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Packers DL Letroy Guion Takes First Step Back from Injury

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Packers DL Letroy Guion Takes First Step Back from Injury

Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Letroy Guion by Benny Sieu—USA TODAY Sports.

Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Letroy Guion by Benny Sieu—USA TODAY Sports.

The timing couldn't have been better.

Just three days after veteran Packers defensive lineman was injured in the team's preseason win over the Oakland Raiders this past Friday, fellow defensive lineman Letroy Guion practiced for the first time on Monday since training camp opened in Green Bay.

It appears as if Raji will be lost for the season with a torn biceps, and Guion is being looked at to perhaps fill the void.

"It's always at an urgency when a man goes down," said Guion. "It makes me have to step up. I happen to be that guy, so I'm going to take all my steps forward to do what I got to do and get prepared."

Guion took the first step on Monday, coming off the Non-Football Injury (NFI) list with a hamstring pull reportedly suffered while training on his own during the offseason.

Monday ended what had been a disappointing training camp since being signed as a free agent back in March.

Time was running out for Guion to return for the Packers' all-important regular season opener against the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks in the NFL's annual Kickoff game on Thursday Sept. 4 in primetime.

No doubt about it, missing nearly a month of training camp was not the ideal way to begin his 2014 campaign, but for Guion, it's better late than never. And to hear him say it, Guion felt good taking part in his first practice.

"I feel like I'm in pretty good shape," said Guion. "I ran around today, huffing and puffing. My legs feel good, my body feels good, so I feel like I'm there physically."

Despite taking a big step forward on Monday, it was just one of many for the former Minnesota Vikings defensive lineman, where he spent the first six years of his career.

The coaching staff had Guion on a short leash at Monday's practice held at Ray Nitschke Field and open to the public, the first opportunity for fans and the media to see Guion since minicamp.

"I thought he looked explosive," said head coach Mike McCarthy. "I really liked what I saw from Letroy. Coming off the injury, I thought he got off to a good start. We're obviously limiting his reps, but I thought he had quality reps today."

Neither McCarthy nor Guion would say whether the defensive lineman would return in time to play in the Packers' preseason finale on Thursday against the Kansas City Chiefs.

According to McCarthy, how Guion fares in Wednesday's practice will determine if they allow him to see him in a game environment just three days removed from his first practice.

"He's going to be treated like every other player," said McCarthy. "There's a process that every one of our guys has gone through. You go back to the beginning of training camp, and we'll take another step further I guess it will be on Wednesday's practice and getting some more reps and keep progressing. But I think it would be foolish to throw him out there and give him a full load."

To be sure, Guion isn't guaranteed of a roster spot on the Packers' regular-season roster.

After missing nearly a month of practice, the Packers essentially have an unknown quantity on their hands. Over the course of the month of August, they've also seen the emergence of undrafted rookie Mike Pennel, who is making a major push to win a spot on the 53-man roster.

But Guion is also highly experienced, something Pennel and some of the other young defensive linemen don't have.

"I am very confident," said Guion. "I've been in the league at least seven years now, going on this year. I am very skilled, very talented at the position down there. So I'm just going to go out there and do what I got to do."

Brian Carriveau is the author of the book "It's Just a Game: Big League Drama in Small Town America," and editor at Cheesehead TV and its "Pro Football Draft Preview." To contact Brian, email [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (21) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Eric Bretl's picture

nothing to see here

jeremyjjbrown's picture

If he can make more than 12 tackles I suppose he can replace Raji.

Icebowler's picture

I'm just not sure if Guion and Boyd are big enough to demand double teams. If not, one of the other teams Guards will easily make it to the second level and our ILB play will be even worse. Even if Pennel is for real, he's still a rookie and that scares me. You know Seattle and "Beastmode" are going to just run up the middle until we can stop them.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

"Packers seem to be moving toward a one gap 34 Defense. "

This is what McCarthy promised us in 2009 when they hired Capers.

johnnyd17's picture

any NFL veteran of 6 seasons would not be an unknown quantity...lots of film on this guy...a bargain for sure

lebowski's picture

Still rooting really hard for Pennel, would love to have a presence like him in the middle.

JimTaylor31's picture

Well actually insinuating that Pennel would be a top 10 pick is considered "crazy talk" by most folks. You gotta be kidding? Both he and Elliott need to show something against some #1's before we get too carried away. I remember Vic S'oto and other UDFAs who flashed in the preseason and then faded away. Let's not put them in the Shields and Tramon class just yet. Hope so, but it's still way too early.

Clay's picture

Gold I have a question...

You stated, "In my professional opinion".

Are you in fact a football professional? And in what capacity?

I am a very amateur fan that studies the game a fair amount.

I like your optimism and am no fan of the trolls here, but wow you are like over the top confident in the Pack in every post.

I think you and another poster here may bump heads because you both speak in an authoritarian tone.

If you are really a football professional believe me I am greatly enthused by your optimism about the Pack. I pray to the Gods that Pennel is nothing short of a combination of Godzilla and Hercules, but the fact is we don't know. I suspect you are an avid fan like most of us, who is sometimes right and sometimes wrong.

So, if referencing yourself as a professional was just a figure of speech you were using, you may want to just be a little more humble with the opinions and realize none of us fans have a crystal ball including you.

That way you and aforementioned unnamed poster may yet become friends too!

I hope this comment was taken as friendly unsolicited advice, nothing more, nothing less.

Go Pack.

jeremyjjbrown's picture

Um yeah, he's responding to you, not belittling you up in a comment on a some thread you haven't chosen to participate in.

White92's picture

I love Guion's confidence. He seems ready to grab this opportunity.

White92's picture

WHat happens with Raji? I'm sure some of you arm chair GM's know..injury settlement? IR?

He was on a 1 year deal right? Or am I misremembering?

Evan's picture

IR then free agency (maaaaybe special IR to return designation, but that seems unlikely).

I'd be cool with re-signing him to another 1-year deal, but that will depend on the play of Pennel, Boyd and Guion.

pooch's picture

was invisible all pre season,Pennel is the man,Christ Raji hasent done shit in 3 years,no one in the league offered him a contract

Evan's picture

"was invisible all pre season"

I don't think you were looking then. Raji was having a nice pre-season.

pooch's picture

I couldn't agree more,have not seen Raji do anything this preseason.Let Pennel start Thursday,then bring in Guion or whatever to mop up

pooch's picture

3 years of declining play turned down 8 million dollar contract and still could not produce last year for big contract.How much more incentive you need,loving Pennel he will be the man,has done more in preseason than Raji ever did his 1st year

pooch's picture

get over yourself,he is playing for a living now,the incentive for him is out there,something Raji couldn't grasp

pooch's picture


JimTaylor31's picture

I'll be very surprised if Pennel turns out to be anything more than a rotational guy and maybe not a very effective rotational guy at that. He's just too green with too many red flags to expect anything more. It's nice to hope but past history is more often than not an indication of future results.

johnnyd17's picture

maybe a Packer no more, put on IR...will get surgery and arm treatment...unless he will sign another 1 year deal...crazy thing is, just opinions but, maybe Ted should trade all the 1st round picks for later and more?

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