The Unpacking Future Packers Countdown is a countdown of 100 prospects that could be selected by the Green Bay Packers in the 2023 NFL draft.
Typically around this time of year, Andrei Iosvias would be competing as a member of the Princeton Indoor Track and Field team. Instead, the Princeton wide receiver is ready to take center stage at the NFL Scouting Combine, where he’s likely going to create some buzz.
“The thing about him that a lot of people don’t understand is that he’s practiced football half as much as anybody that’s at the combine right now,” Princeton wide receivers coach Brian Flinn said. “Every December to May he was doing track.
Iosivas finished his Track and Field career with several records to his name. He owns the Ivy league record in the heptathlon and his 6.71 time in the 60-meter dash is an NCAA Indoor Championships meet record.
“This is a guy who taught himself how to pole vault,” Flinn said. “He’s an unbelievable high jumper. What he did was the most physically demanding event in track. The heptathlon is grueling. There are seven events in the indoor version. It’s everything in a two-day span. He broke the Ivy League record and was third in the country. The speed transfers to the football field. He’s mentally tough. He puts himself in difficult situations and he learns and gets better. The work habits, and mental and physical toughness will pay off for him.”
On the football field, Iosivas has gotten better each season. The Hawaii native caught 18 passes for 263 yards and four touchdowns in 2019. Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, Princeton did not have a season in 2020. In 2021, Iosivas caught 41 passes for 703 yards and five touchdowns. This past season, he reeled in 66 passes for 943 yards and seven touchdowns.
“He was great,” Flinn said. “He should have been the Ivy League Offensive MVP. He was head and shoulders the best player on offense in our league.”
During Princeton’s final five games, Iosivas caught 35 passes for 496 yards and four touchdowns, including two games where he had over 150 yards receiving.
“This season there were days during week seven, week eight, and week nine where you could see him getting better,” Flinn said. “He’s the best player in our league, but he’s doing things today on a Wednesday that he wasn’t doing two Wednesdays ago. He’s a very good player right now, but he’s not anywhere near where he’s going to be.”
At 6-3, 212 pounds with world-class athleticism, Iosivas is a run-after-the-catch weapon. He has the quickness to run away from defenders and destroy pursuit angles. According to that Pro Football FocusIosivas racked up 430 yards after the catch this past season.
“That might be the single most area he improved,” Flinn said. “It’s an NFL style of practice for us, so we don’t tackle to the ground. So Andrei doesn’t get a ton of reps. We don’t do padded one-on-ones here. His first padded one-on-one reps were down at the Senior Bowl against Power Five school kids. He’s not tackled unless it’s in the game. He just got a lot better at it this year. He was making guys miss. He was dropping his shoulder.”
For his career, Iosivas has seven drops, with three of them coming on 85 targets this past season. Iosivas is a dynamic athlete, with good lower body flexibility and he explodes in and out of his breaks. Flinn said that Iosivas is a very good route runner and will only continue to get better once an NFL team gets its hands on him.
“He’s very good,” Flinn said. “I think the knock on the straight-ahead fast guys is that they can’t run routes and can’t change direction. Andrei can drop his hips. He can get in and out of breaks. With a full year dedicated to him and his flexibility with his explosion, he’s going to get a lot better at it. Limited route tree is what people say. There is no route he hasn’t run. He can do it, there is no doubt. As good as he is. I don’t think he’s a finished product in any aspect. He just hasn’t practiced that much. He sure will be when somebody gets him into camp.”
Fit with the Packers
It’s no secret that the Green Bay Packers need more playmakers. Christian Watson has the makings of Green Bay’s new No. 1 wide receiver. When he was healthy, Watson managed to be a dynamic playmaker for the Packers during his rookie season.
Romeo Doubs seems like an ideal No. 3 wide receiver with the upside to develop into the team’s No. 2 targets. Samori Toure played limited snaps during his rookie season and likely has a spot on the wide receiver depth chart.
With those three in place, the Packers need to continue to add talent to the room. With his athleticism and upside, Iosivas could be a day-three target for Brian Gutekunst as he looks to add more speed to the offense.
“Outside of the measurables, this is a guy who has so much good football ahead of him,” Flinn said. “When he trains just for football he’s just going to become a great player. He’s a huge upside go. There is film of him playing well and being the best player in our league. A wide receivers coach is really going to sharpen his game when you get him for 12 months of the year. When before, he spent six months being one of the best track athletes in the United States.”
There will be a lot of buzz surrounding the Princeton wide receiver after he’s done running through the on-field drills at the combine. Aside from his enticing athleticism, Flinn said that Iosivas would be a great locker room addition for any team.
“There is not a more coachable and better person than Andrea,” Flinn said. “He’s always in a good mood. He’s always upbeat. He’s a great teammate. He’s not a yeller or a screamer as a leader, but a guy who will see somebody struggling and go up next to them and put some words in their ear that they need to hear. The receiver position is like coaching a basketball team sometimes, there are not enough basketballs sometimes, and there are not enough shots. A guy in four years that we could have targeted 25 times a game and no one would have said a word. In the games where he caught three balls or four balls or less, he never said a word. Never had bad body language, never shrugged his shoulders, never rolled his eyes. Nothing.”
Iosivas has three years of Ivy League football under his belt. Due to COVID-19, he didn’t get a full four years of collegiate football. On top of that, he spent half his time at Princeton competing and training for the track and field season.
There is so much untapped potential in his 6-3 frame. With his work ethic, attention to detail, and athleticism, Iosivas could be a player that Gutekunst targets early on day three of the 2023 NFL Draft.