Welcome to the Brian Gutekunst Heel Turn
Did you watch wrestling as a kid? Do you still watch wrestling? No judgment if you do, but you know the term ‘heel turn.’ If you do not watch wrestling, it is when a popular wrestler, often known as a babyface, turns heel, a bad guy. Brian Gutekunst is doing his best Hollywood Hogan impression through three rounds of the NFL Draft. Gutekunst went from a guy who drafted Jaire Alexander, signed four premier free agents to a guy people want to be fired for three draft picks. Life comes at you quick. Gutekunst is building a roster in a way that none of us saw coming and for some, this is driving them crazy. Packers did not take receiver through the three rounds but that didn’t disappoint Gutey which surely needled Packers fans more.
Is Packers GM Brian Gutekunst disappointed to not have drafted a WR yet?
"No, not really. We have to trust our work and the board."
— Matt Schneidman (@mattschneidman) April 25, 2020
Trust the board feels like the NFL’s version of ‘Trust the process.’ In his mind, Gutekunst believes any receiver selected at 26, 62, or 94 would have been a reach. Sometimes, this can happen when you’re a successful football team. If Packers drafted when the Philadelphia did at 20, Justin Jefferson or Jalen Reagor might be Packers. But Packers won more games than the Eagles. In the first three rounds, there has not been one receiver available that would have felt like a reach to Gutekunst and company. Still, there will be critics.
Seventeen receivers from what's expected to be the deepest class in a long, long time were drafted in the first three rounds. The #Packers drafted none of them. If they get any WR help from this draft, it will have to be Day 3.
— Ryan Wood (@ByRyanWood) April 25, 2020
While this will be a popular thing to talk about on Monday, consider where Green Bay selected in each round. The first-round talent was gone by 26. By 62, the second round talent also let the building. By the third round, Devin Duvernay gets picked a few spots before Green Bay. Some will contend why not move up? That’s a fair question, but Green Bay doesn’t do business that way. It is important to understand how Green Bay operates its team before you dress them down for not doing what you wanted them to do.
As I’ve pointed with the A.J. Dillon and Josiah Deguara pieces today, Green Bay changed their philosophy on offense this offseason and told no one in the media. It is amazing how this didn’t get leaked out in the world of sources and Twitter. Maybe we should have seen it coming knowing that LaFleur comes from the Shanahan tree and how the Packers looked last year didn’t match a Shanahan team. But we didn’t and that plus missing out on a very hyped receiver class makes Brian Gutekunst the bad guy. A role that Ted Thompson knew all too well.
If Packers win another division title and make the playoffs again, no one will complain about what they did in the NFL Draft. But if things go south this year, no matter the circumstances, people will go livid and point to this draft.
Embrace the chaos, Gute.