Best and worst of Ted Thompson's drafts: Receivers


GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Ted Thompson has picked 96 players in the 10 drafts he has run as general manager of the Green Bay Packers. Like any personnel man who makes the final call, he has his share of hits and misses.

Leading up to the start of the draft on April 30, we will examine Thompson's best and worst picks at each position group.

So far, we've covered quarterbacks and running backs.

Next up, receivers:

Total players drafted: 14 -- Craig Bragg, Terrence Murphy, Cory Rodgers, Greg Jennings, David Clowney, James Jones, Brett Swain, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb, Kevin Dorsey, Charles Johnson, Davante Adams, Jared Abbrederis, Jeff Janis.

Best pick: Nelson

Nelson (second round, 2008) is one of only two players in franchise history to compile two seasons with 85-plus catches and 1,300-plus receiving yards. Sterling Sharpe (in 1989 and 1992) was the other. Nelson ranks second in the league among all receivers with 43 touchdowns since 2011. Only Dallas' Dez Bryant, with 50, has more. After signing a four-year, $39 million contract extension last July, Nelson posted his best season with 98 catches for 1,519 yards and 13 touchdowns.

Honorable mention: Jennings, Cobb

Worst pick: Rodgers

The fourth-round pick in 2006 remains the highest Thompson draft pick to get released in his rookie training camp. Billed as a potential return man, he struggled just to catch punts, let alone return them. The Packers wasted $465,120 in signing-bonus money on Rodgers. He had a brief stint on the San Francisco 49ers' practice squad but never played in an NFL game.

Dishonorable mention: Clowney

Notes: Thompson has never drafted a receiver in the first round. However, he has taken five in the second round (Murphy in 2005, Jennings in 2006, Nelson in 2008, Cobb in 2011 and Adams in 2014). … Murphy sustained a career-ending neck injury in the third game of his rookie season. … Clowney (fifth round in 2007) played in 28 career games combined for the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers from 2008-10. He caught one touchdown pass. ... Johnson (seventh round, 2013) was signed off the Packers' practice squad by the Cleveland Browns, who then discovered he had a torn ACL. After surgery, Johnson landed with the Vikings and caught 31 passes for 475 yards and two touchdowns last season.