First-round conundrums linger for Aaron Rodgers, Packers

It's perhaps likely that the Green Bay Packers' latest first-round pick will not play a significant down of football in the upcoming season.

Yet a prevailing Packers storyline is likely to be the first-round pick – whether it's Jordan Love, Marcedes Lewis or all the ones never selected by Green Bay.

Love recently signed his rookie contract with the Packers, the latest step for the team in an unpredictable offseason that truly began when Love was drafted, becoming the third quarterback drafted in the first round by Green Bay with a QB who had previously won most valuable player still on the roster, according to NFL Research.

Going forward, a prevailing question for the Packers' fortunes is that on top of Rodgers and Co. receiving no immediate help from the first round, will too much Love talk become a distraction?

Packers First-Round QB Selections With MVP QB on Roster

(Per NFL Research)

MVP Starter 1st-Round QB Draft

GB Aaron Rodgers Jordan Love 2020

HOF Brett Favre Aaron Rodgers 2005

HOF Bart Starr Don Horn 1967

While Love was taken in the first round and running back A.J. Dillon was taken in the second despite the presence of Aaron Jones and his career season last year, no help at wide receiver was selected for Rodgers or No. 1 wideout Davante Adams, who's been a one-man show in the WR corps for multiple seasons now.

All the while, a now-infamous statistic emerged as Rodgers has thrown just one career touchdown pass to a first-round draft pick, the fewest by a country mile among the eight quarterbacks in NFL history to have won multiple most valuable player accolades. Rodgers -- whose single score to a first-rounder didn't come until last season to Lewis, who was drafted in the opening round of the 2006 draft by the Jaguars -- is 60 touchdown passes behind Johnny Unitas, whose 61 to first-round picks are second-least among multi-time MVPs, per NFL Research.

As soon as Love was drafted, the similarities between the Packers drafting Rodgers with Brett Favre still slinging it came to the forefront. In looking back at that situation, though, Rodgers rode the pine for three seasons, and Love is very much a project. In his final season at Utah State, Love led the FBS with 17 interceptions. In contrast, Rodgers' career high in the NFL was 13 during his first season as a starter.

With a hole that seemed glaring to most at wideout, the Packers were instead one of 10 NFL teams who did not select a wide receiver this past draft. Per NFL Research, Green Bay hasn't picked a wide receiver in the first round since Javon Walker in 2002.

Perhaps it's testimony to just how good Rodgers has been as he's had an outstanding run with second-round standouts such as Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb and now Adams, who's likely the best of that second-round bunch.

The reigning NFC North champions have had a bit of a head-scratching offseason.

How fruitful the Packers' 2019 draft is in the long term won't be revealed for autumns to come, but how it bodes for the 2020 Packers' title hopes a season removed from an NFC Championship Game berth is going to be an enticing topic for the season ahead.

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