The 2023 Green Bay Packers draft class is set, with Green Bay selecting 13 players across seven rounds. We graded all of these draft picks. After seven rounds, the team signed several undrafted free agents as well. Overall, this looks to be one of the better draft classes from Brian Gutekunst. Of course, the bar is set rather low.
The Packers did not address all of the team’s needs in the draft and there were several picks that could have been made in later rounds or even days.
Much like I did last year, I will redraft the Green Bay Packers draft class immediately following the draft. There is no 20/20 hindsight for how players panned out, and I cannot draft at a different pick than the Packers actually did. So, I cannot trade to another draft pick to take a prospect that wasn’t on the board when Green Bay was on the clock.
Let’s jump right into it and redraft the 2023 Green Bay Packers draft class. But first, let’s remind ourselves of the players the Packers selected.
2023 Green Bay Packers Draft Class
|1,13||Lukas Van Ness, DE||Iowa|
|2, 42||Luke Musgrave, TE||Oregon State|
|2, 50||Jayden Reed, WR||Michigan State|
|3, 78||Tucker Kraft, TE||South Dakota State|
|4, 116||Colby Wooden, DL||Auburn|
|5, 149||Sean Clifford, QB||Penn State|
|5, 159||Dontayvion Wicks, WR||Virginia|
|6, 179||Karl Brooks, DL||Bowling Green|
|6, 207||Anders Carlson, K||Auburn|
|7, 232||Carrington Valentine, CB||Kentucky|
|7, 235||Lew Nichols III, RB||Central Michigan|
|7, 242||Anthony Johnson Jr., DB||Iowa State|
|7, 256||Grant DuBose, WR||Charlotte|
Redrafting the 2023 Green Bay Packers Draft Class
Round 1, Pick 13 – Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia
Much like Brian Gutekunst, I will also be passing on Jaxon Smith-Njigba. While he is a great player that fills a need, getting a long-term starter at offensive tackle is more important, especially if we think Jordan Love is the future. Additionally, the receiver depth in this draft is much deeper than tackle, and Green Bay can draft a solid receiver early next season.
So, we go with Broderick Jones at No. 13. Jones is probably the second-best true tackle prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft. As a former basketball player, Jones is incredibly athletic for his size. He thrives in the running game, flying around and burying defenders. Jones has the tools to develop into an anchor in pass protection as well.
Take him here and the Packers will have a starter at tackle for the next decade-plus. I could easily see Jones develop into a Lane Johnson-like right tackle. However, he also could be the answer on the blindside after David Bakhtiari is no longer on the team, which could be as soon as 2024.
Round 2, Pick 42 – Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
While some fans may be disappointed I didn’t go wide receiver in the first round, it needs to be understood that Luke Musgrave also can be an elite receiving weapon at a position that can exploit more matchups.
Musgrave is an athletic freak, running a 4.61-second 40-yard dash, and he has a 36-inch vertical and a 10-foot-5 broad jump. He is a massive, athletic receiver that can stretch the field and be a matchup nightmare. Musgrave also comes from a football family. He has a high football IQ and knows what it means to be a pro, which can go a long way.
This gives the Packers’ offense a vertical threat and a receiver that can create separation on his own (a rarity in Green Bay).
Round 2, Pick 50 – Tuli Tuipulotu, DL/EDGE, USC
The Packers drafted Lukas Van Ness in the first round and other versatile defensive linemen. Tuli Tuipulotu is the versatile player on the defensive front that we will take here. While Tuipulotu spent most of his snaps outside opposing tackles at USC, he did have some success on the interior as well and he is built like a 3-4 defensive end. He can be moved around on the defensive front, allowing the Packers to draw up different looks and stunts up front.
Round 3, Pick 78 – Josh Downs, WR, North Carolina
Josh Downs is a great athlete who could thrive underneath for the Green Bay Packers, while players like Musgrave and Christian Watson clear out the defense. He has great quickness and can create separation by himself with strong footwork and route running, which is something Green Bay has rarely had. “Slippery” is probably the best word to describe Downs with the ball in his hands. He can also return punts, which is always nice to have around.
Round 4, Pick 116 – KJ Henry, EDGE, Clemson
The Packers need depth at edge rusher, and getting KJ Henry in the fourth round is great value. Henry really turned it on this past season, totaling 34 hurries and five sacks. He is really athletic, reads QB’s eyes well, shows great pursuit and is smooth on the edge. Henry is more of a face-up rusher currently, but NFL coaching will help him with his hands and moves on the edge.
Round 5, Pick 149 – Jordan McFadden, G, Clemson
Jordan McFadden was a great tackle in college, with a lot of experience at both tackle spots. However, at only 6-2, he has to slide to guard. It will take some time for him to lean the new position, but McFadden is a great lineman and could be able to develop into a starter. Regardless, he would be a strong, versatile depth piece on the line for Green Bay.
Round 5, Pick 159 – Antonio Johnson, S, Texas A&M
The Packers did not properly address the safety position in the draft, but we will. In the redraft of the 2023 Green Bay Packers draft class, Green Bay selects Antonio Johnson in the fifth round, which is a massive surprise. It is surprising to see him go on the third day, much less the fifth round.
Last season, Johnson played roughly half of his snaps in the slot, a quarter in the box and a quarter deep. The Packers’ defense needs a true slot player for the star role, and I would love for Johnson to play that role. This allows Green Bay to move Rasul Douglas back.
However, if Green Bay doesn’t want to play Johnson where he would be best (which is a typical Packer defense thing to do), the Packers desperately need help at safety anyways and he would surely be an upgrade.
Round 6, Pick 179 – JL Skinner, S, Boise State
JL Skinner fell in the actual NFL Draft, and this value is too good to pass up. Skinner can play either safety position. He plays well in run defense, taking good angles and bringing his pads on big hits. At 6-4, he also has the size to matchup with tight ends, which is needed in the NFC North. These past two picks could easily develop into Green Bay’s two starting safeties by 2024.
Round 6, Pick 207 – Zack Kuntz, TE, Old Dominion
We just talked up Skinner’s length and how it is needed to cover the big tight ends in the division. Let’s add another big tight end to the NFC North with Zack Kuntz, who is a 6-7 monster. He is an athletic freak, running a 4.55-second 40-yard dash. Kuntz is capable of becoming a strong in-line blocker, and he clearly will be a massive weapon in the middle of the field and the red zone.
Round 7, Pick 232 – Kenny McIntosh, RB, Georgia
In the actual 2023 Green Bay Packers draft class, the team selected a running back. We will do the same, but the better pick is Kenny McIntosh. The Georgia running back is a natural pass catcher out of the backfield and ran solid routes in college. He also is a strong runner with great burst between the tackles. If Green Bay’s future in the backfield is AJ Dillon, then McIntosh would be a solid complementary backfield pairing.
Round 7, Pick 235 – Moro Ojomo, DL, Texas
I am slightly hesitant with this draft pick, as the assumption is that something with Moro Ojomo’s physical was a red flag to teams. If there was no red flag, then it makes no sense that the Texas defensive lineman fell to the seventh round. Regardless, he is too good of a talent to pass up on.
Ojomo is one of the best run-stoppers in the entire 2023 NFL Draft. He has the skills to be a early-down player on the defensive front for Green Bay immediately.
Round 7, Pick 242 – Anthony Johnson Jr., DB, Iowa State
Anthony Johnson Jr. is a player I have talked about here quite a bit, and I thought he would be drafted earlier. However, since the Packers somehow got him here, it would be foolish not to make the same pick. He transitioned from cornerback to safety last season and played well.
Johnson is capable of playing safety, or he could slot in well as a nickel. I assume Green Bay will play him solely at safety. Here’s hoping he is used correctly, because this could be the steal of the 2023 Green Bay Packers draft class if he is.
Round 7, Pick 256 – Grant DuBose, WR, Charlotte
Grant DuBose is a long, well-built wide receiver that is perfect as a seventh-round draft pick. I liked how the Packers ended their draft with this selection, so we will too. He has the physical tools to play on Sundays, despite lacking in speed.
DuBose has great ball skills, has creative releases, runs good routes and he is tough as a blocker as well. As long as he stays healthy and gets good coaching, he could develop into a solid NFL wide receiver.