GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers found their all-time leading receiver in the seventh round of the 1999 draft but since then have not found another pass-catcher that late in the selection process that has even become a regular contributor despite a relatively high number of receivers picked in the same round.
Since the Packers drafted Donald Driver in Round 7 more than 15 years ago, they have taken seven receivers in the seventh round.
If the latest, Jeff Janis of Saginaw Valley State, makes much of an impact, he will be the first one to do so since Driver.
Driver was the 26th receiver taken in the 1999 draft, the 213th player overall. Janis was the 30th receiver drafted this year and the 236th player overall.
When Driver retired after the 2012 season, he walked away as the Packers’ career leader in catches (743) and receiving yards (10,137), marks that still stand. The six seventh-round receivers taken by Green Bay between Driver and Janis combined to catch 19 passes for 138 yards for the Packers.
"I've always been a little bit of an underdog throughout my career," said Janis, who played at the Division II level because he did not have a single Division I offer. "It helps your character and helps you work a little bit harder. That's what I want to show: that I'm willing to work and I'm willing to contribute on the team in any way."
Here's a look at the seventh-round receivers the Packers have selected after Driver and before Janis:
Charles Johnson, Grand Valley State (No. 216 overall): Was injured for most of the offseason and never had much of chance to make the team as a rookie. Was re-signed to the practice squad, but the Cleveland Browns signed him to their active roster on Oct. 12 only to discover that Johnson had a torn ACL. He remains on the Browns’ roster.
Kevin Dorsey, Maryland (No. 224): Like Johnson, was injured for most of the offseason and never had much of a chance to make the team. Spent the entire season on injured reserve because of a toe problem. Remains on the 90-man roster and will have a chance to compete for a roster spot.
Brett Swain, San Diego State (No. 217): After spending his rookie season on the practice squad, was on the active roster in 2009 and 2010 but appeared in only 22 of 32 games (mostly on special teams) and caught just six passes for 72 yards. Played in five games for the 49ers in 2011.
DeAndrew Rubin, South Florida (No. 253): Also was billed as a kick returner but was released in training camp as a rookie. Spent time in camp with several other NFL teams but never played in a regular-season game.
Carl Ford, Toledo (No. 256): Like Rubin, was released in his rookie training camp but went on to play in 10 games for the Bears in 2005.
Charles Lee, Central Florida (No. 242): Made the roster coming out of camp and appeared in all but one regular-season game. Showed some promise by catching 10 passes for 134 yards as a rookie, but then appeared in only seven games in 2001 and caught just three passes for 32 yards. Went on to play in 22 more games with the Buccaneers (2002-04) and the Cardinals (2005).