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Thompson on trading picks: 'I felt like it was appropriate'

Apr. 28, 2012
 

Packers General Manager Ted Thompson talked to the media this afternoon prior to the team’s seventh-round selections:

On how he feels about the defense compared to 48 hours ago: “I feel pretty good. I feel like we’ve added some depth and some core and some competition, not only on the defense but on special teams. And I think like we discussed (Friday) I think that helps the team.”

On offensive coaches looking at you kind of funny: ”I got that last year from the defensive guys. Last year there was no intent to do it that way. This year there was no intent. We strictly try to stick with our ratings and look at value and if we think someone can come in and whether it’s compete for a starting job or compete for a spot on the roster and play special teams and back up, those guys are valuable.”

On trading pick No. 163 and then getting it back: ”I don’t know if I’ve seen that. I might have and just don’t recall it. Yeah, it’s almost like kissing your sister. You go back and trade for your ownpick or something. It’s just the way it worked out. It was a place where we felt like a player was being undervalued a little bit and we didn’t know how long he would be undervalued.”

On whether trading picks away is hard: ”It’s horrible. I felt about as ashamed … I’m not my father’s son anymore, because my father’s very frugal. It’s pathetic. But in this case, I felt like it was appropriate. I felt like we had a good, solid team and I felt like where we knew that we felt like we were getting quality we should try to do it. So we made three trades up.”

On building the core in his early drafts and filling in blanks now: ”Yeah, and it kind of depends year to year on the draft itself and how you evaluate the players in it and that sort of thing. The times we’ve discussed this, the times you move back is when you feel like there are a number of players that you’d be happy with. The times you move up maybe you’re a little more specific and you kind of got a guy eye-balled.”

On common denominator among his picks: ”We hope they all have allthose things. We’ll find out. No I don’t think so. We felt like they were football people, football core guys. They each are different obviously. And with each of the players we’ve acquired they have different contributions that they can make for our team.”

On getting faster as a team: ”Well I think this group has got good speed. But we’ve got a pretty fast defense.”

On how much he helped his pass rush: ”Well we hope we helped all aspects of defense. Certainly pass rush is a very vital thing in the National Football League because of the proliferation of the passing game. And we’ll see. We hope so. These guys have never played in the NFL. They’ve never competed at the level they’re going to have to compete at. So they’re going to have to show us. But we feel good about them right now.”

On how much did the defense need this influx of talent: ”I don’t know if it was that much of a need. The draft is very important not only for the immediate, which sometimes I think is overvalued as opposed to the long term. And we feel like these are good investments in the Packers organization over the long term. We certainly hope that some or all of them can contribute right away.”

On interview with safety Jerron McMillian prior to draft: ”We just wanted to get to know him, have the coaches sit and talk with him and that sort of thing.”

On how long he’s been looking at McMillian: ”Lee Gissendaner does that area, he scouted him in the fall, and he’s got really good tape. Sometimes in certain areas of the country, and not say at a BCS-type school, you can kinda get lost a little bit. I think he maybe he was lost a little bit. We’re very impressed with him personally, sitting and talking with him, we were impressed. He brings a certain dynamic to the field. You feel his presence when we watch tape on him. We’re looking forward to adding him to our group.”

On the tough spot for a small school guy because of the QB-WR lack of talent: “I think football’s football, and I’m not saying Maine doesn’t play football, it’s just not Alabama. But we watched him in several games where they were predominantly run teams and we watched him in several games where it was predominantly passing. He shows very good versatility. He looks good in centerfield. He’s aggressive and physical coming up in support, and we felt like he would be a good addition.”

On how to tell which guys are more ready to play: “I feel like these guys will be ready to play. Again, I don’t want to discount and make light of NFL experience and having gone through it. These are grown men, they’re going to come in and compete against, but I do think these people, these young men that we drafted over the last few days are going to be able to come in and hold their own.”

On getting to the bottom of McMillian’s legal troubles: “Part of the reason you bring guys in is to talk about things like that, and we felt comfortable with that.”

On whether Packers are now better at tackling after draft: ”Sure, we watch and note missed tackles and things like that, but we weren’t necessarily focused on that being an issue, but these guys, on tape at least from what I’ve seen, tackle pretty good.”

On Mike Daniels’ shoulder: “We’ve seen him at the combine and all that, so we’re good.”

On 90-man training camp roster: ”At that owners meeting it was discussed when people like myself go to those sort of things. There’s other meetings that people like myself don’t get invited to. It was discussed, it was tabled but we knew that that competition committee and the different committees with the league office were going to look into it. We expected it, but we didn’t know what the number was or anything like that.”

On Packers being only combine interview with Daniels and what he took from that: “He’s very upbeat. You’ll like him, he’s got a nice smile. a very active, aggressive football player. We feel good about the people we know at Iowa on the coaching staff and elsewhere, and we’ve had good success with Iowa guys. We feel like we have a good chance to have success with Mike.”

On sense of excitement getting to work with rookies in offseason this year: “Yeah, I think we talked about this last year, we weren’t going to get the rookie minicamp. I think it’s always nice to get all the rookies in and even some guys you don’t sign but you invite to rookie minicamp to go for the first time and you’ve seen them. So it will be to get them involved and in the program. I will say last year not only our team but most teams, even with the shortened system we had last year, I thought those guys did OK.”

On having offense so good that he can go all defense in draft and not worry: “It’s not a reflection of whether we think one side of the ball is better than the other side, it’s just the way the thing fell.”

On importance of addressing inside rush: “All of that is important. Even if there are things we haven’t been able to do over the weekend, we don’t necessarily think that’s unimportant. It’s very important. We think certainly Mike can give us some juice on the inside and that sort of thing. But the whole thing, we’re trying to assemble a team, so we’re not focusing too much just on one area.”

On how many undrafted guys he will sign: “I wouldn’t care to speculate on a number. I would guess it would probably be about the same. I don’t know that for a fact, but we’ve got to check all the numbers. That’s why I’m going to do this now and go back up.”

On whether he can say for sure Donald Driver will be in camp this year: “I would never speculate on something like that. He’s dancing right now. Doing good too.”

What's your take on the Packers Family Night change?

Retrieving results.
Watching practice is fine.(Your vote)
15%
573 votes
I'd rather watch a scrimmage.(Your vote)
23%
854 votes
I don't want to pay to watch practice.(Your vote)
27%
1011 votes
It doesn't matter to me.(Your vote)
34%
1270 votes

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