Green Bay Packers

Would A First-Round Tackle Signal the End Of Josh Myers' Time In Green Bay?

Photo Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Less than a week out from the 2024 NFL Draft, the sentiment around the Green Bay Packers’ agenda has begun to shift. Of course, the Packers are keeping their plans tightly under wraps. People have focused on their historical trends, like passing on receivers early, heavily weighting relative athletic score (RAS), and, perhaps most prominently, hitting the mock drafters with a curveball. Throughout much of draft season, Iowa defensive back Cooper DeJean has been many fans’ golden goose. However, like with T.J. Watt and Jaxon Smith-Njigba before him, that guarantees nothing.

The further we have gotten, the more certainty surrounds the idea of a splurge at offensive tackle. Former seventh-round pick Rasheed Walker stepped in at left tackle late last season and gave Brian Gutekunst a lot to think about. Still, giving him the keys to David Bakhtiari’s castle solely on that account is not exactly solid ground to stand on. Speculation on how the Packers might approach the line intensified when ESPN’s Rob Demovsky dropped an interesting report that clarified some questions and introduced a couple.

According to Demovsky, Green Bay’s front office views Zach Tom as “a Pro Bowl right tackle, an All-Pro guard, and potential Hall of Fame center.” For many who had the emerging star penciled in at tackle, this adds clarity and, if true, positions the Packers to take a big swing or two at that position. With five picks in the first three rounds, they won’t have to be bashful, whether that means loading up on a position or moving up the board for one of their guys.

Moving Tom to center would bode poorly for Josh Myers, who currently occupies that position and is entering the final year of his rookie deal. Myers was a second-round pick in 2021 and an attempt to follow the incredible act that was Elgton Jenkins’ selection in the same round two years prior. Many analysts scratched their heads at the selection, particularly given that the consensus No. 1 in the class, Creed Humphrey, found his way to Kansas City just one pick later. The Packers have often gotten the last laugh from the talking heads, most recently with none other than Jordan Love. But they were proven to be a step behind in this instance. Humphrey has earned Pro Bowl and All-Pro honors en route to multiple Super Bowls.

There are certainly other significant needs on a young roster loading up for a serious bid for the NFC crown, most notably in the secondary. But if indeed Gutekunst breaks the trend of waiting until after Day 1 on offensive tackles, it would almost certainly signal the end of Myers’ tenure in Green Bay and confirm Demovsky’s report.

On Thursday, the team added an interesting layer to the landscape by inking former Philadelphia Eagles and Tennessee Titans OT Andre Dillard. A former first-rounder, Dillard strung together some solid seasons in Philadelphia before becoming a huge liability last year in Tennessee. According to Warren Sharp, he ranked dead last of 38 qualifying tackles in both pressure rate and sacks allowed. Suffice it to say, while he is a name you may recognize, there are no intentions of slotting him into a starting lineup that held its own all through last season. The deal is likely cheap and non-guaranteed, and it speaks to a lack of depth at the position after the departure of the reliable Yosh Nijman.

It’s lying season, and teams continue to use the media to shape the board in their favor. Sometimes, it’s ugly, like some of the scathing “news” we’ve heard about wideouts Malik Nabers and Adonai Mitchell. But sometimes it’s subtle. Perhaps the Dillard signing could throw teams off the scent as a tertiary function. Or, maybe Demovsky’s report itself is part of the smokescreen. It wouldn’t be draft night as a Packers fan if you had any idea what to expect.

There will be bewilderment and perhaps some anger throughout those first two days and some logical voices to break down the squad’s newest members. We can say with a good deal of confidence that a first-round tackle would indicate a pretty specific sequence of events to come. Significantly, that would include an admission that Josh Myers cannot be the answer beyond 2024.

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