The Packers, and those teams led by former disciples of former Green Bay general manager Ron Wolf, are known in NFL circles for doing things differently as they prepare for the NFL Draft.
Bucky Brooks played for the Packers under Wolf in 1996 and 1997. He went on to be a scout and spent time working for the Seattle Seahawks while both Ted Thompson and John Schneider were on the staff. He now writes about the draft for NFL.com.
Brooks says, from what he knows, the Packers are among teams known for having a lot of front office staff — scouts and executives, mostly — in the room at the same time, all watching a lot of film on a player being considered. This is in contrast to other teams who may have one or a few scouts watch each player in-depth before presenting their findings to the group.
“A lot of teams will read reports [on players], allow their scouts to scout and then they talk about it,” said Brooks. “In Green Bay, in those other rooms, in San Francisco and Seattle, what we do is we watch the tape as a group, we talk about the players individually, and then you make a group decision to put them on the [draft] board.”
This process, taught to people like Thompson and Schneider by Ron Wolf, can be time-consuming. The upside is you get more eyes on each player; and if it works for your team, why not spend a little more time?
“Everyone sees each player, and because of that you have an opportunity to make good decisions on players,” said Brooks. “You still have some mistakes at times, but I think it eliminates the gray area, gives you an opportunity to really field a great draft.”
Brooks also says Thompson, despite his quiet persona in front of cameras, has “much more personality” than he’s given credit for. Brooks also calls Thompson an “outstanding evaluator” of possible NFL talent.