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Official Training Camp Thread 3

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by TOPHAT, Aug 13, 2007.

  1. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    BRETT'S PC: FRUSTRATIONS & PATIENCE

    http://packers.scout.com/2/668409.html

    Favre facing big challenge. Veteran quarterback trying, but struggling to mesh with young receivers.

    The challenge that Brett Favre and the offense faces is clear. It has to develop a much better chemistry between now and the start of the regular season, or else. Thus far in training camp there have been flashes of progress with the team’s offense, but lately, including four straight three-and-out series at Pittsburgh Saturday, the results have been less than promising. Favre said today that he walked off Heinz Field as frustrated “as I’ve ever been in the preseason. I just expect more from myself, but the offense in general. It wasn’t so much what they did, but what we did or didn’t do.” Fortunately for Favre and the Packers, the offense has about half of training camp to build some momentum heading into the season, but Favre will need as many snaps in practice as possible if the Packers are going to score points when the regular season begins.

    For now, the chemistry is far from just right, according to Favre, but there is still time for the veteran quarterback and his core of young receivers and running backs to get to know each other a little better. It began with this morning’s practice when Favre took the majority of the snaps with the offense. The coaching staff has been giving Favre the morning of two-a-days off, along with other veterans, in an effort to keep them fresh. But after a stinker of a showing in the preseason opener and a rough practice on Monday, Favre was under center this morning as the team practiced in the Don Hutson Center. “It’s an ongoing process,” said offensive coordinator Joe Philbin of the offense and Favre. “This is a practice when you’re 37 years old some guys can take off. I think him being here, he probably got 25 quality snaps today and I’d say 17 or 18 were passes. We’re cognizant of the fact that this is going to take him a little time for him to gel, and that’s why he’s continuing to work at it.”

    Favre says this offense is lightyears away the offenses of the mid-1990s when the team played in three straight NFC Championship Games and two Super Bowls. The Packers offense of 2007 currently has no established running back or fullback, one established wide receiver, a first-year starter in Donald Lee at tight end, and another veteran tight end in Bubba Franks, whose confidence has taken a beating in recent seasons. “Last year and this year, we’re constantly trying to find chemistry and constantly trying to find something to hang our hat on,” said Favre. “As a play-caller you’re calling stuff that you think will work, but will fit our guys and our style of play?” Favre lobbied for the Packers to trade for veteran wide receiver Randy Moss in the off-season, but it never happened. Favre says he has put that behind him, and publicly he has been nothing but supportive of general manager Ted Thompson and coach Mike McCarthy. However, it sure seems at times he is thinking about what could have been with Moss and Donald Driver in the fold, rather than Driver and a handful of unproven receivers.

    “They (Thompson and McCarthy) and you know as well as I do what we’re up against offensively, what we’re facing,” Favre said. “It’s a lot different now than it was five years ago, six years ago, and so on. It is what it is. We have to find and build chemistry every day and each week. Find what plays works and fit the guys that we have running them. “It makes it more difficult. You’d like to go into a season, like Indy is now and New England and even the Bears, like we were in years past. The Saints … I consider San Diego in that position. These guys have not only played in this league, but have played together, or know the game itself. We know what plays work. We know Indy is going to run the same plays, but it’s hard to stop them because they’ve been running them so long and so well. We were the same way. You knew I was going to throw a screen pass to Edgar Bennett, but you didn’t know when it was coming, but it worked. Right now, we’re trying to run some of those plays and one guy might be in this position, and one guy might be in that position, and another guy is in the wrong position. It’s frustrating for me, but I understand. It’s frustrating because I’ve been there. I’m having to anticipate, or as I said before, be a little apprehensive or reluctant. It’s hard to anticipate a throw down the field when I’m a little unsure if he’s going to break it off when I think he is. It’s hard to play that way, but that’s the way it is.

    “At some point, I have to play the game and I’ve tried to focus on that coming into this training camp. I focus only on what I do. In years past I have tried to coach everybody up on the fly. It’s hard enough to play my position when I focus on me. If I have to focus on everyone else, I can’t do that.” It’s almost as if Favre has to start thinking like a player in the early stages of his career and try to put himself on the same page. As training camp moves on and the practice schedule is trimmed, the challenge will be greater. Look for McCarthy to give Favre more playing time than normal in the next three preseason games in order for him to adjust to his receivers, and vice-versa. It is for that reason that the Packers came out throwing in their first two series at Pittsburgh. “Most of the guys haven’t experienced the success that we’ve had in the past, or what it takes,” said Favre. “Talent alone does not get you championships, chemistry does.”

    The Packers offense is far from hitting on the right chemistry. Until that happens, it could be rough sledding. It will be up to Favre and his young teammates to make it happen as quickly as possible. If at some point in the regular season it appears that Favre and the offense isn’t clicking, the Packers may turn to Aaron Rodgers. Until that happens, Favre will be working to conquer perhaps the biggest preseason challenge of his career.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    http://packers.scout.com/2/668733.html

    Staying in control key for Favre: Young receivers, Favre need to make best of each situation in camp.

    Preseason games were always a nuisance for Brett Favre. A rhythm was established. The offense was fortified in the spring and in sync by the summer. In 15 seasons, the passing game has ranked in the top ten 12 times under Favre. The exhibition season was nothing more than four games of verification. This year’s team needs a revolution. The talent is there. The 2007 receiving unit is better than some of Favre’s past corps, such as the late-90s trio of Freeman-Schroeder-Bradford. While raw talent isn’t an issue, chemistry is for the Packers offense. According to Favre, the offense has gelled at a sloth’s pace. “A lot has changed,” said a discouraged Favre at Tuesday’s press conference. “[In the past] you could go out and do things blindfolded. Whereas last year and this year, we’re constantly trying to find chemistry and constantly trying to find what we hang our hat on.”

    A decade ago, Favre could rely on Robert Brooks breaking open on a deep slant. He knew Mark Chmura would be free down the seam if Brooks and Antonio Freeman were blanketed. Checkdowns weren’t processed his mind, they just happened. Five years ago, Favre knew that in 2nd-and-long situations, a screen to Ahman Green get a chunk of those yards back. The defense knew all of these plays were coming too. But the offense’s synergy was so high, execution was inevitable. Favre had a set of go-to plays that never failed. But three weeks into the ’07 season, Favre still doesn’t trust all of his receivers. He admitted Tuesday that he is hesitant to throw the ball before receivers make a cut, in fear that they’ll butcher the route. Favre is so dependent on route adjustments that raw talent on the outside can work against the offense. This summer’s biggest camp surprise, James Jones, is the best example. “James is like Sterling, when he first came in,” Favre said. “He’s got great hands and he’s really confident with his hands. What he lacks in speed in quickness, he makes up for with strength…It’s the things that you really don’t see that he has to work on. He’s no different than anyone else. “A couple times he kept running when he should have sat out and he got away with it. But the next game he may not. If it’s a zone, he has to read it as a zone. Those are the types of things that here in preseason you get better at.”

    Favre’s reliance on his receiver’s recognizing different coverages leads to interception parties as his 47 picks the last two seasons attest. Yet, on-the-fly adjusting is what makes Favre great. (see: Andre Rison’s 54-yard touchdown against New England in Super Bowl XXXI). Now it’s his worst enemy. In 11 training camp practices, Favre has whipped the ball around carelessly in streaks, over-relying on his receivers making acute cuts in specific locations on certain defensive reads. His arm strength is as good as ever. But when he’s not on the same page as his wideouts, it’s useless. Through camp, Favre has had an alarming amount of picks and near-picks. Favre should build off of last season and play more conservatively. It will allow his receivers to assimilate into the offense smoother, and it will complement a strong defense. A top ten defense would allow him to play the field position game.

    Regardless, August 18 is a crucial step toward reaching continuity. The more live game looks Jones and Co. see the closer they’ll come to maximizing their potential. Physically, the receiving corps could be the best in the NFC North. Driver, Greg Jennings, Jones, and Ruvell Martin haven’t dropped anything, they’re in great physical shape, and they all go across the middle without reservations. Mentally, many are still learning, says Favre. To avoid lapses that result in game-changing plays, like Fred Smoot’s ‘pick six’ off Jenning’s wrong route, the offense needs to click on Saturday. Driver realizes this. “Once you earn Brett’s trust, it makes it easier for you to go out there and play because he’s going to throw it to you whenever you need it,” Driver said. “We have to execute [Saturday]. We didn’t execute at Pittsburgh. We had four series and we went three-and-out on all of them. We have to make sure we start fast and get a first down early because everything will roll after that.”

    Brett Favre can’t trade spots with Ted Thompson and wheel ‘n' deal for veteran pass-catchers. He can’t morph Brandon Jackson and Noah Herron into Dorsey Levens and Edgar Bennett, and reap the benefits of two 70-catch options out of the backfield. He can’t inject James Jones with a dose of Antonio Freeman’s awareness. He must re-build an offense from square one. That is the reality Favre must stomach. “I want to win now,” he said. “I hope everyone else does too. We’ve had a lot of success here in the past. As I look around the locker room, in meetings, or on the field with these guys, most of these guys didn’t experience the success we’ve had in the past or what it takes.” Favre didn’t sugarcoat his press conference like those excessively-energetic NFL Team Yearbooks do every summer. He realizes that time is running out. “Talent alone does not get you championships. Chemistry does ... We have to find it fast. Of all the years I’ve been playing, this year there are a lot of opportunities for guys you’ve never heard of to make a name for themselves. Who those guys will be, I have no idea.”

    Green Bay defense could become an elite unit in the NFC this year. Maybe that is what disheartens Favre the most. For the first time in a decade, he has a ‘D’ that could routinely get him back on the field. Only this time Favre may not be able to stay on it unless he harnesses his wild side. He should work within the offense and not expect young receivers to make complex on-field adjustments. Still, this exhibition game against Seattle will be a major step in Favre’s uneasy comfort level. The 17-year veteran faces his toughest task of his career: Cramming a five-year project into five weeks. Talent exists. Experience and go-to plays do not. It’s on Favre to make it happen - even if it means compensating his gunslinger mentality.
    ______________________________________________________________

    http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=647340

    The Drill: According to ... Brett Favre

    On Tuesday, Green Bay quarterback Brett Favre conducted his second press briefing of training camp. Here are selected excerpts:

    On offensive cohesion: "It's a lot different now than five years ago, six years ago, seven years ago. You'd like to go into a season like Indy is now and New England and even the Bears. The way we were in years past. I consider the Saints in that position. San Diego. You know Indy will run the same plays but it's hard to stop them because they've been running them so long and so well. We were the same way. I mean, you knew I was going to throw a screen pass to Edgar Bennett but you didn't know when it was coming. It's frustrating for me, but I understand. I'm having to maybe anticipate a little more. It's hard to anticipate a throw down the field when I'm a little unsure if he's going to break it off when I think he is. It's hard to play that way. Once again, that's the way it is."

    On the future: "I may play five more years. I think we're all assuming that's not the case. If this was a five-year project and this year is just the first step . . . but I want to win now. I hope everyone else does, too."

    On the winning equation: "Talent alone does not get you championships. Chemistry does. We have to find it fast."

    On his play: "I feel from a physical standpoint the throws I've made were on par with where I'd want them to be at this stage. I don't think I've thrown many in practice where I went, 'I was able to make that throw two years ago.' "

    On the wide receivers: "We have guys that are real good route runners. We don't have guys that will knock your socks off just as far as running. We really don't throw the ball downfield a lot."

    On James Jones: "He's done everything we would expect him to do. But if he's going to play for us he has to continue to get better. . . . A couple times maybe he kept running when he should have set it down but he got away with it. The next game he may not. If it's zone he's got to read it as zone. Up to this point I've been pleased with the type of player he is."

    On the offensive line: "There's a great mix of personality and talent. I hope they don't get the second-year blues or whatever you want to call it and continue to get better. They've got two great coaches that are not that far removed from playing that they can relate to. It all starts with them. That's the one place in our offense that you can point to and say, 'That's where they should be better.' Barring injury, it can really be as good as any in the league."

    On Aaron Rodgers: "I think he's done fine. I get along with Aaron great. I've had some good talks with him in the past. He has all the tools. By today's standards, he's not your big prototypical quarterback. He's not imposing when he walks into a room but he's got a great arm. He's got great ability to move around and make throws on the run. He's got the smarts to play. The bottom line is, when he gets his chance to play, how will he respond to the success as well as adversity? No one knows that. I assume when that time comes he'll be fine. I know it's difficult for him but I know he's handled it well. He's said all the right things. I know he wants to play. I would, too. He's done nothing but get better each and every time he's played."

    On records: "I think if I never play another down it's already written what people think of me. One way or the other. The opinions have already been formed. All this season will do is add something else. All the experts have me ranked wherever. That's perfectly OK. I don't need these records to move me up the rankings. That's not what I'm about. If I need these records to be thought of as a great player or to be remembered 20 years down the road, I didn't make that much of an impact on people when they came to watch us play. I would hope I'm remembered a lot more than records. I can't say it wouldn't be nice to break Dan Marino's records. He's pretty darn good. But I'd like to think I already left a pretty good legacy."
    ______________________________________________________________

    http://www.wrn.com/gestalt/go.cfm?objectid=6A5213CE-C91B-8701-126E23AC8AEC4774

    Favre could be in for a long year

    A couple years ago, Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre made the bold prediction, SuperBowl or bust. He hasn't heard the end of it yet. Yesterday, Favre was asked if it's playoffs or bust this season and he refused to go down that prediction road. He said "Let's try to beat Seattle this week and get better. Would I love for us to win and go to the playoffs? Absolutely. Do I think that can happen? I do. Do I think we could struggle and make it harder on ourselves? We can go one of two ways, or hang in the middle."

    Any success the Packers have this season will be greatly dependent on Favre and how well he plays. Packers head coach Mike McCarthy wants Favre to cut down on his interceptions, throw for a higher percentage and take less gambles. During a season in which Favre should move past a couple of Dan Marino's passing records, we'll see if Favre can show the patience to check down and take what the defense gives, sticking to McCarthy's conservative approach. Or, will Favre grow frustrated and start slinging the ball all over? How Favre handles his approach to the offense with a group of young inexperienced players will greatly determine if the Packers have any chance at the post-season.
     
  2. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    TC BLOG: HIGHLIGHTS

    http://packers.scout.com/a.z?s=61&p=2&c=668223

    Crosby takes lead

    If Monday's practice is any indication, Mason Crosby has grabbed the lead over Dave Rayner in the enteraining kicking battle.
    Punter Jon Ryan, who held for Rayner last season, was paired with Crosby for all five field goal attempts in the afternoon practice. Crosby made all seven attempts ( distances of 32, 39, 44, 46 and 53 yards) while Rayner's only miss was from 53 yards. The fact that Crosby was paired with Ryan, who will be the team's punter again this year, was somewhat telling. Rayner was paired with backup holder Aaron Rodgers. Coach Mike McCarthy said after practice that the kickers will switch off on holders, so that may be the case in Tuesday's practices, but we'll see. For now, Crosby has the advantage in this battle. He has made a few more kicks in practice and booted a 52-yarder through the uprights Saturday night.

    Offense struggles in late-game situations

    Either Green Bay's defense is that good, or the team's offense is that bad. On Monday, the first-team offense went nowhere fast in the 2-minute drill when Brett Favre's laser toward Greg Jennings was picked off high in the sky by safety Atari Bigby. Aaron Rodgers led the second-team offense 34 yards to the 26 before calling a timeout with 3 seconds left, allowing for Mason Crosby and Dave Rayner to attempt and make 44-yard field goals. The first and second team offenses lined up at the 5 yard line in a fourth-and-goal situation at the end of practice, but neither team could put the ball into the end zone. Favre's pass to James Jones was incomplete, and Rodgers' pass to Carlyle Holiday was intercepted by cornerback Jarrett Bush.

    Bubba Believer

    While some feel that veteran tight end Bubba Franks may be released by the Packers, I say don't bet on it. The Packers need Franks, and Franks showed in practice on Monday that he's not about to go down without a fight. Franks made an impressive, diving catch of a pass from Brett Favre for a long gain in a 7-on-7 drill in front of linebacker Tracy White. Franks has been catching the ball well in training camp, only to drop a pass on Saturday night. Still, look for the veteran to bounce back, like he did in practice Monday, and be a factor for the Packers this year.
     
  3. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    TUESDAY EVENING SESSION

    http://www.packersnews.com/includes/newspaper/blogs/insider/index.shtml

    Evening wrap-up

    The Packers began game-planning for Seattle tonight, but not before the starting offense struggled through another punchless 2-minute drill. The starters ran only four plays, and Brett Favre was 0-for-3 passing. Two of those throws -- including one on fourth-and-5 -- hit tight end Zac Alcorn in the hands, but he didn't catch either one. The other sailed over Greg Jennings' head. Favre finished 2-for-5 in competitive periods, while Aaron Rodgers was 2-for-2. All the completions came during the screens and deception period, which usually favors the offense. The final two-practice day is Thursday. Both sessions will focus on game-planning, meaning competitive periods will be few.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Lee's back hurting, too

    Cornerback Al Harris and middle linebacker Nick Barnett returned to practice tonight, but another tight back forced tight end Donald Lee to leave practice early. Coach Mike McCarthy said Lee first experienced tightness in the morning, when Barnett and Harris missed time because of similar ailments. Only Harris, who sat out the Family Night scrimmage and the preseason opener because of the same problem, previously missed time in camp because of injury. "We're just trying to find the happy medium between getting (Harris) ready to the play the game (and practicing), because we're into game prep, schedule mode," McCarthy said.
    ______________________________________________________________

    Rayner, Crosby perfect on field goals

    Kickers Dave Rayner and Mason Crosby each made 7 of 7 field goal attempts from distances of 25, 25, 29, 29, 31, 31 and 45 yards.

    No. 1 holder Jon Ryan was paired with Rayner, while backup holder Aaron Rodgers teamed up with Crosby.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Players scuffle during practice

    Tempers were flaring Tuesday night on Clarke Hinkle Field as a couple of skirmishes broke out in the middle of practice.

    Defensive end Jason Hunter was involved in the first shoving match with an offensive player who couldn't be identified in the middle of a large pack of players.

    A short time later, offensive lineman Allen Barbre and defensive tackle Johnny Jolly became embroiled in a shoving match and had to be separated by teammates.

    - Linebacker Nick Barnett and cornerback Al Harris returned to practice tonight after sitting out the morning workout with sore backs.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Packers hit bowling alley

    Coach Mike McCarthy revealed today that the team went bowling Monday night. The Packers were scheduled for meetings, but at the last minute McCarthy loaded the players on three buses and took off for Pro Bowl in Suamico. While the team dined on pizza, they also engaged in competitive bowling. Cornerback Jarrett Bush took home individual high honors by rolling a 212. McCarthy indicated the outing was a positive team-building event.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ryan outkicks Dougherty in punting duel

    Punting from his own 15 and slightly into the wind, Jon Ryan averaged 46.0 yards and 4.43 seconds of hang time on 6 punts. Ryan's longest boot was 55 yards.

    Free agent Ryan Dougherty averaged 40.0 yards and 4.22 seconds of hang time on 6 punts from the same field position. Dougherty had a long punt of 58 yards with 4.8 seconds of hang time, but he also shanked a 26-yarder after leaping for a high snap.
     
  4. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    TUESDAY SESSION REVIEWS

    http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=647445


    Tuesday camp report

    THUMBS UP

    If the Packers hadn't drafted Justin Harrell in the first round and returned four capable defensive tackles, rookie Daniel Muir would have been attracting a lot more attention. Muir, a free agent from Kent State, received a hefty $15,000 signing bonus after running 40 yards in 4.9 seconds in March and bench-pressing 225 pounds 37 times. In camp, Muir has gotten better and better. Against the run, he's hard to move. Against the pass, he has proved to be more than a typical slug. Whereas Harrell is almost exclusively a bull rusher, Muir flashes quickness, a spin move and a bull rush. In the last two days, Muir has won six of nine turns in the one-on-one drill. Without compromising the integrity of the defense, he has a knack for getting to the edge of blockers and applying pressure. A four-year starter for the Golden Flashes, he was fast enough to play end in '06. One could make the argument that Muir has performed as well if not better than Harrell in the first 2½ weeks of camp. Muir might have had a case of the jitters in Pittsburgh and didn't play as well as he was practicing. But with a better showing in the next few games, it's possible that he could displace one of the veterans and make the team.

    THUMBS DOWN

    Patrick Dendy, who replaced Ahmad Carroll as nickel back for the final 12 games, has been at left cornerback in the nickel defense since camp began and is scheduled to be there Saturday night against Seattle. The coaches like Dendy because of his conscientious approach, knowledge of the defense and understated approach. But cornerback also is one of the most competitive positions on the roster. Dendy is being challenged by four players, all of whom probably run faster than him, and he's been beat deep more than any of the top seven cornerbacks. The Steelers' Nate Washington appeared to grab a 38-yard bomb behind him but officials later ruled no catch. On Tuesday night, Shaun Bodiford torched Dendy deep, but a waffleball from Ingle Martin enabled Dendy to break it up. Dendy proved to be adequate in the role a year ago, but he could end up without a job come Sept. 2.

    INJURY REPORT

    TE Donald Lee made it through the morning practice with a stiff back but was unable to finish at night and left for treatment. G-C Tony Palmer (hamstring) and T Orrin Thompson (knee) sat out both practices. CB Al Harris left in the morning when his back condition flared up but returned for the night session.

    ODDS AND ENDS

    Coach Mike McCarthy said he was committed to starting Brett Favre against Seattle and Jacksonville. Favre's performance in those two games will determine how much, if at all, he is used at Tennessee, according to McCarthy. The plan is for Favre to play 25 to 30 snaps against the Seahawks.

    Ryan Pickett's wife gave birth to a boy Friday night. Pickett caught a flight to Pittsburgh Saturday morning and didn't arrive at the hotel until 12:30 p.m. It was Pickett's bull rush on the third play of the game that prevented Ben Roethlisberger from stepping up on the first of Cullen Jenkins' two sacks.

    Bubba Franks made one of his few catches in the deep middle, adjusting nicely to a throw from Favre for about 25 yards. The Packers charged Franks with a drop in the second quarter Saturday night on a 15-yard pass from Aaron Rodgers. It appeared as if Franks, who suffered a scratched cornea July 31, didn't see the ball until far too late.

    McCarthy devoted almost all of the team portion of the night practice to schemes employed by the Seahawks. He was in good spirits after an efficient practice ended at 9 p.m., 16 minutes ahead of schedule.

    Dave Rayner and Mason Crosby each was perfect on seven field-goal attempts.

    SCHEDULE WEDNESDAY

    No practice. The last day of camp with two practices will be Thursday (8:45 a.m., 6:30 p.m.).
     
  5. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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  6. Pack93z

    Pack93z You retired too? .... Not me. I'm in my prime

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    I hope this isn't the start of a "get me the damn ball" type of issue with the Packers.

    Jennings getting frustrated...

    Packers: Frustration for Jennings
    By JASON WILDE

    GREEN BAY — For a guy who was the hit of training camp as a rookie last year, Greg Jennings has been awfully quiet during the first two weeks of camp this year.

    According to the Green Bay Packers' No. 2 receiver, though — as well as his position coach, Jimmy Robinson — Jennings' lack of production in practice is tied to where he's lining up in the offense.

    "It's a little frustrating," said Jennings, who did not catch a pass in Saturday's preseason opener at Pittsburgh, while rookie James Jones led the team with six catches for 58 yards. "I'm not a complainer, but it begins to make me look like I'm not even out there doing anything."

    The problem is this: In the Packers' base offense, Donald Driver lines up on the strong side (with the tight end) at the "Z," or flanker, spot.

    Jennings lines up at "X," or split end. But when they go to three receivers, Driver moves to the "Zebra" spot, which is in the slot, and Jones moves to "Z."

    Both of them are then on the strong side, while Jennings is by himself on the back side at "X."

    Last year, when the Packers went to three receivers, Jennings moved to "Z" and the third receiver came in at "X."

    "I've kind of wanted to keep James at one spot, so I haven't moved Greg around as much. Last year, Greg was all over the place and it gave him more opportunity," Robinson said. "I can see he feels like the lonesome man a little bit right now."

    As Robinson promised following the morning practice, Jennings spent most of Tuesday night's session at the "Z" spot in three-receiver sets.

    Safety dance

    Secondary coach Kurt Schottenheimer said veteran Marquand Manuel responded "just the way I thought he would" to the coaches inserting Atari Bigby into the No. 1 defense in Manuel's place in practice Monday.

    Manuel was back with the No. 1 unit Tuesday, although Charlie Peprah and Tyrone Culver did get one or two snaps with the 1s in the morning.

    "He took it as another challenge," Schottenheimer said. "He's not going to let something like that be a distraction. As I told him, we want to see how different combinations communicate out there. We know Nick (Collins) is going to be out there, but there's competition (at the other safety spot)."

    Coach Mike McCarthy said Manuel, who struggled in his first season in Green Bay last year, "has played as good of football (as he has) since he's been here.

    "He's one of our better communicators. He does a really good job in the back end. He's had a really good camp. We're just trying to create as much competition across the board. Atari being one of them, and Charlie and Culver. We're trying to find out now. We don't want to wait until the third or fourth week of the season."
     
  7. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    http://packers.scout.com/2/668584.html

    The Word: Training Camp Day 18

    Last season A.J. Hawk played 13 games before snatching an interception.
    With an uncluttered mind and a license to roam, Hawk is shaping into more of a playmaker this summer - not just a tackler. Through three weeks of training camp, no player has wreaked more havoc than Hawk in the Packers' training camp. During Tuesday morning's practice, on a short pass by Brett Favre across the middle, Hawk crept toward the line, tipped the ball and hung on for an interception. Multiple times during the evening practice he chased down Brandon Jackson and Corey White from the weak side to make the tackle. Hawk’s improved reaction speed is a direct result of Bob Sanders’ system. The defensive coordinator is molding a unit that puts Hawk in advantageous situations. Adjacent to Nick Barnett, Hawk can take more chances, too.

    “We think the coaching staff is putting us in positions to make plays and we can do it,” Hawk said. “Being familiar with every guy on this defense helps. Our communication is great right now. In the type of defense we play, communication is huge. We’re talking all the time to make sure that everybody knows what’s going on.” Last season the Packers’ defense was Gaylord Focker-like - a terrifying amount of ups and downs with a taste of success at the end. After surrendering at least 34 points in three straight games, the unit finished on a rampage. Four straight wins. Three touchdowns allowed. No Robert De Niro in sight. As the centerpiece of the defense, Hawk realizes the hype and expectations surrounding the unit this season. “Our potential is huge,” he said. “We just have to make sure we live up to it.”

    Offensive Play of the Day

    If there is one rule of thumb to the zone-blocking scheme, it’s to ‘keep it inside.’ Mike McCarthy noted that Brandon Jackson’s early troubles at Pittsburgh reflected his tendency to take runs outside. The entire scheme is dependent on the back patiently waiting a split-second for a lane to form between the tackles. It’s natural to jump the gun and ride the play outside, which Jackson did a handful of times last Saturday. On Tuesday, Jackson took baby steps toward breaking this habit. During an 11-on-11 segment, Jackson took a handoff to the left (selling the play in that direction) and used his peripheral vision to check his rushing lane. As the offensive line washed down the defensive line, Jackson cut inside Mark Tauscher’s left hip for a 10-yard gain. Instincts can be taught, as Jackson is slowly proving.

    Defensive Play of the Day

    The coaching staff has stuck with cornerback Patrick Dendy as the team’s No. 3 cornerback throughout camp. One supremely athletic individual effort on Tuesday night justified this confidence. Quarterback Paul Thompson took a five-step drop and fired a 30-yard go-route to Shaun Bodiford, who had a step on Dendy. But as the ball dropped in Bodiford’s lap, Dendy quickly closed in and punched it out for an incompletion.

    Stock is Rising

    Saturday night against Seattle, McCarthy plans on putting Paul Thompson to the test for a full fourth quarter of reps. Tuesday night, he gave him a preview, as the ex-Sooner received extensive 11-on-11 work. After starting with two poor throws, Thompson got hot. On his third pass, he zipped a 10-yard in to Carlton Brewster with Antonio Malone guarding the receiver closely. The next play, Thompson completed the exact same pass to James Jones on the other side, in stride again. Thompson wasn’t perfect. A couple of his throws in the drill were high, but his arm strength is definitely a cut above. After battling the No. 2 defense for awhile, McCarthy threw the No. 1 ‘D’ at Thompson’s third team. And Thompson threaded the needle to James Jones. One more pat of the ball and the pass would have easily been picked off by Marquand Manuel. Thompson is adapting to the speed of the pro game....

    Stock is Falling

    Time is ticking for DeShawn Wynn. The seventh round pick couldn’t have asked for a better scenario. He entered camp with five competitors. Two are on the shelf. One is an undrafted free agent pickup. The other two have done little to stand out. Wynn could have been the darkhorse that won the running back derby. Unfortunately injuries have ravaged his first NFL training camp. Wynn missed the beginning of camp with a stomach virus, returned briefly, then suffered a strained quadriceps last week and has yet to return....
     
  8. Pack93z

    Pack93z You retired too? .... Not me. I'm in my prime

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    A little update on Cliffy ... hopefully the guy can enjoy a relative pain-free year for a change.

    So far so good

    Packers: Clifton plays through the pain
    By JASON WILDE 608-252-6176
    jwilde@madison.com
    GREEN BAY — Mike McCarthy was worried. Remembering what Chad Clifton had been through last season just to be able to play on Sundays, the Green Bay Packers' coach was getting a distinct here-we-go-again vibe from his franchise left tackle.

    It was early last week, and Clifton's troublesome knees were causing him problems — again. Despite McCarthy's decision to limit Clifton to one practice a day — even on days when two sessions were scheduled — Clifton hobbled off Clarke Hinkle Field on Aug. 6 in noticeable discomfort. He missed both practices on Aug. 7, had Aug. 8 off as part of McCarthy's Wednesdays-off rest-and-recovery program, then sat out last Thursday morning's practice as well.

    "I thought we were falling into the realm we were in last year," McCarthy admitted.

    Last year was brutal for the 31-year-old Clifton. The cumulative effect of offseason surgeries — he had arthroscopic surgery on both knees and his elbow before the 2006 season, his third straight offseason of having at least one surgery — was clearly taking its toll, and the prevailing thought was that his 6-foot-5, 320-pound body was betraying him.

    While he didn't miss a game because of his knees — he did miss the Oct. 22 game at Miami because of food poisoning — he spent two hours a day doing therapy and rehabilitation to prepare his body to practice and play. Early in training camp, the coaches shut him down for a week because of swelling in both knees.

    But he survived the season, then enjoyed the healthiest offseason he's had since Warren Sapp's unforgettable blindside hit in 2002 caused a career-threatening hip injury. Clifton participated in both the mandatory minicamp and the organized team activity practices — something he couldn't do the previous two offseasons — and reported to camp in perfect health.

    Which is what made last week's setback all the more disconcerting — and the fact that Clifton returned to practice last Thursday night and played the best of any of the first-string linemen in the preseason opener at Pittsburgh all the more reassuring.

    "Personally, I don't think I was overly shocked that that happened," offensive coordinator Joe Philbin, Clifton's position coach last season, said of the missed practice time. "It's probably not a bad idea to keep him fresh. We felt like, out of all the linemen, he played the best out of anybody on Saturday night. For him, it was probably a wise thing to do."

    'So far, so good'

    Clifton said the flare-up wasn't nearly as bad as the one he experienced in camp a year ago, and he expects his training-room time to be limited this year.

    "I'm sure they were concerned, but I'm feeling as good as I've felt in three years. So far, so good," said Clifton, who's entering his eighth NFL season, having started 95 of a possible 112 games since moving into the starting lineup midway through his rookie season in 2000. "I'm still doing a lot of rehab exercises, just preventative stuff, just to strengthen the quad(riceps) and the hip, just to keep everything strong around the knees.

    "You never want to have the problems I was having last year, especially in training camp. That first week, it really flared up on me. I thought, 'This is going to be a battle this year,"' Clifton said. "But going into week 3, week 4 (of the regular season) it really started coming around."

    Indeed, Clifton played poorly in the regular-season opener against Chicago, allowing one sack, two quarterback hurries and two tackles to rookie defensive end Mark Anderson in a 26-0 loss. But he played better the next week against New Orleans, and it wasn't until the Miami game that the Packers had a problem at left tackle.

    It was then that the team got a glimpse of life without Clifton, as then-rookie guard Daryn Colledge slid over to tackle and gave up a pair of sacks to defensive end Jason Taylor, who forced Brett Favre to fumble both times.

    Backup plan

    Colledge remains Clifton's primary backup, Philbin said, although the team has worked Orrin Thompson, Junius Coston and Adam Stenavich at the position in camp. None of the four is as dominant a pass-blocker as Clifton, so it's clear the Packers desperately need Clifton in the lineup, which makes him staying healthy priority No. 1.

    "I think he looks good. He definitely appears quicker than he was at this point last year," Philbin said. "Certainly health-wise he's ahead of where he was a year ago and I think he's moving well."

    For his part, Clifton would like to play 12 years in the NFL. The six-year contract extension worth $34.2 million he signed before the 2004 season runs through 2009, which would mark 10 years for him. He'd also like to be acknowledged as one of the top left tackles in the league, but he's not craving that validation.

    "Who knows, man. My ultimate goal is to win a Super Bowl, and whatever comes after that is fine," Clifton said. "I'm not sitting around at the house or at practice hoping I make the Pro Bowl. I know I'm a good player and I know what I've done, and that's enough for me.

    "With all the injuries I've been through, hopefully this will be a great year for me."
     
  9. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    PACKERSNEWS REVIEWS

    http://www.packersnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070815/PKR01/708150614/1989

    Insider: Clifton the model of consistency

    Thumbs up

    Every offensive line prospect who comes into training camp from here on out should be required to watch film of Chad Clifton in the one-on-one pass blocking drill. What each one will see is pure dominance. The next time a defensive lineman beats Clifton in the spirited camp drill will be the first of this camp. The starting left tackle has been the model of consistency during one-on-ones throughout training camp. The coaches don't put the cagey veteran through that rigorous drill every day because they know resting his aging body is important, but they do it enough for Clifton to remind everyone that he's the team's premier pass blocker. At 31 years old and entering his eighth NFL season, Clifton remains a franchise left tackle. By unofficial count, he has taken eight reps during the one-on-one drill so far in 2007, and he's won every time — most with ease. Late in Tuesday's night practice, Clifton again showed who's the boss. He easily pushed back pass-rush specialist Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila. It was the sixth straight time during this camp Clifton has edged KGB during the drill. Cullen Jenkins and Larry Birdine also had turns against Clifton earlier in camp and met the same fate.

    Thumbs down

    For a guy who supposedly has the best hands of the tight end group, at least according to some of the coaches, Zac Alcorn hasn't been showing it of late. A day after he dropped at least two passes, the second-year pro who once seemed like a good bet to make the team showed hands of stone during Tuesday's night practice, dropping at least two passes and missing another. Two of his drops came during a four-play stretch and helped stall a 2-minute drive for the No. 1 offense. Trailing 14-10 with 1:31 to play, the No. 1 offense started at its 40-yard line. The first play was a short pass from Brett Favre to Alcorn, who couldn't handle it. Then on fourth-and-5 at the 45, Favre fired a strike that would have been a first down had it not gone through Alcorn's hands and was almost intercepted by safety Marquand Manuel. Then, during a 7-on-7 period, Favre whizzed a pass that went right past Alcorn, who never saw it coming. Alcorn has faded at the wrong time. The coaches desperately need a third tight end to emerge behind Donald Lee and Bubba Franks.

    Did you notice?

    Linebacker A.J. Hawk made two big plays during the morning practice, and they came on consecutive snaps. One play after tipping a pass that was intended for rookie receiver James Jones, he batted another Favre pass into the air and intercepted it.

    Defensive tackle Corey Williams also picked off Favre in the morning practice. He showed quick reactions when he snatched away a short dump-off pass intended for running back Brandon Jackson.

    Rookie linebacker Desmond Bishop got his most extensive work to date with the No. 1 defense in the morning, when starter Nick Barnett (back) and Abdul Hodge (knee) were held out. Both returned for the night practice.

    Cornerback Will Blackmon got the first crack at the punt return duties during the night practice and promptly muffed his first attempt. Jones also bobbled a punt during the same period.

    Incumbent Jon Ryan averaged 46.0 yards and 4.43 seconds of hang time during the same drill.
    ____________________________________________________________

    http://www.packersnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070815/PKR01/708150571/1989

    Notebook: Winds of change don't deter Collins

    If the prospect of playing alongside a third strong safety in three seasons worries free safety Nick Collins, he isn't letting on. "It don't faze me," Collins said Tuesday, a day after Atari Bigby replaced incumbent Marquand Manuel for the first time in practice. "Atari now being here for three years, so everybody, whoever's the other d-back, I'm comfortable with." Manuel, who replaced Mark Roman last season, took all the work alongside Collins in practice Tuesday morning. But during game-planning periods in the night session, Bigby replaced Manuel for about a half-dozen plays and played alongside Collins and Manuel in the "Niner" (3-2 dime) package. Rookie Aaron Rouse also played a snap alongside Collins in an 11-on-11 period.

    Though coach Mike McCarthy said Monday he's comfortable with limiting Collins' snaps throughout the preseason — he played only one series in last week's win at Pittsburgh — Collins might see more action in Saturday's exhibition against Seattle as the team experiments with different combinations. "When they're in competition, you want to get them exposure with the guy who, if he wins the job, who he may be playing with," secondary coach Kurt Schottenheimer said. "We're going into game two, and we just have to keep getting a lot more information about the guys."

    Miree getting pushed?

    Fullback Brandon Miree might be wise to test his injured shoulder sooner than later. Asked Tuesday whether Miree's absence in the preseason opener limited the running game, offensive coordinator Joe Philbin noted the Packers "don't really have an established starting fullback." Miree hasn't participated in contact portions of practice since early last week. He also missed time early in camp with a sore Achilles' tendon and battled injuries throughout last season, his first in Green Bay. The Packers pursued an upgrade in free agency after they released veteran William Henderson, but Terrelle Smith and Justin Griffith signed elsewhere. The only other fullbacks on the roster — Korey Hall, who started Saturday, Ryan Powdrell and Corey White — are rookies, and none of them played much fullback in college. Still, there's no guarantee Miree's roster spot is safe, especially if alternatives arise after cuts begin Aug. 28. The Packers signed Miree to the practice squad after the Denver Broncos cut him last September, then waived Vonta Leach eight days later. If Miree doesn't practice Thursday night, he almost certainly will sit out a second consecutive exhibition game Saturday.

    Call a chiropractor

    Cornerback Al Harris, middle linebacker Nick Barnett and tight end Donald Lee experienced tightness in his back Tuesday morning. Barnett sat out the entire morning session, and Lee left the night practice early and did not return. In the locker room after the morning practice, Barnett said he wasn't concerned about his injury. "It's been tight for a week now, so (team trainers) decided to give it a rest for a little," Barnett said. "I don't think it's that big of a deal."

    Odds and ends

    McCarthy half-jokingly blamed the back trouble on the team's surprise bowling trip Monday night to Pro Bowl in Suamico. CB Jarrett Bush bowled a 212 on Monday night to lead all players.

    Playing time for starters, including QB Brett Favre, in Saturday's game probably won't be decided until Thursday. However, McCarthy said he plans to play rookie QB Paul Thompson in the fourth quarter. … McCarthy said the off day should provide needed rest for QB Brett Favre's sore hamstrings.

    Shaun Bodiford and David Clowney will reprise their roles as starting kick returners Saturday, special teams coordinator Mike Stock said. Will Blackmon will replace Bodiford as the No. 1 punt returner, with Bodiford getting the second rep. Blackmon and rookie Ryan Powdrell will get the second look on kick returns.

    While Stock was pleased with Jon Ryan's performance at Pittsburgh, he said the second-year punter's footwork wasn't right on his initial punt — a 35-yard shank to the left with 3.3 seconds of hang time. It was Ryan's first game since switching to a two-step approach. He rebounded to finish with a 46.8-yard average, with a long of 56.

    OL Junius Coston filled Chad Clifton's spot at left tackle in the morning practice. But for the second straight day, Coston was sent off after a false start. He also looked helpless against one Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila speed rush.
     
  10. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=647420

    Notes:

    Blackmon in line to succeed Woodson on returns


    After his performance Saturday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers, backup cornerback Will Blackmon has put himself in prime position to be the Green Bay Packers' punt returner this season.

    Playing from behind: The struggles of the No. 1 offense Saturday against the Steelers surprised the coaching staff because they prepared the unit for Pittsburgh's 3-4 defense and had been practicing at a pretty solid pace. But in four series, the Packers managed just 13 plays (including one penalty), and it was almost impossible for the coaches to make any assessments because of all the things that went wrong. "To give anybody an honest evaluation is hard to do because it wasn't a pretty performance," offensive coordinator Joe Philbin said. "That was across the board. I don't know that anybody functioned well in those 13 plays. We had everything. It was evenly distributed." As a result of the performance, there's a chance the coaches will leave the No. 1 offense on the field longer against the Seahawks so that it can start to develop some chemistry. Philbin wouldn't commit to how long quarterback Brett Favre and the offense would be on the field, but he admitted that a longer look might be necessary. "We have to get a rhythm going," Philbin said. "We had no tempo, no rhythm, we had no production. I don't know how Mike (McCarthy) wants to play this one, but we have to get it going."
     
  11. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    [align=center]Todays Training Camp Information

    • 8:45 a.m. - shells
    • 6:30 p.m. - full pads
    [/align]
     
  12. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    THURSDAY MORNING SESSION

    http://www.packersnews.com/includes/newspaper/blogs/insider/index.shtml

    It's a quiet morning at practice. This is the final day for two-a-day training camp practice, and maybe it's just as well, as far as the railbirds are concerned. The Packers, who were dressed in shorts this morning, engaged primarily in walkthroughs, stretching and light position drills for the first 90 minutes before the offense and defense finally squared off in a competitive team drills. Once that started, two veterans stood out.

    Wide receiver Donald Driver made a leaping catch of a Brett Favre pass over the middle with cornerback Jarrett Bush in coverage. Cornerback Charles Woodson intercepted a Paul Thompson pass intended for wide receiver Carlton Brewster.
     
  13. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    http://www.packersnews.com/includes/newspaper/blogs/insider/index.shtml

    Starters will go 25-30 plays vs. Seahawks

    The Packers' starters on offense and defense will play 25 to 30 snaps in Saturday night's preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field, coach Mike McCarthy said after practice this morning. Some players who have battled injuries, including cornerback Al Harris, could play less. Still others won't play at all. Fullback Brandon Miree and rookie running back DeShawn Wynn are expected to sit out again. Wynn has a quadriceps injury and Miree has a shoulder stinger. Neither has practiced in more than two weeks and neither is expected to return before next week, McCarthy said. Their absence, and that of running backs Vernand Morency and P.J. Pope, will leave the Packers with just a combined five running backs and fullbacks for the second consecutive week. Morency and Pope continue to rehabilitate knee injuries. Rookie running back Brandon Jackson likely will start against the Seahawks, and McCarthy said the coaching staff would like him to carry the ball at least 15 times. Fellow rookie Korey Hall will start at fullback for the second straight game. Coaches were scheduled to meet this afternoon to discuss playing time
     
  14. all about da packers

    all about da packers Cheesehead

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    It seems like Brandon Miree has been injured most of TC with a stinger here, a stinger there.

    This makes me worry about our FB position. Seems like Miree is injury prone.
     
  15. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    MONDAY & TUESDAY CAMP SESSIONS: GOOD REVIEW

    http://www.mytvisonfire.com/packersnation/?p=2293

    PACKER FAN ATTENDED MONDAY & TUESDAY CAMPS; REPORT GIVES INFO ABOUT ROSTER BATTLE QUESTIONS:

    Quarterbacks:

    Brett seemed to still struggle leading the 1st team offense down the field even though he looked better then he did against the Steelers. Rodgers continued to play well. Most of his throws were on target. He didn’t look quite as impressive as he did against Pittsburgh though. Ingle Martin and Paul Thompson both suffered with accuracy problems.

    Running Backs:

    Brandon Jackson ran pretty well (a little better than against Pittsburgh). Two things I did like was that he didn’t drop a single pass in both practices and he seems to have improved his blocking a little (he has struggled most of camp with his blocking). Noah Herron seemed pretty good but I still don’t think he will be anything more than a #3 RB. Corey White seemed to pretty much play RB even though he is listed as a FB. He didn’t look bad but he was also nothing special. He is a great guy though because he seemed to sign something for everyone who wanted an autograph. Vernand Morency and DeShawn Wynn were hurt and didn’t play.

    Full Backs:

    I am not sure if Miree practiced or not. Korey Hall was the starter for the most part. He didn’t do much but I can see a future for him at FB. He seems to catch the ball well and his blocking appears to be improving. Ryan Powdrell did nothing noticeable at all.

    Wide Receiver:

    Donald Driver played well like usual. He did drop at least one pass though. He seemed to get open quite a bit but it seemed like Brett was trying hard to get some of the other receivers involved. This is a good thing because Brett might not just throw to Driver on every play. Greg Jennings pretty much did his job. He really made no mistakes but he also didn’t make any big plays. James Jones stepped up once again. I am regretting ever insulting this pick. Jones is going to be something special. I would be shocked if he doesn’t become a pro bowler several times during his career. I don’t think Jones can possibly drop a pass. Another plus, it seems like he is another charismatic type receiver like Donald Driver. (Autograph seekers should also be happy because he signs quite a few autographs.) Carlyle Holliday really helped his chances of making the team. He made several deep ball catches and I don’t think he dropped any passes. If Holliday keeps this up he probably will get the #4 receiver spot. Ruvell Martin made some nice catches but none of them really stood out. Robert Ferguson really didn’t help himself. I would be shocked if he made the team. At this point I think the only way he would make the team is if several of our receivers would get hurt. David Clowney really surprised me. So far in camp he really hasn’t done much. On Monday and Tuesday I think he played very well. I say flashes of something special. Clowney looks like a deep ball threat. He caught several deep balls and showed he could take any reception to the end zone. At this point he is still really raw though. I am not sure he will make the team but if he doesn’t I hope we can sneak him on the practice squad. He showed flashes of being a great deep ball threat. Hopefully he can continue to improve. Shaun Bodiford was average. He caught all his passes but really didn’t show much as a receiver. He did seem better as a returner than he was against Pittsburgh though. Chris Francies made some nice catches but he didn’t show me enough to make me think he might make the team. Calvin Russell was just plain terrible. He dropped several passes. Don’t be surprised if he is in the first cut downs. Carlton Brewster really showed nothing as well. Should be part of the first cut downs.

    Tight Ends:

    Donald Lee was hurt and only got a few reps. Really showed nothing good or bad. Bubba Franks actually looked pretty good. He made several good catches and appeared to do well blocking. Don’t get excited though. I don’t think he will rebound from last season. Zac Alcorn did a good job catching the ball but it seemed like he had trouble getting open. He is also not that great of blocker. Clark Harris has a slim chance of making the team. He had several drops and seemed to have trouble blocking. At this point I don’t think he has a chance to make the team.

    Offensive Line:

    The starting offensive line appeared to hold their own quite well. In the individual blocking drills the backup offensive lines also seemed to do well against the defensive line.

    Defensive Ends:

    Aaron Kampman was pretty much Aaron Kampman. He did his job and made no mistakes. Cullen Jenkins continued to shine. At this point I would be shocked if this is not his breakout season. KGB seemed to do quite well pass rushing. I think he will do well as a pass rushing specialist. He still struggles defending the run though. Michael Montgomery, DeVon Hicks, and Larry Birdine really didn’t make any mistakes but also didn’t do much as well. Jason Hunter also pretty much only got into a fight and that was it.

    Defensive Tackle:

    If practice is any indication, pretty much every defensive tackle on the team will get time to play with the starters. Ryan Pickett seemed to do well against the run and it seemed like he wasn’t playing on passing downs. Corey Williams looked pretty well but didn’t make any stand out plays. Colin Cole got a surprising amount of playing time with the starters. Nothing bad or great that I could see. Justin Harrell seems like he could be something special. Harrell seemed to easily be able to push his offensive lineman back towards the QB. This should really help the run game. One thing he needs to work on though is getting past the offensive lineman that is blocking him. He does a good job pushing them but he needs to break away from the lineman if he wants to be a great player. Johnny Jolly and Daniel Muir didn’t really do anything noticeable.

    Linebackers:

    Nick Barnett, AJ Hawk, and Brady Poppinga all looked ready for the season. I am expecting great things out of them. I want at least one Pro Bowler from the LBs this year. I didn’t get to see a lot of linebacker play so I really didn’t notice anything from Spencer Havner, Juwan Simpson, Abdul Hodge, Desmond Bishop, Tim Goodwell, or Carl-Johan Bjork.

    Cornerbacks:

    Al Harris continued to blanket cover his receiver. Charles Woodson was knocking down or intercepting any pass that seemed to come even close to him. If he continues to play like this he will be a turnover machine and will make the Pro Bowl. Jarret Bush also looked really good. It looked like he only blew one coverage. He also had (I think) two interceptions and one would have been returned for a touchdown. Will Blackmon continues to make big plays but also makes some mistakes. Blackmon also looks like the best returner on the team. Patrick Dendy really didn’t do anything noticeable. Frank Walker looked good in coverage but didn’t really make any plays. Tramon Williams and Antonio Malone didn’t really do anything noticeable.

    Safeties:

    Nick Collins lined up with Marquand Manuel, Atari Bigby, and Aaron Rouse as the other starter. Nick Collins seems primed to have a big season. Marquand Manuel really didn’t stand out in any way. Atari Bigby had some really good practices. He made several good plays including intercepting two passes. I hope Bigby can play on the field like he does on the practice field. If he can I think he might win the starting job yet. Aaron Rouse didn’t really make any plays but I can see that he has the tools to be a very successful safety in the NFL. Marviel Underwood appeared to be still trying to recover from last year’s injury. At this point I am starting to worry that he won’t make the team. Alvin Nnabuife, Tyrone Cuvler, and Charlie Peprah really didn’t do much.

    Kickers:

    Dave Rayner kicked the ball well but I think he missed one while Mason Crosby missed none. Dave Rayner appears to kick the ball higher that Mason Crosby does. Crosby puts more authority into his kicks though and seems to kick them farther. At this point I want Crosby to win the kicking battle.

    Punters:

    Even though there is two punters you can tell there is no competition. The job has already been given to Jon Ryan. Dougherty got few opportunities to kick and didn’t show anything. Ryan looked good for the most part.
     
  16. all about da packers

    all about da packers Cheesehead

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    Awesome read tophat, thanks. :)
     
  17. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    .




    :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
     
  18. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    http://www.packersnews.com/includes/newspaper/blogs/insider/index.shtml

    Packers finished with receiver Ferguson

    Robert Ferguson's career as a Green Bay Packer is over. Coach Mike McCarthy said after practice tonight the team is talking with several teams about a possible trade, but even if one is not worked out, Ferguson will not play for the Packers again. "We've decided to go in another direction," McCarthy said. McCarthy said he met with Ferguson about 5 p.m. to inform him of his decision.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Barbre strong in one-on-one drills

    Rookie offensive lineman Allen Barbre was impressive in the one-on-one pass-rushing drills tonight. Barbre won all three of his reps, including one in which he lined up at left tackle, moved his feet well and stopped defensive end Larry Birdine. Barbre went back to his normal position of left guard and won reps against rookie first-round draft pick Justin Harrell and Daniel Muir. Harrell was one-for-three in his reps. Besides losing to Barbre, he also lost against Pat Murray, but he did manage to beat C.J. Blomvall. Aaron Kampman won a battle against starting right tackle Mark Tauscher. Kampman got around Tauscher cleanly.

    During a team drill, Frank Walker intercepted an Ingle Martin pass intended for Chris Francies. Marviel Underwood picked off Paul Thompson on a deep pass intended for Carlton Brewster.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Receivers get case of the drops

    Some highlights and lowlights from the 7-on-7 drills at tonight's practice:

    - Dropped passes became contagious for a brief period of time. Shaun Bodiford had what appeared to be back-to-back drops, although he seemed to be arguing that the second incomplete pass in the end zone was tipped by a defender. Rookie David Clowney had a pass hit him in the chest, which he dropped. Carlyle Holiday also got in on the act with a dropped pass.

    - On the bright side, cornerback Al Harris did a nice job of breaking up a deep ball intended for Calvin Russell. Harris had blanket coverage on the play.

    - Running back Brandon Jackson made a nice leaping grab out of the backfield of a slightly overthrown Brett Favre pass.

    - Tight end Joe Werner made a nice running hands catch of a low pass.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Favre connects on two 2-point plays

    The Packers offense directed by Brett Favre was successful on two of three attempts on 2-point conversion plays. Favre completed passes in the end zone to Carlyle Holiday and Donald Driver, both at the expense of cornerback Jarrett Bush. Another Favre pass intended for Driver fell incomplete when the receiver didn't look back for the ball. When third-string quarterback Ingle Martin stepped in, he directed the offense to successful conversions on 1 of 2 plays with a pass into the end zone to Noah Herron.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Favre drive stalls against No. 1 defense

    In the day's first competitive period, quarterback Brett Favre drove the starting offense into the red zone against the No. 1 defense, but the drive stalled with back-to-back incompletions broken up respectively by Nick Collins and Al Harris. The drive's biggest play was a long pass covering about 35 yards down the left sideline to Greg Jennings. Harris fell down on the play. Not practicing tonight are offensive linemen Tony Palmer and Travis Leffew, defensive end DeVon Hicks, fullback Brandon Miree, running backs Vernand Morency, DeShawn Wynn and P.J. Pope and receiver Robert Ferguson. Pope, who is recovering from knee surgery, and Ferguson are not in attendance. The reason for Ferguson's absence was not immediately clear.
     
  19. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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  20. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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  21. Tiger

    Tiger Cheesehead

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    good to see Blackman has kept the Mini 'Fro this year.
     
  22. TOPHAT

    TOPHAT Cheesehead

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    http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=648468

    THUMBS UP

    A year ago, free agent Ruvell Martin entered training camp unofficially ranked seventh among wide receivers. Then he beat out Rod Gardner, Cory Rodgers and Marc Boerigter to make the team. This summer, Martin looked like No. 6. Now he's no worse than No. 5 and probably No. 4 with the expected trade or release of Robert Ferguson. Martin, a free agent from Saginaw Valley State, keeps getting better and better.

    THUMBS DOWN

    Incumbent Dave Rayner stubbed his toe badly Thursday night, missing twice inside 40 yards. In his three-week duel with rookie Mason Crosby, it was perhaps the first time that one of the competitors blinked. After both men hit from 28 yards, Rayner missed to the right from 30 and then 38, whereas Crosby hit from both distances. Each made good from 43 and 47. From 54, both were 1 for 3. However, Crosby's misses partially were the result of shaky holds by Aaron Rodgers. For the night, Rayner was 4 for 8 and Crosby was 6 for 8. Throughout camp, Crosby has hit 85.6% (83 for 97) compared with 80.6% for Rayner (79 for 98). The Packers cut veteran Billy Cundiff on this day a year ago, handing the job to Rayner. Now Rayner is a lot better than Cundiff, but barring a reversal of form it's possible the Packers might just decide to go with Crosby well before the final roster reduction Sept. 2. It's possible, too, that Rayner could be worth a late-round pick to another club.

    INJURY REPORT

    Tackle Orrin Thompson (knee) returned to practice at night. Tackle Travis Leffew (dizziness) sat out.

    ODDS AND ENDS

    Quarterback Paul Thompson didn't look good Thursday....

    Rookie safety Aaron Rouse saw some time with the No. 1 defense for one of the first times all summer.

    Wide receiver Shaun Bodiford didn't get the chance to run down as a "wedge buster" on kickoffs in Pittsburgh because the No. 1 kick-cover unit never took the field. But look for the 192-pound Bodiford and linebacker Tracy White to be in those positions against Seattle.

    Center Scott Wells has been almost impossible to beat in the one-on-one pass-rush drill. That changed at night when Johnny Jolly walked him right back to the quarterback on a crunching bull rush. Jolly has been one of the most improved players in camp.

    Rookie tight end Clark Harris is getting better as a long snapper.

    SCHEDULE FRIDAY

    Practice is closed to the public and reporters. Thursday marked the end of two-a-days. Next practice is at 6:30 p.m. Monday (pads).
    ______________________________________________________________

    http://www.packersnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070817/PKR01/708170531/1989

    Insider: Kickers get holding equality

    Thumbs up

    Kudos to Packers coach Mike McCarthy and special teams coach Mike Stock for leveling the playing field in the kicking contest....

    Thumbs down

    Though one night practice remains, at 6:30 p.m. Monday, it's safe to say the luster has worn off for many fans

    Did you notice?

    Rookie offensive lineman Allen Barbre, who has been impressive throughout camp, had one of his best showings in the one-on-one pass blocking drill. He won all three of his reps, including one at left tackle against defensive end Larry Birdine. He won both of his reps from his regular left guard spot, stopping first-round draft pick Justin Harrell and Daniel Muir.

    Second-year defensive tackle Johnny Jolly continued to make big plays. He blew up a couple of blockers on a screen pass to Noah Herron that went nowhere during the only drill that featured the No. 1 offense vs. the No. 1 defense.

    Rookie linebacker Rory Johnson was elevated to the No. 1 kickoff return team and the No. 1 kickoff coverage team.
     
  23. Zero2Cool

    Zero2Cool I own a website

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    Leveling the holding... I don't think that's worthy of thumbs up or down as they were experimenting with other holders instead of putting all their eggs in one basket.
     
  24. Greg C.

    Greg C. Cheesehead

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    What they were referring to is the fact that up until then, Crosby had been getting the better holder (Ryan) for the past several practices, while Rayner was stuck with Aaron Rodgers, who is not as good.

    Regarding the pictures above, I have to say that James Jones does NOT look like a rookie. Sort of like how LeBron James always looked so much older and more developed than one would expect for his age when he came into the league (and he's still only about 23). Also like LeBron, he seems very mature. I'm not saying he will have a LeBron-like impact, I'm just saying that these similarities are a very, very good thing.
     
  25. Packnic

    Packnic Cheesehead

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    of course Bron Bron was 18 when he was a rookie and Jones is at least 22 now.

    but im picking up what your laying down. hes looking good so far for a youngster. good enough that they felt ok to early release fergy... thats something at least.



    *edit - Im 25 and i called him a youngster... i should kill myself.
     

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