ESPN Wisconsin

Packers GM Thompson meets the press

Apr 19, 2012 -- 1:32pm

By DREW OLSON
dolson@espnwisconsin.com

Packers general manager Ted Thompson held a pre-draft press conference this afternoon at Lambeau Field. Since Jason Wilde was traveling at the time, I asked intern Andrew Dunn-Bauman to transcribe some of the comments to serve our regular customers until Wilde can post a story.

Here is a sampling of Ted's comments:

On Nick Collins' progress in a comeback from neck surgery:

"Still a process. Which it has been. It's a process that continues, we don't have any determination at this point. I'm sure he's anxious and all of our people are anxious. I think it's more important to do it right than to do it fast. We'll see."

On whether or not they need to draft a safety to replace Collins:

"We feel like our roster is balanced enough overall. We don't feel like we have to target any particular position in the draft. That's not what we do (normally) and we won't do it this year."

On the drafting process:

"It's an interesting process. It's a grind. We have the kind of grind meetings before the combine. There's some redundancy but sometimes that helps us. Helps me to kind of get more than less."

Lesson learned as a GM with the draft:

"You can't predict it. You can worry yourself sick about what's going to happen. Evaluate the players individually, don't get too whacked out in terms of position, just try to make sure you have the players ranked correctly in terms of what you think they can do in the NFL. That's easier said than done. I'm guilty of it, just like everybody else. You get anxious you want to help the team, you want to add some stuff to your team and to your locker room and get the right kind of people."

On which rounds he focuses on:

"We treat all the rounds very seriously. And quite frankly our signing of free agents after the draft is something we're very, very keen on."

On whether he has a list of players he wants to trade up for:

"It's difficult to predict who might be there. That's usually comes as a surprise. Whether it's us trying to trade up or somebody else trying to trade up it usually comes as a surprise. And all of a sudden you say 'this guy's still on the board, let's go get him.'"

View of the talent pool in this draft:

"From a league-wide standpoint, this is a really good draft, and everybody will be happy and all the teams will draft well. That's the message everybody wants. There's always areas going into the draft that you think are strong, and other areas you think might not be as strong as before. Most drafts wind up being about the same in quality."

On whether or not the draft will be more defensive-minded:

"We won't do it intentionally. Maybe subconsciously. You draft for long-term investment for your team. We don't draft for a perceived immediate need."

On how to succeed being a quarterback under 6-feet tall (Russell Wilson):

"People make compensations for things as they go along in life. I don't think you can ever say never. You're too big, you're too tall, you're not tall enough, I don't think Russell Wilson is worried about any of that."

 

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