The Green Bay Packers have lost their second player to an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear in less than a week. Offensive lineman Don Barclay was injured during today’s practice and was carted off the field. Wes Hodkiewicz of the Green Bay Press-Gazette shared the unfortunate news on twitter.
Last week, rookie wide receiver Jared Abbrederis tore his ACL and will also miss this upcoming season.
With the return of tackle Bryan Bulaga, who has missed most of the last two seasons due to injuries of his own, Barclay was expected to be the team’s sixth offensive lineman. Barclay was also one of the only lineman versatile enough to play all five positions on the line.
This is a big loss for the Packers, in terms of their depth on the offensive line. Behind Barclay and the current starters are Derek Sherrod, Lane Taylor, Corey Linsley, Garth Gerhart, Aaron Adams, and a heap of rookies pushing to make the roster.
Sherrod has had a marginal training camp so far. He has struggled with consistency, but the better news is that he’s been practicing every day. Hopefully the horrific leg injury suffered in 2011 is behind him and he can remain available.
Linsley has made some steady progress at center and may end up pushing J.C. Tretter for the starting role. The fifth-rounder provides valuable depth at a position that has lacked it for quite some time.
Taylor was on the 53-man roster last year and played very sparingly. He has game experience, but he would be shaky at best if thrown into the fire.
Gerhart was re-signed to the team’s practice squad in October of last year and isn’t expected to make much of a push this summer. Being a true center and with Linsley battling with Tretter, Gerhart is not likely to make strong push for a roster spot this summer.
Beyond that, it’s bare bones. I had to refer to the Packers team website to refresh myself on who was left. Unless any of them make a huge leap over the next three weeks, that doesn’t bode well for the line if any of the current starters are hurt and have to miss time.
The Packers will likely gain a few more roster spots once Barclay and Abbrederis are placed on season-ending injured reserve. I would expect the team to strongly consider some experienced depth on the offensive line to fill at least one of those spots and see what they end up with after the preseason ends. There are just 31 more days until the regular season opener.
Jason Perone is an independent sports blogger writing about the Packers on AllGreenBayPackers.comFollow Jason Perone: