The Green Bay Packers used the 50th overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft to select wide receiver Jayden Reed, a dynamic playmaker from Michigan State.
Here’s our instant analysis of the Packers taking Reed in the second round:
Reed is smaller (5-11, 187) and far from the top tester (6.74 RAS), and he battled through injuries as a senior at Michigan State, making his selection at No. 50 a little bit surprising. He was Dane Brugler’s No. 80 overall player. But Reed did catch over 200 career passes and brings impressive speed (Packers had him at 4.37) and return ability (three punt return touchdowns) to the table. Can he overcome his lack of size and become a dependable big-play threat? In a smaller receiver class, the Packers probably had to soften some of their thresholds to get one. If nothing else, Reed looks like a nice complement to Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs.
The first thing I thought when I heard this pick was: quick game. Reed is an elusive receiver known for his run-after-catch ability. He will be a nice piece for Love in that he can turn easy throws into explosive gains. Reed also returned kicks and punts in college, with three punts returned for touchdowns. Gutekunst may have overdrafted a bit here since Reed didn’t test well and was considered an early day 3 pick. However, it’s hard to argue with the team’s illustrious history of finding receivers in the second round.
Jayden Reed is a three-level threat, but his trump card is his ability to win vertically. He has an instant accelerator and a 4.45 speed. He’s a YAC threat and an eager blocker. On top of what he brings to the offense, Reed finished his career with three punt return touchdowns. The Packers continue to get Jordan Love weapons.
The Packers broke their big-bodied mold at the receiver position by selecting Jayden Reed, who is just under 5-11 and weighs 187 pounds. His versatility, however, was key in the Packers selecting him. Reed can play inside because of his strength and on the boundary because of his speed. He’s someone who has YAC ability, could be utilized on jet sweeps, and as a return man on special teams.