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Bulaga Works At Left Guard/Team Pushes News

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Bulaga Works At Left Guard/Team Pushes News

For the first time all training camp, Packers first round pick Bryan Bulaga took some reps at the left guard position during this afternoon's practice. At first he worked in with the number two offensive line but later during team drills the rookie out of Iowa took reps with the number ones, taking the place of Daryn Colledge.

Coach Mike McCarthy had indicated during OTAs and Mini-Camp that the team intended to keep Bulaga strictly at left tackle. Though he and offensive coordinator Joe Philbin denied it at the time, they are no doubt mindful of the struggles that Daryn Colledge partly attributed to his many position changes.

But there was Bulaga this afternoon, at left guard.

After practice, Mike McCarthy indicated Bulaga had "earned the right" to compete for the starting left guard spot with Daryn Colledge and Alan Barbre.

What I find fascinating is that before any reporter had a chance to pick up on the fact that Bulaga was indeed working at guard, the Packers used their official Twitter feed to "announce" the fact. Well before any Tweet from a reporter, the Packers Tweeted the below:

Bulaga is working as a backup LG at #PackersCamp

Then, an hour later, again before any reporter had a chance to pick up on it:

Bryan Bulaga has been rotating in with the 1's at LG #PackersCamp

I'm sorry, but you've got to wonder if this "competition" is going to be a fair fight if the team is actively reporting/promoting the fact a positional battle that just happens to involve their first round pick.

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JimR_inDC's picture

Maybe Colledge is going to be trade bait.

CounterPoint's picture

Bedard had the 1st team reps for Bulaga first in my timeline, but that is probably besides the point.

I for one don't believe it will be a "competition" (as in, rigged) like the Spitz/Wells battle for center was last year, simply because there is no pressure to get Bulaga on the field. It seems many (myself included) would rather he remain at LT to narrow his focus.

some_dude's picture

I'm surprised they didn't just go with Spitz if they didn't trust College, must prefer him at centre over D-Smith. If the Bulaga's got the talent then there's little point keeping him benched. But then we said the same about Lang and unfortunately he still can't get a shot.

CSS's picture

Should Bulaga truly be thrown into the fray at LG moving forward (while obviously taking reps at LT) it's obvious this will divide many/most Packer fans, there certainly will not be a shortage of opinions based on:

1) Last years disasterous start and prolific/frequent OL breakdowns.
2) Shuffeling multiple players to multiple positions with little continuity; and
3) The College disaster at LT during critical points in the season.

I've watched Bulaga every year at the University of Iowa, he's neither Daryn College from the neck-up, nor the neck-down. He's played every position but center and dominated. He's more athletic than given credit for and an upgrade when runing the football in contrast to every starter but Josh Sitton.

Yes, I'm still traumatized and suffering from the College-syndrom. My 2 cents: Your split and set (feet-positioning) isn't that different at LG and LT. The transition is in the kick slide and Bulaga most certainly needs the reps against faster DE's. However, it will allow him the opportunity to see defensive stunts on the left side, tackle to guard.

At the end of the day, I do subscribe to the philosophy of placing the 5 most talented/dependable lineman on the field. Go through the last 5 years and rarely does a drafted LT cut his teeth at the LT position. I 'feel' Bulaga is capable of sliding over (should he truly win the LG position) to LT and not suffer as a byproduct.

This could take on a life of it's own, depending on what the staff does in the near future. It's just an opinion.

Last thing: I don't buy for a second that Bulaga is getting the nod due to his draft status. No way, no how. Too much on the line to think executive egos dictate early career playing time.

Enjoy the debate, Cheers!

pitts's picture

who blocks for grant who blocks so rodgers can pass the ball the is more important than rodgers. look how many sacks last yr. the end

pitts's picture

the off line is #1 makes a team,no protection, here comes the sacks.bears,lions signed agents I hope no injuries to book end vets maybe bart can play a couple downs

pitts's picture

get ready flynn. your on deck.

pitts's picture

this is like the whos who list block,block,run tackle,intercept,kick,pass block,,water boy thristy game time more chips and beer ,pop, water to go pack go.

Asshalo's picture

It never hurts to give your number one pick publicity especially if he's exceeding expectations. It could mean a number of things. For example, maybe the organization is sending a message that their first rounder isn't going to take a year off. There could be an ulterior motives. We shall see.

Asshalo's picture

The blogosphere made similar accusations against Ryan Grant a year ago-- that he was getting an unfair advantage because of is contract. Same with Dez Bishop and Hawk, it's just not that clear. And if first rounders were really given that preference, you would think Raji would have got more time last year.

redlights's picture

Why don't they just start every third quarter with Bulaga and Lang at the tackles for a few series, depending on their play. It would give Cliffy and Tausch a break and extend their season?

PackersRS's picture

So up until now, there were no talks about Bulaga competing for the LG spot prior to this moment, but this is somehow the management showing preference?

Or could it be that he has actually outperformed Colledge and Spitz in the practices, and that he has shown enough so that the management will put him into competition for a starting spot?

Cmon Aaron, that insinuation is completely unbased. Fact is that Bulaga was drafted because of his potential, and that neither Colledge nor Spitz have proven to be reliable players so far. I myself would prefer that he sticks at LT and learns it properly, but I still think that LG is the weakest spot on our OL, and that, if he can upgrade it, the better.

Why isn't the management putting Bulaga to compete with Josh Sitton, an OT from the little Central Florida, that was adcquired in the 4th round, with a compensatory pick?

dilligaff's picture

I am fine with this. Start your best 5 lineman. Lang can still fill that backup role to finish the game out if one of our tackles goes out during the game like he did last year.

Then the following week you can make adjustments.

NYPacker's picture

I think this just goes to show how much this team loves Breno Giocomini. I mean seriously, if both Chad Clifton and Mark Tauscher go down, I doubt they play musical chairs by sliding Bulaga over to LT. Instead they go by last year's routine with Lang filling in for Clifton while Giocomini finally gets the nod for RT.

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