After the Green Bay Packers' postseason came to an abrupt and unexpected end on Saturday night, the focus now shifts to the upcoming offseason and how the Packers will adjust their roster for 2022.
Green Bay has salary cap issues and may have to watch great veteran players leave in order to get underneath the cap, including players like Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams. None of that is finalized yet. But what is finalized is the Packers draft position.
With the loss in the Divisional round and the Packers having the best record and toughest strength of schedule of anyone who lost in the Divisional round, Green Bay will hold the 28th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will select right in front of the Packers at 27 overall, with Buffalo and Tennessee picking 25th and 26th respectively.
Granted, the Packers would prefer to be picking 32nd in the draft this year, but picking a few spots earlier in the draft isn't the worst thing in the world given the turnover that will happen with this roster over the next few months. It'll be slightly easier for Green Bay to select the player they want, either by him having to slide a few less spots or it'll be easier to trade up to get him from a slightly more valuable spot in the draft order.
It's not much of a silver lining for the Packers, who once again came up short of their ultimate goal with a team that really should've been capable of winning the Super Bowl this year.
The last time the Packers held the 28th overall pick in the Draft was 2012 when they selected pass rusher Nick Perry from USC. Perry was solid for a couple years but the big hits in that draft class came later when they selected cornerback Casey Hayward in the 2nd round and defensive tackle Mike Daniels in the 4th round.
As for what team needs the Packers could address with the 28th pick, a lot of that will depend on free agency and how the Packers have to structure their roster to get it under the salary cap in March. Lots of key players could leave, but some could stay and the needs will change from that.
Profootballnetwork.com lists these positions as the top five needs for the Packers heading into the Draft as of right now: Wide Receiver, Linebacker, Right Tackle, Outside Linebacker, and Defensive Tackle.
Amari Rodgers is the only wide receiver under contract for 2022 at the moment and they need to add more depth at that position, even if Davante Adams is re-signed.
It's going to be an interesting offseason for the Packers, and likely a painful one. At least in the draft, they'll be adding players instead of subtracting them.