At A Glance: Packers Training Camp Day 2
The Green Bay Packers were back at it Friday morning for another practice in “shells,” but had to go inside the Don Hutson Center because of rain.
Among the highlights of Friday’s workout was the play of second-round draft pick Jerel Worthy, who might live up to his last name and be a worthy player for the Packers as a rookie.
The following are quick bites on what happened on Day 2 of training camp with comments from coach Mike McCarthy:
- Finley out with concussion: Starting tight end Jermichael Finley missed camp Friday due to a concussion. McCarthy said Finley will miss a couple days.
- Hargrove out: Defensive lineman Anthony Hargrove also missed practice Friday as he was out of town dealing with a personal issue. Hargrove is expected to be at practice Saturday.
- Green sits out: RB Alex Green didn’t practice Friday after practicing Thursday, but don’t worry. Coming off a torn ACL nine months ago, the Packers are being cautious early in camp to see how the knee responds the day after a practice. Green is expected to practice Saturday. McCarthy: “Alex Green has been cleared but we’re being smart with his reps."
- Williams showing up: With Andrew Quarless (knee) shelved with an injury, the backup TE position is up for grabs and second-year TE D.J. Williams has started camp impressively. The former Arkansas Razorback, who had two catches last season, has displayed good hands the first two days. McCarthy: “D.J. has had two very good practices. He’s stronger. He’s playing with much more balance and strength. He’s doing a lot better job of attacking the middle of the field.”
- Impressive Big Ten defensive linemen: Worthy and Mike Neal have looked good. Worthy, from Michigan State, and Neal, from Purdue, could help bolster a defensive line that needs help. McCarthy: “I think Jerel and Mike showed up in (Thursday’s) practice. You see the explosion. They add something to our group. I love his energy (Worthy). He jumps around and he’s excited. I think he’s going to be in position to make an impact for us.”
- Nelson’s role: WR Jordy Nelson led the Packers in catches, yards and touchdowns last season, so how much special teams does he play? In the past, Nelson returned punts and kickoffs as well as played on coverage units. Last year, though, when his offensive role expanded, Nelson didn’t return kicks or punts. McCarthy: “Jordy Nelson’s responsibility on special teams will come down to how the rest of the team unfolds. Jordy is a very skilled player in a number of our special team units. How much he plays will be determined by other players.”
- Young WRs make jump: Last season the Packers were able to keep WRs Tori Gurley and Diondre Borel the entire season and it may pay off this camp. Their improvement from 2011 is noticeable and could force the Packers to keep seven WRs. McCarthy: “Borel and Gurley have definitely grown from last year. Both have made big jumps there. The biggest thing I’m watching there is special teams. That group will come down to special teams and production in games.”
- Do the best 53 make team? You would think so, but McCarthy said it goes beyond the most talented players making it through the final roster cut. McCarthy: “The difference in the player making it isn’t the physical, it’s the mental. We’re not looking for the 53 most talented players, we’re looking for the best 53 players that fit.”
- Pads on Saturday: Camp is only two days old and truthfully nothing notable has happened in terms of who can do what because there has been no hitting. Saturday that changes, when the Packers practice in pads for the first time. This will be the first look at the new players with contact and it’ll be the first real test for the offensive and defensive lines, which quite frankly can’t show much when in shorts and jersey tops. They need the contact more than any other position. McCarthy: “There are mileposts and the first padded practice is one of them. Offensive linemen prefer it; easier on shoulders. It’ll give us the ability to get after more individual work.”
- What's up for the weekend? The Packers practice in pads at 8:15 a.m. Saturday and then have a day off Sunday.
Number of the Day
18.6 Yards per catch by Nelson last season ranked third in the NFL among WRs with at least 40 catches.
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