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Packers take sick 'em Sun Devil

by Mark Daniels

The final day of the 2014 draft had Packers General Manager Ted Thompson select an edge rushing linebacker with some power in Arizona State Junior Carl Bradford. The 121st overall pick in round four had one job to do for the Sun Devils, get the quarterback. He did with regularity, posting 8 1/2 sacks in his final season, 21 for his career. Bradford also recorded 43 tackles for losses, breaking into the top 10 all time at ASU. He is on the short side, just a shade under 6-1 and 250 pounds. Director of College Scouting Brian Gutenkunst said the lack of height is probably why he stayed on the board until day 3. Gutenkunst said Bradford played almost exclusively outside and more often than not, with his hand on the ground as a pass rusher. Playing more of a traditional stand up linebacker in the pros will be a transition for him and there's a possibility he made get a look inside with the Pack's 3-4 scheme. The native of Norco, California was a highly regarded fullback coming out of high school but made the switch to defense when he arrived at Arizona State. For his sophomore and junior seasons, Bradford took over the "Devil" linebacker role in the defense and cut loose his pass rushing skills. Gutenkunst says he's not just a skirt the edge player, he has counter moves and above average strength to power his way through blockers. Bradford put up impressive weight room numbers and tested well at the combine, running the 40 in 4.72, a vertical leap of 37 1/2, a broad jump over 10 feet and he benched 225 pounds 23 times. Bradford made a couple of All Pac 12 teams while at ASU and was an honorable mention All American. The Packers want to turn up the heat on opposing quarterbacks and Bradford's arrival will push Nick Perry, Mike Neal and Andy Mulumba for snaps. He becomes the third defensive player taken in this draft, one at each level of the defense with third round pick, defensive lineman Khyri Thornton of Southern Mississippi and first rounder Ha Ha Clinton Dix, the Alabama safety.

Another Wisconsin Badger has been taken. Running back James White was the 130th overall pick in the 4th round, taken by the New England Patriots. Dez Southward to Atlanta and Chris Borland to San Francisco, were chosen in the third round Friday night.