Looking ahead: Packers could target OL, ILB

Michael Cohen
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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GREEN BAY - The decision Thursday to use the 27th pick in the first round of the NFL draft on nose tackle Kenny Clark filled a major hole for the Green Bay Packers along the defensive line.

With that issue solved, there’s a good chance general manager Ted Thompson targets offensive tackle or inside linebacker Friday on Day 2. Here are a few prospects still available after the first day who might figure into Green Bay’s plans:

RelatedComplete Packers draft coverage

OTShon Coleman: The Packers have their starting tackles entrenched on either side with David Bakhtiari on the left and Bryan Bulaga on the right, but their depth at the position is suspect. Coleman made national headlines when he was diagnosed with leukemia in the spring of 2010. He missed more than two years of football at Auburn before finally seeing the field in 2013. Coleman served as a backup to Greg Robinson, the former No. 2 overall pick, and earned a starting role during his final two seasons of college football. He will turn 25 in November, and age might work against him in a youth-centric league. Coleman missed the combine after having surgery to repair what he described as a “slightly torn MCL” suffered during the 2015 season. He lacks a bit of flexibility and needs to get stronger — only 22 reps on the bench press at the combine. Earned second-team All-Southeastern Conference honors in 2015. Coleman has good size, demeanor and potential. Needs time to develop.

OTLe’Raven Clark: This could be a true developmental pick for the Packers as Clark is viewed as something of a project. His background in a gimmicky offense at Texas Tech — mostly out of a two-point stance, true run-and-gun style — makes for a steep learning curve at the next level, especially in the run game. And his lack of strength is fairly jarring: He managed only 18 reps on the bench press, worst at his position. But Clark has an intriguing blend of size (6-foot-5, 313) and length (longest arms and biggest hands among tackles) that will certainly interest teams in the late second or early third round. Said one scout: “In a couple years he could start. Just because he’s so damn long.” Clark said at the combine he’s been working on growing accustomed to a three-point stance.

MLB ReggieRagland: Considered by many to be the top inside linebacker in the draft, Ragland fell all the way to Day 2. He was a star at Alabama and earned unanimous All-America honors in 2015. Ragland is a throwback to old-school linebackers who live to absorb contact and dish out hits. He was a tackling machine and finished with 220 in just two years as a starter. Scouts question his ability to absorb an NFL system quickly and believe it might take some time. There are also concerns about his coverage skills, which raises the possibility that he might not be a three-down linebacker at the next level. He ran 4.66 seconds in the 40-yard dash and improved his Wonderlic score from 10 on the first attempt to 15 on the second.

OLBKamalei Correa : It’s no secret that defensive coordinator Dom Capers loves to employ his pass rush in waves. Whether it was Julius Peppers and Mike Neal, Nick Perry and Jayrone Elliott, or even Clay Matthews rotating through, Capers enjoyed mixing and matching off the edge. And you can never have too many pass rushers; just ask the Denver Broncos. Correa, a third-year junior from Boise State, would serve as a plug-and-play outside linebacker in the 3-4 defense. He is slightly undersized (6-2 ½, 242) but makes up for it with a tremendous motor and solid 4.69-second speed. Finished his career with 110 tackles (31 ½ for loss), 20 sacks and five forced fumbles. He performed better as a junior than as a senior, but the talent and desire are definitely there.

S Miles Killebrew With Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Morgan Burnett atop the depth chart, safety is not an obvious need. But the loss of Sean Richardson leaves the Packers a bit thin, especially considering Capers planned to feature him more prominently last year. Richardson was the closest thing the Packers had to the safety-linebacker hybrids that are increasingly popular in this year’s draft, and Killebrew could fit that role. He has good size (6-2, 218) and was a vicious hitter at Southern Utah. He recorded back-to-back seasons with more than 100 tackles and is accustomed to playing in the box. Killebrew is a smart player, evidenced by the best Wonderlic score (38) among safeties, and gained plenty of experience as a four-year starter.

RB C.J. Prosise: The Packers re-signed James Starks to ensure their top two running backs from the last few years remain the same. But beyond that, the cupboard is pretty bare. Aside from Starks’ versatility in the screen game, the Packers lacked a receiving threat out of the backfield. Prosise transitioned from wide receiver to running back at Notre Dame and racked up 1,158 yards rushing in his first and only season at the position. But his receiving skills remained, evidenced by 26 catches for 308 yards in 2015. He has a great combination of size (6-0 ½, 219), speed (4.46) and versatility. Said Prosise at the combine: “I can make big plays wherever I'm at on the field."

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