Packers G.M. Brian Gutekunst: “No regrets” about 2020 draft

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The Packers want to keep quarterback Aaron Rodgers around, in order to compete for more championships. They arguably hampered their ability to compete for a 2020 championship by taking a quarterback in the first round of the most recent draft, and by using a fourth-round pick to trade up for Jordan Love.

Still, Packers G.M. Brian Gutekunst told reporters on Monday, via Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette, that Gutekunst doesn’t see another move he could have made to get the team over the hump in 2020.

“Really no regrets looking back at the draft last year,” Gutekunst said.

Unless the plan was to take a quarterback who’d light a fire under the current quarterback, there should be regrets. Those picks could have become one or two players who would have helped the Packers beat the Buccaneers in the NFC Championship, and possibly to win a Super Bowl.

It will be interesting to see whether the Packers devote their 2021 draft picks to playmakers who can help the Packers take it to the next level next season. It’s likely safe to assume at this point that they won’t be using their first-round pick on a quarterback.

24 responses to “Packers G.M. Brian Gutekunst: “No regrets” about 2020 draft

  1. We played in the NFCCG at home with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line. Gutekunst’s top 2 draft picks (QB Love, RB Dillion) combined for a whopping 3 carries for 17 yards. Gutekunst really doesn’t think there was a single available player who would have made a difference in the first two rounds? This guy is worse than Ted.

  2. Dillon is in line to start next year, and looks like he has a high ceiling.

    Runyan looks like he will be a starter as well.

    They did a nice job.

    .. gotta hit on a couple defenders this year.

  3. “Unless the plan was to take a quarterback who’d light a fire under the current quarterback, there should be regrets.”

    My thoughts exactly. I get this is what Gutekunst has to say but no one with a brain believes him.

  4. Anyone who says they did a nice job is drinking the Packer kool-aid. One of the worst drafts EVER and is comical people think otherwise. But suppose they’ve never successfully surrounded Brett or Aaron with offensive weapons so why start now?

  5. Gutekunst’s top 2 draft picks (QB Love, RB Dillion) combined for a whopping 3 carries for 17 yards.
    =====

    It was LaFleur’s choice to abandon the run.

    I think Dillon could have made a pretty big impact in that game. Particularly on the drive everyone is going insane over.

  6. Move makes perfect sense to me. You draft a QB and let him become an understudy for a couple of years much as Rodgers was under Favre. There are plenty of examples of QB’s who took a few years to find their groove (Steve Young, Rich Gannon immediately come to mind) so why not?

  7. But suppose they’ve never successfully surrounded Brett or Aaron with offensive weapons so why start now?
    =====

    Driver.. Jennings.. Jordy.. Finley.. Cobb.. Adams..

    Rodgers has nothing to complain about.

  8. With the benefit of hindsight, the fact that Gutekunst still can’t see/admit he could’ve done better, is confounding.

  9. The Packers have screwed up a lot of first-round draft picks over the years — so have most other teams. The hit rate on first-round picks around the league is not great. Look at the first round of the 2015 draft and tell me who won that draft. By my count, only 6 of the first round players are still with their original teams and at least two are currently out of the league.

  10. Anyone who says they did a nice job is drinking the Packer kool-aid.
    =====

    They got a starting RB, a starting lineman, and a couple role players. And hopefully their future starting QB.

    Under what standard is that a poor haul?

    What are you comparing this against? The ’74 Steelers? The ’86 49ers?

  11. “Unless the plan was to take a quarterback who’d light a fire under the current quarterback, there should be regrets.”

    Well using that logic, the Packers should not have drafted Rodgers in the 1st place. And if they didn’t, they might have been in the QB wilderness for the past 15 years and the NFCCG in 2020 may not have even been a discussion for the franchise.

  12. Short Term / Long Term views…

    Short Term: Aaron Rodgers was angry at the draft pick and became the league MVP again with Mahomes. That draft pick obviously motivated him. His play led them to one PI call / bad coaching decision away from a shot at the superbowl. Would having one more OL, WR, or CB helped them get over the hump? Maybe. Would Rodgers have played like that all season without the fire under him? Maybe.

    Long Term: You still don’t know what you have in Love and Dillon, but the QB and RB succession plan is in place and you don’t have to worry about it for the next 3-5 years.

  13. It was a dumb pick. The only way to salvage it is to trade Love for a 1st round pick if there is a team that wants him

  14. Would having one more OL, WR, or CB helped them get over the hump?
    =====

    20 sacks this year. Far and away the fewest of Rodgers career.

    Rodgers had the 2nd best year of his career, with FAR less talent than in 2011. I think he would have preferred another talented WR, and I think the team would have been better for it. But I just don’t see how that is a legit complaint considering the year he had.

    .. and rookie wideouts are a mixed bag as well. Look at Henry Ruggs.

    The D is another story. They need to upgrade @ ILB, and corner. That was a story on draft day, same as today.

  15. Gutekunst deserves credit for the defensive free agent signings and building one of the best O-lines in the NFL, but if he was honest, he should admit that he regrets the last draft. The Pack needed neither Love nor Dillon last season, but they did need WR and LB depth. Those who harp on the “develop a QB” theory are truly drinking green and gold koolaid, as you don’t draft and sit a young QB (with the favorable cap hit) in the modern NFL for multiple years, particularly when you have a HOF QB that intends to play through the entire rookie QB contract term. He tried to emulate TT and repeat history, but those days are long gone.

  16. Isn’t this the same team that drafted Rogers when Favre was still in his prime and gave him a clipboard for three years? If I recall when Rogers eventually started lighting the league up, people were calling the move “genius” and an “old school approach” after they were done eating their crow for relentlessly chastising it.
    Not saying Love will be the next Rogers, but I would hold off on any judgement for the time being.

  17. Questions? Heck yeah, I have questions: Why did they draft Rodgers with a HOF QB already on the roster? How did Rodgers benefit from watching and learning for three years before getting his opportunity? How many starting quarterbacks have the Packers had in the last thirty years? How difficult is it to plan for the future while maintaining a competitive edge? Why are outsiders still questioning the moves and motivations of a successful front office? Why won’t anyone listen to the actual words being spoken and instead insist on creating their own narrative? Etc., etc., etc. Lotsa questions.

  18. mikethevike11 says:
    February 1, 2021 at 11:52 am
    My thoughts exactly. I get this is what Gutekunst has to say but no one with a brain believes him.
    _______________

    The difference between good and Great GMs is often making unpopular decisions at the right time. Whether its cutting Josh Sitton, releasing Jordy Nelson, drafting the QB of the future, or letting a great RB walk. You make decisions on whats best for the TEAM not whats best for the QB.

  19. The Packers needed to upgrade at WR in an historically-rich draft at that position, and they opted to draft a QB.

    It was stupid then, and it’s looking even more stupid now that Rodgers is clearly one of the best QBs in the NFL and the Packers will get zero value out of Love continuing to sit on the pine.

    Even if the Packers hadn’t traded up from #30, the next 3 WRs drafted (Higgins, Pittman Jr, and Shenault) averaged ~700 yards and 4 TDs each. Any one of those guys would likely have put up higher numbers with Rodgers throwing to them.

    It’s disgusting that the Packers continue to waste prime years of Rodgers career.

  20. Even if the Packers hadn’t traded up from #30, the next 3 WRs drafted (Higgins, Pittman Jr, and Shenault) averaged ~700 yards and 4 TDs each. Any one of those guys would likely have put up higher numbers with Rodgers throwing to them.
    ______

    Devin Funchess probably would have done better than all of them, who was on their roster til he opted out due to the virus. Another thing FRANCHISE worthy QBs don’t come out every draft, if you don’t have a plan, you can’t bank on Mahomes or Rodgers like talent, thats how teams get stuck hoping JP Losman, Rex Grossman, or Christian Ponder turn out to be a franchise QB, when in reality many people know they aren’t worth the 1st round pick used on them.

  21. taugrim (Ed Park) says:
    February 1, 2021 at 6:58 pm

    Even if the Packers hadn’t traded up from #30, the next 3 WRs drafted (Higgins, Pittman Jr, and Shenault) averaged ~700 yards and 4 TDs each. Any one of those guys would likely have put up higher numbers with Rodgers throwing to them.

    +++++

    MVS had 690 yards receiving and 6 td’s. Green Bay finished 1st in points. WR did not hold the Packers back despite every armchair GM insisting it would.

  22. Exactly which instant-impact player might the Packers have taken instead of Love? The only name still on the board that comes to mind was Patrick Queen at ILB, and he was one of the worst linebackers in the league this season–frequently out of position, and missing tackles left and right.

    He might become a good player in the future–he’s the player I wanted the Packers to take at that spot–but he wouldn’t have made a difference for Green Bay this year.

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