Packers' Linsley "Excited" to Get Back to Work

As it stands right now, there's no more debate on who should be snapping the ball from center in Green Bay.

As it stands right now, it's Corey Linsley's job, but it can also be his job to lose.

Drafted by the Packers in 2014 and initially projected to backup then-starter J.C. Tretter, Linsley took the reigns snapping the ball to Aaron Rodgers as a rookie. He went on to start every game in 2014, including the playoffs.

Tretter, who the Packers let loose in free agency in March, no longer provides an alternative route at the position—an understated luxury for them during the last few seasons.

However, despite Linsley projected to enter the 2017 season as a starter with versatile offensive lineman Don Barclay in the supporting role, the hope is that he'll be ready to go by training camp.

Linsley revealed to team reporters after Wednesday's practice that he had been dealing with the same right ankle injury that kept him out of three games in 2015, even after surgery just two months ago.

"We have a timetable with the training room and when I can do certain things and when I can't," Linsley said. "I don't know when I'll be back, but we're hoping sooner rather than later.

"It's kind of been lingering. We didn't necessarily know what it was, but it's hurting for the past year-and-a-half."

Aside from his prior ankle setbacks, Linsley also tore his hamstring just before offseason team activities began in May of 2016—and then again two months later after rehabbing himself back to health.

it led to Linsley beginning last season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, only to finally be activated come November. It was the second time in the last three seasons that the Packers had a center begin the season on the PUP list with designation to return in November.

If the Packers are lucky, the coming months won't behold the third time this happens in four years. On Linsley's watch, he's hopeful with his ankle.

"It feels better than it did all last year and the latter half of the previous year," Linsley replied to reporters who were rightfully curious about the injury. "That's reassuring; to know that I'm already a step ahead of where I was."

Linsley started the first 30 games of his career even despite these obstacles, and much like the players occupying the weekly team injury report over the last couple of seasons, he attempted to play through a majority of his pain.

"It took some time to figure it out... It was a different injury."

Now, the Packers can be hopeful to have Linsley back for training camp as it's unlikely he'll participate in any of the OTAs. Otherwise, Barclay will see practice reps at center as opposed to any of the tackle positions where his deficiencies have been exposed.

With the opportunity to participate in minicamp and enter the regular season healthy for the first time since 2015, Linsley can top his rookie campaign in which he earned a spot on the Pro Football Writer's Association All-Rookie team alongside Packers teammate Ha Ha Clinton-Dix.

"My ankle structurally feels pretty good, so, I'm excited. When I get back into the full swing of things and to play on it and be healthy."

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Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Comments (8)

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Nick Perry's picture

May 28, 2017 at 01:34 pm

Just get healthy as quickly as possible. The thought of Barclay at center sparks a uneasiness and nauseous feeling in my stomach.

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Spock's picture

May 28, 2017 at 02:19 pm

On the Packers.com website there's an article on Linsley where it states. "A consultation and subsequent procedure showed there was a connection between a lingering ankle injury and the hamstring issue that hampered him last summer. He finally had answers." Glad to hear he seems to be on track for a good recovery!

Read more: http://www.packers.com/news-and-events/article-player-feature/article-1/...

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Zachary Jacobson's picture

May 28, 2017 at 03:42 pm

Yep. The initial thought is that the ankle injury led to the hamstring. More pressure on the ankle, more pressure on Linsley to play out of his comfort zone and alter his maneuvering - thus, wounding the hamstring.

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Ibleedgreenmore's picture

May 28, 2017 at 06:55 pm

When he is healthy he is very good, strong guy in the middle hope he does well this year all the better.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

May 29, 2017 at 12:16 am

"Packers' Linsley "Excited" to Get Back to Work"

I guess he is re-habbing, but that isn't the same as participating in practice, nor is it the most exciting thing in the world.

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Rossonero's picture

May 29, 2017 at 08:10 am

It's a make or break year for Linsley. Also a contract year. I was thrilled with his rookie season, but it's been a frustrating road ever since then for him and us fans.

Our safety net of Tretter is long gone. Like Nick Perry mentioned above, having Don Barclay fill in is a disaster waiting to happen. I'd rather have Kofi Amichia take some snaps at center.

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Brian Ringwood's picture

May 29, 2017 at 01:31 pm

what are you saying...'make or break year'...he's the starter and would be the starter even if Tretter was still hear. make or break insinuates that if he gets hurt he's outta here...stop being a little drama queen...just hope he heals before TC and stays that way all year long.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

May 29, 2017 at 07:08 pm

Brian, Linsley's reliability/availability has been mediocre.

Linsley played 100% of the snaps in 2014.
Linsley played 69.9% of the snaps in 2015.
Linsley played 55.1% of the snaps in 2016.

Looks like a trend to me, one that he needs to reverse. That is why I am in no hurry to extend Linsley. He needs to prove he is healthy at least in TC. Linsley is good when healthy (better than Tretter), and is the clear starter. His back-ups are simply dreadful though.

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