Notes From Packers Closed Practice

Packers return to work after Saturday's preseason game against the Titans

The Green Bay Packers resumed practice today, following their first preseason game in Tennessee on Saturday night.  With the game having been played in torrential rain for most of the contest, there were some limitations to what the team and head coach Mike McCarthy were able to take away from the performance.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers, wide receiver Jordy Nelson and running back Eddie Lacy did not play on Saturday.  Rodgers and Lacy were held out, presumably for precautionary reasons and given the weather.  Nelson is reportedly dealing with a hamstring injury and is described as “day to day” by McCarthy.

Below are notes and highlights from today’s session as well as a recap of McCarthy’s comments afterward.

Out for today’s practice were Nelson, Davante Adams, Rajion Neal, Tanner Miller, Colt Lyerla, Joe Thomas, Josh Boyd, Letroy Guion and Jerel Worthy

No surprise with Worthy, Guion, Miller and Lyerla, who have all been dealing with previous ailments.  Nelson has the hamstring.  Neal and Thomas are both dealing with knee injuries and McCarthy said neither are expected to be long term.  Adams has a wrist injury and no timetable was given for his return.  Boyd has a rib injury and no timetable given for his return either.

Returning to practice was safety Morgan Burnett.

Vibe was a bit more intense today and there were several little scrums during practice

Players now realize that time is short for them to make an impression and secure a roster spot.  This is especially true for the rookies, undrafted free agents and bubble guys.  Even cornerback Tramon Williams got into it today with receiver Myles White.  Also mixing it up were Ryan Taylor, Adrian Hubbard, Garth Gerhart and Mike Pennel, to name a few.  Taylor reportedly tried to land a blow to the head of Hubbard and missed.  Given his value on special teams, it’s probably a good thing that Taylor is as good at throwing punches as he is at playing tight end.  Yes, I just said that out loud.

Offense ran the ball well today.  Passing, not so much

Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel joked that maybe the Packers are now more of a run than a passing team.  Several receivers had drops today, namely Chris Harper, Kevin Dorsey and White, none of whom can afford any.  One bright spot was a nice catch on a deep ball by Jeff Janis, who made a leaping catch and managed to get both feet in bounds on the play as well.  Silverstein mentioned a few catches by Janis so he appears to be heading in the right direction after missing the first week of camp.

Among the reasons the passing game struggled a bit was likely thanks to some nice pass defense by cornerback Jumal Rolle and safety Sean Richardson.  Rolle is battling hard to crack the roster at a stacked cornerback position.  If he continues to stand out, we could resume the annual discussion about Jarrett Bush’s chances of making this team.  Richardson has all but secured himself a roster spot with his consistently high level of play so far this summer.

– Tennessee game offered the team a chance to play in adverse weather

McCarthy specifically mentioned this today and said it was an environment that he can’t often create for his team.  He said it was good to evaluate how his players perform in weather, given that they typically see elements factoring in late in the season.  While McCarthy was keeping it positive, it was also admittedly difficult to get a better pulse on the team’s performance as a whole.  Had some technical issues on the sidelines with equipment that hindered that process.

– Center J.C. Tretter gets praise

It’s only one game but Tretter started and played on after most of the starting offense gave way to the second and third units.  McCarthy said he had a chance to watch the game again and  Tretter had just one correction.  McCarthy is even more encouraged by how Tretter played in the rain.

– McCarthy’s standouts

McCarthy specifically mentioned Neal, Thomas, Garth Gerhart, Sam Barrington and the secondary as areas he thought played well on Saturday.  Both Thomas and Neal are now battling injuries and their fate rests on how quickly they can return.

McCarthy specifically pointed out Thomas’s play on kick coverage, prior to his injury.  As with any young player trying to earn a roster spot in Green Bay, ability to contribute on special teams is key.  Hopefully Thomas can recover and resume his quest to make this year’s team.

McCarthy talked about Barrington’s being less reserved and having more of an aggressive mindset this season.  Last year was learning and then got hurt.  This year, ready to go.


We’ll keep an eye on the injury situation and expect to see Rodgers and Lacy in action in the dry Edward Jones Dome this Saturday as the Packers head to St. Louis to take on the Rams.




Jason Perone is an independent sports blogger writing about the Packers on

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