It’s been frustrating being a Green Bay Packers fan during the offseason for the past couple of years. The team has taken a conservative approach to building its team, choosing to build through an accumulation of late round draft picks and developing players. It seemed to work well almost a decade ago, according to NFL.com, as the front office found stars outside the First Round (Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb are two excellent examples).

However, the past few years the talent found in later rounds has dropped.

Don’t miss on the latest updates Follow the NFL Channel

Although second rounder, Davante Adams looks to be turning into a star in the NFL, if he already isn’t considered at that level. However, the talent from the Packers’ draft has dropped the past couple of years.

The players from the 2017 draft still need some time to develop, which is understandable as no players were first-round draft picks and the first draft pick for the Packers, Kevin King, was injured much of the 2017-2018 football season. But the lack of significant impact players from the past couple of years has left the Green Bay roster somewhat weak, particularly in the secondary at the cornerback position and at the linebacker position.

There is renewed hope that the moves made in the front office this offseason, specifically the hire of Brian Gutekunst (a report made by Chris Wesseling from NFL.com), would help bring talent to a team on the brink of a Super Bowl run with the top quarterback in the game. What the Packers did in the first round of the 2018 Nfl Draft has me excited that this prediction becomes more likely.

2018 NFL draft

The Packers had the 14th overall selection coming into the 2018 NFL draft [VIDEO]. The needs for the team were primarily, if not exclusively, on the defensive end. The defense had two areas in which they needed to improve, which incidentally go hand-in-hand: pass-rusher and defensive-back, specifically cornerback.

There were intriguing prospects that the Packers could potentially pick at 14, including versatile defensive backs Derwin James and Minkah Fitzpatrick as well as a pass rusher like Marcus Davenport. Minkah Fitzpatrick was picked before the Packers picked, but both James and Davenport were still on the board at 14. However, the Packers traded their pick to the Saints, moving back to pick 27 in the draft while also acquiring a fifth-round pick of this years’ draft and a first-round pick of the 2019 draft, according to Mike Spofford from packers.com. This trade was reminiscent of strategies of previous years, moving back in the draft to accumulate draft picks. This was not the move I wanted.

The Packers need to obtain great talent now and there were still talented players at positions of need at pick 14 which likely wouldn’t last to pick 27. But, shortly after, the front office moved up from 27 to pick 18, trading with the Seattle Seahawks, according to Sean Wagner-McGough from CBSSports.com. (The Packers gave up a 3rd round pick and 6th round pick while gaining a 7th round pick in addition to the first round pick swap with the Seahawks.) With this pick, the Packers were able to draft Jaire Alexander with the 18th pick. After being upset with the initial trade with the Saints, I was ecstatic with the Seahawks trade and subsequent pick. Alexander likely would’ve been a player the Packers picked at 14 anyway, but he fell to them at pick 18. So to summarize the first round action on the Packers end, they essentially moved back just 4 spots and gave up a 3rd and 6th round pick for a 6th and 7th round pick as well as a valuable 2019 first round pick. And the 4 spots that the Packers may not have been of any detriment to the Packers as they were able to pick what many considered the second-best corner in the draft: Jaire Alexander. This was a great pick, just what Green Bay needs.

Jaire Alexander

Jaire Alexander excels as a man to man cover corner, something that the Packers desperately need. He has the speed to keep up with NFL receivers as he ran a 4.38 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, according to NFL.com. Alexander also has great quickness to allow him to close passing windows and make plays on the ball, which is evident in college as he had a combined 6 interceptions in the past two years of his college career. And once the interception is made, it doesn’t stop there; Alexander has great return ability as he returned punts at times at Louisville.

The two concerns with Alexander are that he does not have great size for an NFL corner (5’10” and 196 pounds) and he had injury issues this past year (only playing 7 games) according to NFL.com. Jaire Alexander had both knee and hand issues that he dealt with that led to him missing many games. The knee injury, more so than the hand injury, is more concerning as it hopefully does not follow Alexander to the NFL. If Jaire Alexander can avoid injury, his skills and abilities should help the Packers fill a need and hopefully help to change a weakness into a strength.

In summary, the new Green Bay front office had an excellent first round in the draft. They secured a talented player at a position in need while also obtaining a first round pick in the 2019 NFL draft. The front office is looking more aggressive than in recent years and so far it seems to be working well, both in the draft and in free agency.