On the Packers calendar today, the team hits the practice field for the final day of training camp at 10:15 a.m....
Rookie running back James Starks may practice today reports Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "RB James Starks, who hasn't done anything with the team since injuring a hamstring July 30, said he might return Tuesday," writes McGinn. If Starks practices, he would be ineligible to be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list to start the regular season. That would have four short days whether to cut him or place him on the 53-man roster. If cut, he is eligible to be placed on the practice squad.
Outside linebacker Brad Jones has downplayed the fact he's been practicing with a harness on his shoulder says Tom Silverstein of the Journal Sentinel. "Jones hasn't taken part in any contact since injuring the shoulder Aug.?19, missing both the Seattle and Indianapolis exhibition games," writes Silverstein. "It appears doubtful he'll play against Kansas City Thursday night, meaning he'll enter the season opener with just one game under his belt." Jones describes his harness as a tape job and not an apparatus he has to wear. He also says he feels good and doesn't anticipate his shoulder being a problem throughout the season.
Cullen Jenkins spoke very highly of rookie defensive lineman Mike Neal. “He’s strong as heck with a lot of quickness and a lot of explosion,” Jenkins is quoted as saying by Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. “He’s got to be one of the best rookies I’ve seen coming in for a while, especially on the D-line. He just looks like he’s ready to contribute right now. Obviously, he’s going to keep getting better, but he already looks like a good player.” Neal figures to be the first player off the bench on the defensive line considering all the starters stay healthy.
Beyond Neal, Bill Huber of Packer Report says the Packers need Justin Harrell. "Clearly, the Packers want him to make the team," writes Huber. "He’s in the fourth year of his six-year rookie deal and has pocketed $6.07 million in guaranteed money — including bonuses of about $518,000 already this year, according to salary data provided to Packer Report. For that money, he’s played in 13 regular-season games and has made exactly zero impact plays." As long as he stays healthy through Thursday's game, I expect Harrell to make the 53-man roster.
Veteran linebacker Nick Barnett is featured in an article from Tom Silverstein noting how he's not the ironman he used to be. "Through nearly five weeks of camp, Barnett has missed twice the number of practices he missed from '03-'08, compelled to take it easy because his twice surgically repaired right knee - along with coach Mike McCarthy - has demanded it. It's just a fact of life he has to accept," writes Silverstein.
A documentary is being created about Packers fans. "[The filmmaker's] project will follow selected Packers fans throughout this season," according to Warren Gerds of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. "She has started filming and is looking for people who want to be in the documentary or will help out with the production." Follow the link to find out more about the film.
Mr. Bacon over at Pocket Doppler shares his thoughts on tight end Tom Crabtree. "He is a free agent that has cought [sic] on fire recently and may evaluate management to consider trading Donald Lee," says Mr. Bacon. "Crabtree is the opposite TE of a Finley. He is a pure blocker, which is awesome in its own right. A blocking TE is needed heavily in the goaline situations. Plus, a TE can be a Fullback as well which could put Quinn Johnson out on a trade. I think its necessary to at least keep this guy because we need a TE with some blocking skills. Finley, for all he is worth right now, is not a blocker he is a athlete."
Kareem Copeland of the Press-Gazette does a good job detailing punt returner Jason Chery's recent rise from obscurity. Recommended reading.
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