A pair of surprise selections to start the 2020 NFL draft left some Green Bay Packers fans feeling restless by the end of Day 2, but general manager Brian Gutekunst went right to work Saturday addressing the team’s most immediate needs.
The Packers selected Minnesota inside linebacker Kamal Martin at No. 175 overall in the fifth round with their first pick of the afternoon on Day 3, then used all three of their sixth-round picks to add depth along their offensive line — drafting Michigan guard Jon Runyan (No. 192), Oregon center Jake Hanson (No. 208) and Indiana tackle Simon Stepaniak (No. 209).
With his final two picks in the seventh round, Gutekunst turned his attention back to defense and selected TCU safety Vernon Scott (No. 236) and Miami defensive end Jonathan Garvin (No. 242), adding them to a round list of nine draftees who address many of the Packers’ primary needs — except, strangely, at wide receiver.
Here’s a breakdown of each of the Packers’ selections on Day 3 of the 2020 NFL draft:
ILB Kamal Martin, Minnesota
Martin (6-foot-3, 240 pounds) is a thick-built linebacker who can plug the gaps and will work best if they find a role for him alongside new starter Christian Kirksey. His capabilities are a bit limited in man-to-man coverage, but he secures his tackles, shows good instincts in response to his front-line defenders and should be in a position to compete for early reps with Oren Burks, Curtis Bolton and Ty Summers this offseason.
Martin was the 10th inside linebacker selected out of the 2020 class and first picked in the fifth round.
OG Jon Runyan, Michigan
Runyan’s versatility alone makes it easy to see why the Packers found him appealing. While he is officially listed as a guard, but the 6-foot-3, 306-pound draftee started his final two seasons with the Wolverines at left tackle while also spending time at right tackle and right guard. Scouts have scrutinized his length and questioned whether he can be more than an average NFL tackle; though, his speed and athleticism as an interior lineman make him a promising prospect to develop behind sturdier pieces.
Runyan was the 18th offensive guard selected out of the 2020 class and the third picked in the sixth round.
C Jake Hanson, Oregon
The Packers have current starting center Corey Linsley due for a (hefty) new contract next offseason and don’t have a great history of re-signing offensive lineman to lucrative deals once they hit their late 20s and early 30s. As such, the Packers took Hanson to ensure they have depth at the position regardless of how things shake out with Linsley. He is a four-year starter and workhorse who could be molded into a surprise contributor if he takes well to the pro level.
OT Simon Stepaniak, Indiana
Stepaniak (6-foot-4, 313 pounds) has good size and displayed excellent strength during his three years as a starter with the Hoosiers, but he has quite a bit of developing to do before he is ready to step into a similar role at the NFL level. Still, the tackle position is relatively thin behind starters Wagner and All-Pro left tackle David Bakhtiari, and Stepaniak gives them another young body to develop into a future contributor.
S Vernon Scott, TCU
The Packers’ second defensive pick is more about depth than immediate contributions, but Scott (6-foot-1, 206 pounds) is only the fifth safety on the roster behind starters Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage Jr. — who was an All-Rookie selection at defensive back last year. They still have backups Raven Greene and Will Redmond, but the latter was forced to do most of the heavy lifting in 2019 with a preseason injury sidelining Greene for the entire regular season.
Scott might not be able to push them on talent alone, but the right preparation could afford him opportunities to shine if injuries cause problems again for any of the safeties in 2020.
DE Jonathan Garvin, Miami
The Packers waited until the very last round to invest in their defensive line and elected to go with a developmental pass rusher who is likely at least a year away from being ready to contribute. Garvin (6-foot-4, 263 pounds) has some explosiveness in his game, but he needs to develop a second move and an unrelenting pursuit to become a complete NFL player. Give him some time to learn — including from the Smith Bros. — but don’t set the bar too high on his rookie year with just about every defensive lineman back for the Packers in 2020.
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