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Packers' 1st-round pick gets favorable reviews

Apr. 26, 2013

The reaction to the Packers’ selection of UCLA defensive lineman Datone Jones in the first round of the draft last night has been very favorable, based on a sampling of comments from football experts around the country:

Pete Priscoe, Ted Thompson always seems to pick good football players. Datone Jones owned the Senior Bowl week. He is a perfect pick for the Packers. He will be a 3-4 end.

Chris Burke, Jones’ skill set starts with versatility — he slid all over the line at UCLA, and he could handle either DE spot or an occasional spin inside in the Packers’ 3-4. Green Bay’s rather humiliating defeat against San Francisco in the playoffs proved again that this team needs more of a stout defense. Eventually, it stands to reason, the Packers will address their secondary and linebacking corps in this draft, too. But the defensive line needed at least one reliable player. Jones more than works. With B.J. Raji plugging the middle in Green Bay’s D, Jones should be able to generate a little push alongside him, thus freeing up the Packers’ outside linebackers (specifically, Clay Matthews) to help slow down opposing offenses.

Doug Farrar, Perfect fit -- this is a lock for both player and team. Jones is set up to excel as a potential Defensive Rookie of the Year level.

Nate Davis, USA Today: Little surprise that GM Ted Thompson opts to wait and fill his hole at running back and continues to reload a defense that he overhauled in the 2012 draft. With D-linemen B.J. Raji and Ryan Pickett both currently unsigned beyond 2013, Jones provides an insurance policy while adding more depth to a team that enlisted Jerel Worthy in the second round a year ago. Thompson has plenty of time to get a good runner (and maybe a safety or blocker) Friday.

Russ Lande, National The Packers add an impact defensive end with the selection of UCLA's Datone Jones. A strong and powerful player, Jones' ability to jolt and defeat pass blocks is remarkable. He proved his pass rush ability by beating Eric Fisher repeatedly during Senior Bowl practices. Not only productive rushing the passer, Jones played all over the defensive line at UCLA and has the versatility to line up and be productive anywhere along the line. Do not be shocked when Jones has 10+ sacks as a rookie. Fantastic pick at the right time. Versatile and very, very athletic, he can do anything for a defensive front, and he showed throughout the offseason workouts that he’s able to work in any system and any style.

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