Andrew Datko

Draft Grades: Green Bay Packers

As good as the Green Bay Packers looked at times in 2011, they had some significant holes to fill this offeason. Ted Thompson elected to stay quiet through most of free agency, but came up big with another strong draft class which should help in their quest for another Super Bowl title.

I was somewhat surprised to see Nick Perry still on the board at No. 28. While he would have benefited from returning to USC for another year, his raw talent is undeniable. Green Bay is the perfect place for Perry, who won’t feel the pressure to perform immediately. He will likely start from day one, but he won’t be the center of attention on a defense featuring Clay Matthews and A.J. Hawk. It’s a great place for him to learn and develop, while also providing some immediate help.

Jerel Worthy could be a steal in the 2nd round, but we’ll have to see how the Packers use him. The Packers like oversized, space-eating defensive ends in their 3-4 defense, and Worthy is capable of filling that role. But he’ll need to stay in shape, because he’s just a few big meals away from looking more like a nose tackle.

I also like the selection of Casey Hayward, who could step into a starting role at some point this year. The 2nd round may have been early for Hayward, but the Packers needed to add an instant-impact player in the secondary.

Mike Daniels is more of a traditional 3-4 end, at least compared to Worthy. His upside may be somewhat limited, but he has the potential to provide some depth in the front seven.

Jerron McMillian was a reach in the 4th round. There was very little talent at the strong safety position in this draft and it felt like the Packers reached to add depth at a position of need. It’s an acceptable strategy in some situations, but the Packers got carried away with this one. Due to the lack of depth at the position he should make the final roster, but he’s a purely developmental prospect who offers little immediate value.

Terrell Manning could prove to be one of the great steals of this draft. He’s an explosive sideline-to-sideline linebacker who should excel at inside linebacker in Green Bay. The depth chart is crowded, so he may not see the field much early, but he definitely has a future in the league.

Andrew Datko has battled injuries which contributed to his fall the 7th round, but he’s well worth the risk at this point in the draft. The Packers will likely groom him behind Bryan Bulaga at right tackle.

I’m not as high on B.J. Coleman as some, but I can’t argue with the selection in the 7th round. He clearly has the measurables of an NFL quarterback and will have the opportunity to be brought along slowly in Green Bay. It’s a good situation for Coleman, and a nice opportunity for Green Bay to develop a prospect behind Rodgers.

Overall, this was one of the better draft classes in the league, something which is becoming common for Ted Thompson. Few GMs in the league understand the importance of finding value in the late rounds better than Thompson, who consistently plucks future starters from the scrap heap late in the draft.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Draft Grades - 2012, Packers 1 Comment

Andrew Datko scouting report

Andrew Datko OT Florida State #67
Ht: 6’6″

Wt: 315

 
Strengths:
Prototypical size. Four-year starter. Solid all-around fundamentals. Gets into position quickly out of his stance. Fairly quick feet and consistently shows good footwork; can slide outside to stay with athletic edge rushers. A mauler as a run blocker; stays low and can drive his man back. Decent athleticism; can get to the second level and can run on screens plays. A team leader; great communicator and clearly a leader on the field.
Weaknesses:
Serious injury concerns. Missed time in 2010 preseason with shoulder injury and again during the regular season. Underwent shoulder surgery prior to 2011 season. Re-injured shoulder during 2011 season and missed remainder of season and the combine due to surgery. Athleticism is adequate, but he will struggle with elite pass rushers at next level; probably best suited to play on the right side. Limited strength; makes up for is with solid fundamentals, but he will simply be overpowered by some of the game’s elite bull rushers.
Comments:
If healthy, Datko would be a very safe mid-round pick. While he lacks the elite measurables and athleticism, what you see is what you get. He’s technically sound and a hard worker and, at worst, will be a very reliable backup who potentially can play four positions on the line. However, the repeated shoulder injuries (to both shoulders at various points in his career) are a definite concern. Depends on his medical checkups, it’s possible he will receive some undraftable grades from teams.
Videos:
2011 vs Oklahoma 
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2012 1 Comment