Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Analysis from Packers Training Camp

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Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football
Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football

Another week of Packers training camp is in the books. Is it Sept. 8 yet?

Finley pipes down
I’ve never been one of those people who gets all bent out of shape whenever Jermichael Finley says something that stirs the pot — I’ll take honesty and candor over canned cliches any day. But it looks like Finley is at least trying the cliche route…for now. Will a boring Finley in front of the microphones lead to a more exciting Finley on the football field? I don’t think one has anything to do with the other. If Finley becomes a force at tight end, it won’t be because he zipped his lips during training camp. Besides, if he does finally break out, people would probably be more tolerant of whatever does come out of his mouth.

Hawk OK with pay cut
Calling it “more of an ego thing than anything that guys can’t get over,” LB A.J. Hawk spoke about taking a pay cut this offseason in order to stay with the Packers. After the slash in pay, Hawk is due to make $10.6 million over the final three years of his deal. That sounds like more than enough money for a guy who rarely makes impactful plays. It’s good to hear Hawk speak openly about taking a cut and being a team guy, but deep down, even he has to know that there probably wasn’t another team out there that would be willing to pay him over $10 million. It’s still a great deal for Hawk, and the Packers obviously think it’s a fair price for a LB that hasn’t made many flash plays, but is healthy and ready to go every Sunday.

Bakhtiari making a move
We’ve been hearing nothing but good things about David Bakhtiari. There are even rumblings that he might end up winning the starting right tackle job. The rookie from Colorado appears to be plenty athletic to be the kind of pass protector the Packers like. And with Marshall Newhouse being, well, Marshall Newhouse, and Don Barclay horsing around at backup center, perhaps the window is open for the rookie to win the job. But remember: We haven’t made it to the first exhibition game yet. All rookies are getting loved up right now because they’re new, they’re fresh, their ceilings are perceived to be high and we don’t know their shortcomings yet.

WRs battle royal
Where’s Vince McMahon when you need him? The battle royal to become the Packers Nos. 4, 5 or 6 WR is going strong with Jarrett Boykin likely taking the lead after a couple of nice plays during Friday night’s team session. Jeremy Ross also probably has an edge because of his return ability, but after muffing a key punt in the playoff loss to the 49ers, Ross has also let a few punts bounce off his hands in camp. Of the other candidates, the 6-foot-2, 215-pound Charles Johnson intrigues me.

Packers Family Night: Last night was the Packers annual intra-squad scrimmage. The kicking competition turned out to be the highlight of the evening, but not for a good reason. Read about that and other happenings from our own Jersey Al’s First Impressions and Cheesehead TV’s Zach Kruse’s Quick Hits. You can read some comments from Crosby, McCarthy and Tavecchio in this article on Packersnews.com.

Other notes

  • It was encouraging to read reports about Eddie Lacy looking tough in short-yardage situations. No more quick handoffs to John Kuhn on 3rd and 1 would be a very good thing.
  • Randall Cobb is dropping a few balls in practice. People are getting wound up. He’d get a case of the dropsies every now and then last season too. It’s something Cobb needs to work on, but I don’t think we need to worry too much about it.
  • Ted Thompson spoke about Brett Favre this week. I agree with John Rehor: This reconciliation needs to move forward sooner rather than later.
  • Congratulations to Dave Robinson on going into the Pro Football Hall of Fame!
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Adam Czech is a freelance reporter and a Packers fan living in the Twin Cities. Follow Adam on Twitter. Read more of Adam\\\'s writing on the Packers here.

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  • Oppy

    Both Lacy and Green looked particularly good for family night, both putting up very solid YPC’s, with Lacy looking like “he’s a problem” (In the very, very good way!)

    After hearing through camp thus far that Starks was looking extremely good and especially comfortable and confident in the screen game, he decided to come out and shit the bed for family night. Very disappointing. To be honest, I’m at the point with Starks that even if he had a great showing in live action last night, I wouldn’t hold my breath until I see him stay healthy and play 5 games straight.

    Also quite underwhelmed with Franklin who also was creating a nice buzz through camp thus far but looked every bit the rookie last night as well.

    Anyone have any solid impressions of Terrell Manning, Nate Palmer, or that Mulumba fellow last night? I didn’t watch the defense all too closely.

  • http://www.lyrictrumpet.com Bearmeat

    You know what’s amazing to me – how lazy the national media is.

    GB has 2 bad run D games against AP, and 1 in the playoffs against Kaepernick, and all of a sudden they are the worst run D in the history of the NFL.

    Get a clue jerks. GB finished 11th in scoring D, 11th in yards allowed per game on D, and 16th in yards allowed running per game. Not elite, but certainly not terrible. And with the ascending young players, they’ll only get better at DL.

    SMH

    • Stroh

      Well you gotta admit that they were EXCEEDINGLY bad in those 4 games. Peterson had over 500 yds in 3 games against the Packers, when they knew he was coming and SF everyone knew would want to pound the Packers D w/ the run. So in the games that the Packer run D had to be at its best, it was instead at its worse. Sorry but that overshadows all the rest of the season IMO. I do agree that it generally was better last year and will be even more improved this year. But they have to prove themselves against the best to gain the respect back.

      • PatMc

        have to agree with Stroh. Those 4 games showed the world that GB was NOT a top 5 team. The “D” needs to control the run yds every game. That includes SF, Washington, Vikings and seattle.

        They have the chance to earn respectability on game 1 and game 2. They need to earn it.

  • GBPDAN

    How did Perry and Jones look in the scrimmage?These two players need to be productive in order for the D to improve

    • Lucas

      Jones has that “gonna be a beast” vibe that CMIII had his first family night. Perry showed he could hold the edge and collapse, but nothing spectacular.

  • Alex Parkhurst

    Our offense last year was one dimensional which doesn’t help the defense as they are right back on the field if you can’t convert short third downs and we couldn’t. The addition of Lacy if he stays healthy will help both sides of the ball. It relives Aaron Rodgers and will vastly reduce the sack total.

  • http://Allpackers.com Nick Perry

    Adam you mentioned you were intrigued with Charles Johnson. Have you actually seen him participate yet? Just wondering…

    • Lucas

      I think that’s the intrigue part.

    • Batavia Greg

      He truly is a mystery man. Anyone whose “Carlos Danger Name Generator” pseudonym is “Dario Badass” has got to be intriguing.

    • Adam Czech

      His size intrigues me. I haven’t seen him actually do anything.

      I was “intrigued” by Tori Gurley as well, and look how that turned out…..

      • Batavia Greg

        If you are intrigued by Johnson’s size (6′-2″, 215 lbs), you must be easily intrigued. There were many WRs coming out of college this year of comparable size (e.g., Keenan Allen, Cordarrelle Patterson, Terrance Williams, Da’Rick Rogers, Cobi Hamilton, Aaron Mellette, Conner Vernon, etc.). Now, Tori Gurley is a different story. Although there were some in this year’s draft, there weren’t that many WRs who are 6′-4″ and weigh 232 lbs. Marcus Davis at 6-3, 233 lbs., whom the Jets signed as an UDFA, comes to mind.