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Interest by Packers catches J.C. Tretter by surprise

By Jay Skurski

J.C. Tretter saw the ‘920’ Wisconsin area code pop up on his phone and figured the moment had arrived.

It had.

The Green Bay Packers were calling this afternoon to inform Tretter they were drafting him into the NFL, using the 122nd overall selection in the fourth round.

"It was wild," Tretter said. "I talked to a bunch of people in the organization, and it started to well up inside me. I think back to all those times doing all the hard work and putting everything you can into and knowing what you've dreamed of is finally coming true, I'm just extremely excited about it."

Tretter didn’t have the Packers on his radar coming into the draft. He had met with them informally at the combine, but didn’t make a pre-draft visit or work out for them.

"That was all the contact that I had," he said. "They weren't one of the teams that were high up on my ideas of who would be interested."

Nevertheless, Tretter lands in a solid spot. He gets to block for MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who signed a contract extension just days ago that made him the highest-paid player in the NFL.

"It's a perfect fit I feel like. It'll be great to get with Aaron and see what he sees, get on the same page with him. He's a great guy to learn from with all that he's done at quarterback," Tretter said. "I'm really looking forward to getting out there."

Tretter will graduate from Cornell on May 26 with a bachelor's degree in industrial labor relations, then relocate to Wisconsin.

He said the Packers haven't given him any indication as to which position he'll play, but most of his pre-draft work has been on the interior of the offensive line at guard and center. He played the first two years of his college career at tight end, then the last two at left tackle.

"They didn't give me a clear-cut idea of what position it was that they were interested in," he said. "I wanted to be as versatile as possible and I wanted to be able to help the team out wherever they needed help. I'll do whatever they want of me."

Tretter celebrated today surrounded by friends and family, including his father, Joe, mother, Cynthia, and sister, Katherine. He was also joined by some of his Cornell teammates.

"We tried to keep it kind of small. We wanted it to be quiet enough where you could hear everything, see what's developing," he said. "We've got a big crowd hanging out now. It’s great."


2013 draft | J.C. Tretter
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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |