The Green Bay Packers didn’t help themselves for this season with their first-round NFL Draft pick, and it cost them a win on their futures odds at William Hill.
When teams have a championship window that’s currently open, they usually try to improve their club for the coming season with their first-round pick in the NFL Draft. The Baltimore Ravens, for example, had a glaring hole at middle linebacker and were able to land the best one in the 2020 draft class in LSU’s Patrick Queen at No. 28 overall. The Green Bay Packers, though, decided to look toward the future with their first pick last week, and accordingly their win total on the NFL futures odds at William Hill sportsbook has dropped from 10 to 9.
Despite Aaron Rodgers being in his prime at age 36 and having signed a mammoth contract less than two years ago – one the Packers absolutely can’t get out of until after the 2021 season – Green Bay traded up a few spots in the 2020 NFL Draft to take talented but raw Utah State quarterback Jordan Love.
Yes, the Packers choosing Rodgers 24th in the 2005 draft when Brett Favre was still in his prime obviously worked out incredibly well in the long run. However, Rodgers was a much higher-ranked prospect that year, a potential No. 1 overall pick, than Love is. In addition, Green Bay badly needed receiving help this season and there were a handful of very good wideouts on the board when it picked Love.
In one way this could work out, though: If it lights a first under Rodgers to play even better in 2020. He’s mega-competitive and likes to carry a chip on his shoulder to this day that Alex Smith went No. 1 overall in the 2005 draft and he didn’t. NBC Sports’ Peter King reported that Rodgers was “pissed off” about the Love pick and the Packers not getting immediate offensive help.
It appears Packers coach Matt LaFleur is trying to transition the Packers to more of a running team. They went from leading the NFL in drop-back percentage (71.5%) in 2018 to being 13th in the league (63.7%) in 2019. Green Bay took a running back in the draft in Boston College’s AJ Dillon at No. 62 overall but not a single wideout.
While the Packers’ win total has slipped from 10 to 9, the Over is a -120 favorite at William Hill. Green Bay remains the slight NFC North favorite at +140 with Minnesota (+150) right behind.