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Cory's Corner: The Jordy Nelson effect

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Cory's Corner: The Jordy Nelson effect

Twenty-nine days ago, the Packers made their fans’ hearts skip a beat upon hearing that star wide receiver Jordy Nelson would be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. Nelson tore his left ACL last August and was held out longer this year because of a “hiccup” to the other knee.

On Monday, Nelson strapped on the pads and plunked his head into the gold helmet for the first practice of the 2016 season.

“Hardly even a practice,” Nelson said with laugh and million-dollar smile. “It honestly didn’t. It felt pretty normal. Usually when you come back for camp it’s a little awkward just because it’s your first day in pads even if you played the year before because we don’t do anything in the offseason. Like I said, it wasn’t anything much — I hardly did anything anyways.”

Maybe his first practice was a little on the light side, but Nelson’s return is Thanksgiving for guys like Aaron Rodgers, Jared Cook and the receiving corps. Rodgers, because when his No. 1 target from 2013 and 2014 was missing last year, he didn’t quite look himself. Cook, because with Rodgers attracting plenty of attention on the outside, he’s bound to get acres of open real estate to roam. And the receiving corps, because the average age of Geronimo Allison, Ty Montgomery, Trevor Davis, Davante Adams, Jared Abbrederis and Jeff Janis is 23. These guys need a leader and why not follow a guy that is one of two receivers in franchise history with two seasons of 13-plus touchdowns? The other by the way, is Sterling Sharpe.

And yet, he still gets overlooked. He was selected to his first Pro Bowl in 2014 and that wasn’t even his best season. In 2011, he only started nine games and had two more touchdowns.

But he doesn’t care about that. Heck, he doesn’t even care about getting hit in Week 1.

“I don’t think it’s important,” Nelson said, who mentioned that he’s on track to play in the season opener. “I think if it’s something we do, fine. If it’s something we don’t do, that’s fine. So that’s nothing that I’m worried about.”

But that doesn’t mean this has been easy road. Playing football in the summer in all of places Florida to start the season isn’t what anyone asks for.

“I’d say conditioning more than anything, especially being in Jacksonville Week 1. And I’m sure everyone is going to pick it apart if we miss a play here or there, it’s going to be because we missed all last year and training camp. I’m sure it was already out there today that we missed one pass today.”

Nelson is 31. It’s hard to believe that this will be his ninth season as a pro. He has been Mr. Steady his entire career and Monday was another example of that. He never showed one ounce of anxiety about his health. He knows that another blow to his knee may cost him his career and he also knows that many teams will likely be targeting said knee.

But he doesn’t have time to think about that stuff.

He’s got back shoulder fades to brush up on.

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (5) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

EdsLaces's picture

In jordy we trust..

Nick Perry's picture

I thought Cory brought up a very interesting point, one that some of us have mentioned even last year and that was the other Wide Receivers ages. These guys are ALL young and with the exception of Adams and Cobb they haven't had many snaps between them. Heck even Adams is still young but they DO need a leader, a main man on the outside and Nelson is that in spades.
In many ways we don't know what we really have at the WR positions. We have a lot of projection, a lot of what we THINK we have. Some have mentioned the Packers might just have a bunch of guys who play WR. I think they have a bunch of WR who are just starting to scratch the surface. Nelson is the absolute "Perfect Player" to help lead these youngsters. He's been there done that many times on the biggest of stages.
With Cobb and Adams healthy, the addition of Cook, Nelson healthy, and the others now being coached AND lead, the sky is the limit for this group IMO.

Welcome Back Jordy!!

Since '61's picture

Having Jordy back will help the entire offense and particularly the WRs. Any team, is any sport, misses their star player(s) when they are not on the field. Teams and plays are built around star players. They are especially critical in the playoffs when you need your best players to make plays. Jordy's return can only help the young receivers evolve at this early point in their careers. Thanks, Since '61

Archie's picture

I certainly agree teams are built around start players and just having Jordy back in the game will help every facet of the Packer's offense, defense and ST. I expect steady Jordy this year, not spectacular Jordy. But steady Jordy could be enough if the other skill players pick it up a notch. Cook could be really exciting. Cobb and Adams seem to be having pretty good camps. Don't know what Davis can do in his rookie year but he has great speed, hands and can run good routes. Now if he can only get off the LOS. Ditto Allison. And Ty Montgomery has the potential to help a great deal. Pack offense went flatline after he was injured last year. Rip looks good and Lact/Starks are ready to go. Crockett/Burks have a heck of a battle going on. Rodgers will be at his peak this year. And Hundley will be healthy sometime in SEP. Best OL we have had under TT. What's not to love here?! Super Bowl or Bust!

Archie's picture

Forget to mention Abby who can contribute key 1st downs. And the defense is flying to the ball better than we have seen in a long time. If the DL can hold up till Penell gets back, things will get real interesting.

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