During the Mike McCarthy era in Green Bay, the Packers have historically foregone one day of practice in minicamp in favor of a team building activity. On Wednesday, that activity was an afternoon of clay pigeon shooting at Little Creek Lodge in Little Suamico, Wis. "Players and coaches were divided up into groups of six and rotated through the venue’s different shooting stations, which featured clay targets fired in various directions and from different distances," writes Mike Spofford of the Packers official website. "Some stations included an elevated shooting platform." It's fun to see the players take part in an event like this once a year.
The Packers are adding a wrinkle to their defense this season, according to Pete Dougherty of the Press-Gazette. "In a less dramatic but noteworthy change, coach Mike McCarthy and defensive coordinator Dom Capers also have decided to play more dime defense (six defensive backs) after relying primarily on nickel (five defensive backs) personnel on passing downs the last three years," writes Dougherty. This should be viewed as an attempt to contend with pass-heavy NFL offenses that are using more and more multi-receiver sets. Keen observation by Dougherty. Highly suggested reading.
An in-depth examination into the fundamentals of tackling in the NFL (or lack thereof), and the Packers in particular, is undertaken by Tyler Dunne of the Journal Sentinel. Last year's tackling woes are revealed: "Tramon Williams, battling a shoulder injury, shied from piles. Charles Woodson missed 18 tackles. In the slot, he too often went for the strip. At safety, a giant club over Morgan Burnett's broken hand affected his tackling. And many fans still lament Peprah bouncing of Hakeem Nicks in the playoffs." That's only a sampling. Sam Shields isn't spared. Several reasons for shoddy tackling are mentioned, from lack of practice time to an emphasis on creating turnovers to the glorification of big hits. Another great article.
An enlightening interview with outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene on first-round draft choice Nick Perry is shared by Kevin Seifert of ESPN.com. Greene gets into the transition Perry is making from college to professional football. "Now he's got to stand up in a two-point stance and has to capture all five eligibles in his vision," Greene is quoted as saying And he has to know what each one of those guys are. Is it a halfback,? Is it a running back? Is it a fulback? Is it a tight end? Is it the second tight end? Is it a receiver? He's got to capture all five eligibles, understand who they are and what they mean to his pass coverage responsibility. And to see motions and to see shifts in alignments, that's the hardest thing, taking a guy like this and now focusing from sideline to sideline and capturing everything." Greene goes onto explain even more. It's an insider's look into the development of an NFL rookie. Fantastic insight.
Defensive lineman B.J. Raji speaks frankly about his performance last season in an interview with Fox Sports Wisconsin and reporter Paul Imig. "The fact of the matter is it's just the way it was last year. I didn't get it done," said Raji. "Hopefully this year, I think will be different." Last year Raji's sack production slipped, and the performance of the defense as a whole did as well. The onus is on Raji and company to improve.
Aaron Rodgers' relationship with quarterbacks coach Ben McAdoo is touched upon in an article by Chris Jenkins of the Associated Press.
A feature on backup quarterback Graham Harrell is written by Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com.
Former Packers running back Dorsey Levens talks about concussions with NinersNation.com.
Installation of the markers on the Packers Heritage Trail is complete.
Breakout candidates on the Packers are predicted by Andrew Garda in a video at Bleacher Report.
Video: A look back at Clay Matthews' recent youth football camp is taken by Fox 11...
Brian Carriveau is a writer for Cheesehead TV. To contact Brian, email [email protected].
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