeared on Packers Wire