Even though there’s less encouraging injury news elsewhere on the team, the Packers are getting healthy in the defensive backfield. “Safety Charles Woodson and cornerback Sam Shields, one half of the Green Bay Packers’ starting secondary, returned to practice Wednesday, ending a six-week span in which both were sidelined,” writes Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Whether either or both of them is ready to play on Sunday against the Lions, remains to be seen. There’s also the issue of how much playing time they’ll receive upon return. Cornerbacks Casey Hayward and Davon House have played well in the absence of Woodson and Shields.
The news on the injury front is more disappointing outside the secondary. “Guard T.J. Lang (ankle), linebacker Clay Matthews (hamstring), defensive end Mike Neal (shoulder), receiver Jordy Nelson (hamstring), running back James Starks (knee) and defensive end C.J. Wilson (knee) were held out of Wednesday’s practice,” writes Bill Huber of Packer Report. McCarthy had particularly disheartening sentiments to share regarding Lang and Neal, saying Lang wasn’t progressing the way he’d like and that he didn’t feel good about Neal. The chances that they miss Sunday’s game is looking more and more likely.
Drawing parallels between the injury situations of the Packers in 2010 (the year they won the Super Bowl) and the current Packers team is Tom Silverstein of the Journal Sentinel.
Not only did Ryan Grant return to the Packers, he received a standing ovation from the players in a team meeting. “When the Green Bay Packers running back met his old (and new) teammates again, he was met with booming applause,” writes Tyler Dunne at JSOnline. “The team’s fifth all-time leading rusher is back for the stretch run when the Packers need him most. Cedric Benson is down. James Starks is down. Brandon Saine is down.” Mike McCarthy said he expects Ryan Grant to be ready to play on Sunday. Don’t expect him to play a large role any time soon, but he should be able to spell Alex Green every now and again.
More on the Packers signing Ryan Grant comes from the Journal Sentinel, Associated Press, Press-Gazette, twice, Wisconsin State Journal, Fox Sports Wisconsin, Packer Report, WFRV and ESPNMilwaukee.com.
Injured offensive lineman Bryan Bulaga confirmed he does not have a dislocated hip to reporters on Wednesday. “Bulaga said he suffered a small fracture in the hip capsule where the femur rests and that the prognosis for recovery is excellent,” writes Tom Silverstein. “He said he visited a specialist in Tennessee on Tuesday and that the fracture is healing well.” Bulaga also said he did not suffer the same injury as Bo Jackson, a rare subluxation of the hip. Whether Bulaga takes part in the Packers’ offseason practices is unknown, but from all indications, he should be ready for training camp.
More on Bryan Bulaga comes from ESPNMilwaukee.com.
Rookie offensive lineman Don Barclay is in line to make his first career start if Lang can’t go on Sunday, writes Pete Dougherty of the Press-Gazette.
Cornerback Tramon Williams has reportedly been fined $21,000 for his hit last week against Minnesota.
Wide receiver Donald Driver is trying to overcome a broken thumb, writes Paul Imig of Fox Sports Wisconsin.
Wide receiver James Jones is remaining patient, according to Lori Nickel at JSOnline.
The return of Shea Allard to the Packers’ practice squad is mentioned at the Press-Gazette.
A preview of the Packers-Lions game is provided by the Associated Press.
The folks at JSOnline talk about the Ryan Grant signing in a video.
Video: Larry McCarren shares thoughts about his former coach Bart Star at NBC26…
Brian Carriveau is the author of “It’s Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America,” a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and an editor at Cheesehead TV. To contact Brian, email firstname.lastname@example.org.