With the 2021 NFL Draft right around the corner, it is time to get acquainted with or to refamiliarize yourself with the trade value chart–especially with a Green Bay Packers team under Brian Gutekunst that frequently moves around.
The trade value chart was a concept developed by Jimmy Johnson during his early years as the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys as a way to assign a quantitative value to each draft pick to help determine whether a trade was fair or foul.
Since then, other teams have put their own spin on the chart and you may see different values assigned to each pick. But the idea is the same, and for the most part, Johnson’s design has stood the test of time.
Below is a look at this year’s chart courtesy of Saints Wire along with each Green Bay Packers’ pick and the value associated with it:
During all three of his draft as GM, Gutekunst has made at least one trade and has moved up in the first round to get his guy every year. In 2018, Gutey first traded back with New Orleans to pick 27 before quickly moving back up to pick 18 with the Seattle Seahawks to grab Jaire Alexander. Later on, the Packers would move up to take Oren Burks in Round 3.
The following year, Gutekunst was on the move once again, trading the 30th pick along with a pair of fourth-rounders to move up to 21 overall to select Darnell Savage. And of course, in 2020, Green Bay would move from pick 30 to pick 26 to take Jordan Love.
When using the trade value chart, rarely are trades going to align perfectly mathematically. Let’s look at the move up for Savage as an example. The Seahawks held the 21st pick, which has a value of 261. The Green Bay Packers gave up pick 30 (196), pick 114 (29), and pick 118 (26), totaling 251. So by this chart, it was a slightly better deal for Green Bay.
Now let’s look at the trade that landed Jordan Love. The 26th pick, which was held by the Miami Dolphins, has a value of 223. The Packers sent Miami pick 30 (196) and pick 136 (18), which totals 214. Again, this trade slightly favored Green Bay.
As we look ahead to the 2021 NFL draft, given how the first three drafts under Gutey have gone, we always have to be mindful of the first-round trade up. And if that’s the case again, an ideal trade partner would be Indianapolis at pick 21, who has a few needs to fill but is low on draft capital.
On the flip side, given the depth in this year’s class at positions of need such as receiver, offensive tackle, and cornerback, trading down and netting an additional third or fourth-round pick while still landing an immediate impact player is something that I imagine is on Green Bay’s radar.
Either way, chances are the Green Bay Packers are going to make a move at some point in the draft. Gutekunst has been far more aggressive than Ted Thompson was in that regard. So when draft night finally gets here, be sure to have your trade value chart handy.