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Green Bay Packers use free agency to bulk up defective pass rush, draft to fix secondary and get back to winning ways

Minnesota Vikings v Green Bay Packers Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

When you have one of the greatest quarterbacks of the generation, you’re always in contention.

The Packers got rid of Mike McCarthy and now they are back in the NFC Championship game, how were they put together?

Let’s take a look at the final team from championship weekend.

QB - Aaron Rodgers (2005 1st round pick)

RB - Aaron Jones (2017 5th round pick)

RB - Jamaal Williams (2017 4th round pick)

WR - Davante Adams (2014 2nd round pick, 4-year $58 million extension in 2017)

WR - Marquez Valdes-Scantling (2018 5th round pick)

WR - Allen Lazard (UDFA 2018)

WR - Geronimo Allison (UDFA 2016)

TE - Jimmy Graham (2010 3rd round pick, signed 3-year $30 million contract in 2018)

LT - David Bakhtiari (2013 4th round pick, signed 4-year $48 contract extension in 2016)

LG - Elgton Jenkins (2019 2nd round pick)

C- Corey Linsley (2014 5th round pick, signed 3-year $25.5 million contract extension in 2017)

RG - Billy Turner (2014 3rd round pick Dolphins, signed 4-year $28 contract in 2019)

RT - Bryan Bulaga (2010 1st round pick, signed 5-year $33.75 contract extension in 2015)

Offense Overall - The Packers are an anomaly. They are like the Patriots, where their way of building is likely not one that can be matched, however you have seen how not continuing to invest in wide receivers has changed their offensive style. They have Adams with over 900 yards then not another receiver over 500 yards, but Lazard, Valdes-Scantling and Graham all have over 400 yards.

Interesting how little in way of draft picks the Packers have invested. While four of the five are home grown draft picks, only Bulaga is a first rounder. How much of that is Rodgers?

DE - Dean Lowry (2016 4th round pick)

DT - Kenny Clark (2016 1st round pick)

DE - Tyler Lancaster (UDFA 2018)

OLB - Preston Smith (2015 2nd round pick Redskins, signed 4-year $52 million contract in 2019)

ILB - Blake Martinez (2016 4th round pick)

ILB - B.J. Goodson (2016 4th round pick Giants, traded to Packers for swap of 7th round pick in 2019)

OLB - Za’Darius Smith (2015 4th round pick Ravens, signed 4-year $66 million contract in 2019)

CB - Jaire Alexander (2018 1st round pick)

SS - Darnell Savage Jr. (2019 1st round pick)

FS - Adrian Amos (2015 5th round pick Bears, signed 4-year $37 million contract in 2019)

CB - Kevin King (2017 2nd round pick)

This has been my go-to as far as defense is concerned to emulate. The Packers have spent three first round picks on the defense, but most of the heavy lifting came from smart free agency contracts with established stars. They even doubled down in 2019 with the pick of Rashan Gary to make sure they have depth.

Of course, when you have Aaron Rodgers as the maestro of the offense, you can get away with less talent and splurge on defense.