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News & notes from Day 1 of camp

Posted by Mike Spofford on July 26, 2013 – 3:40 pm

Here are a few news items and notes from Day 1 of training camp:

Runnin’ with the ones: No real surprises as far as the depth chart goes. In the battle for the starting safety spot alongside Morgan Burnett, M.D. Jennings took the majority of the snaps with the first unit, but Jerron McMillian was rotated in as well. Same arrangement at right tackle, starting with Marshall Newhouse and followed by Don Barclay.

Johnathan Franklin

RB Johnathan Franklin

Sam Shields was the starter at cornerback opposite Tramon Williams, and he could hold down that spot for awhile with Casey Hayward (hamstring) and Davon House (illness) missing practice. At running back, there was a steady rotation of work amongst Alex Green, James Starks, Eddie Lacy, Johnathan Franklin and Angelo Pease.

No first-day jitters: The Packers’ three highest-profile draft picks said they didn’t have any first-day nerves to deal with on the practice field. Neither Datone Jones, Lacy nor Franklin did anything particularly eye-catching, but their enthusiasm for their first pro training camp was evident.

“It was exciting,” Franklin said. “We went through OTAs, so the nervousness got out then, and in rookie minicamp. Today was just learning and understanding the scheme of things, putting things together.”

Jones brushed off even the idea of being nervous.

“I prepare very hard, so I’m very confident in myself,”  he said. “I believe in myself that I can get the job done. I’m able to play fast because I know my assignments. I study a lot.”

Friday’s practice was in shells, and Saturday’s will be, too. The first day in full pads will be Sunday.

“Practice without pads is always tough,” Lacy said. “You can’t really run through them, they’re just tagging off. When we get the pads on, it’ll be different. I think I’ll do pretty good with the pads on.”

Sherrod hopeful: Former first-round pick Derek Sherrod says he feels “a heck of a lot better than at this point last year” in his recovery from a surgically repaired broken leg that cost him all of last season. He reiterated Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s hope that he can return to the field soon, but he’s not putting a timetable on it.

“Just taking it a day at a time,” said Sherrod, who is thought to be a contender in the battle for the right tackle job should he return soon. “It could be tomorrow, it could be whenever, but I’m working very hard and making sure that I am doing everything I can to get out there as soon as possible with my teammates.”

Neal lighter, but waiting: Defensive end Mike Neal has been dogged by injuries throughout his career, but he called this latest abdomen injury that is keeping him out of training camp a “minor setback.”

Neal worked extensively at outside linebacker during OTAs and has slimmed down to help make the transition. He said he now weighs 275 pounds, down nearly 20 from his playing weight of a year ago.

“It’s more natural for me to be at this weight,” said Neal, a stalwart in the weight room throughout his football life. “I feel better at this weight.”

Neal said the coaches didn’t ask him to lose any weight but left the issue up to him. When he gets on the field, which McCarthy said could be a couple of weeks, it will be interesting to see if the Packers employ him more as an inside or outside pass rusher. Neal had 4 1/2 sacks last season as an inside rusher.

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Posted in Packers.com Blog, Training Camp | 15 Comments »

15 Responses to “News & notes from Day 1 of camp”

  1. By Craig Boehm on Jul 26, 2013 | Reply

    I know I won’t get a response to this comment but, I thought the poor planing that the Onieda Gate and tunnel were not completed in time for the opening of training camp. You always talk about having a good experience for the Packer faithful. I guess the next expansion faze will start next week and we will never see what lambeu field will look like. Mark Murphy why don’t you throw another branding iron in the fire so we can see 5 more years of construction. I think Mark Murphy is trying to construct some thing to put his name on. I know this comment will get thrown in the trash, but thats what this looks like for people who want to make that trip to Green Bay. At least you could plan to have things done for all those people your trying to draw. When can I tell my family, lets go to Lambeu Field. Maybe after the Mark Murphy statue is in place.

  2. By Colin on Jul 26, 2013 | Reply

    I cant wait for this season to start!!! So much skill on this team!!!

  3. By mritonia on Jul 26, 2013 | Reply

    Stop whining, you should become a Jets fan

  4. By CincyTom on Jul 26, 2013 | Reply

    Feels good to see a great crop of talented rookies along with our proven vets back in camp. We really need our O-lines and D-lines to improve this year and anchor a team which is deep with talent at the skill positions. Would love to see Derek Sherrod out there soon competing for the starting right tackle slot. Go Pack Go!

  5. By vikingsfool on Jul 26, 2013 | Reply

    Packers window is closed, face it. You have a QB, a WR, and a LB. Beyond that your club is so-so. No defense, no RB, no O-line. Rodgers gets sacked 40+ times, Defense will be worst in the league. If it wasn’t for your QB, you’d have a below .500 team. I’ll be suprised if your club makes it past the first round.
    Vikings 10-6
    Packers 10-6
    Bears 9-7
    Lions 8-8

  6. By kc on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    packers 12-4 vikings 9-7 lions 9-7 bears 8-8

  7. By Ihappydirt on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    vikingstroll, No Rb? Drafted 2, Green finally healthy.

    Worst D? Really? #11 last year, better this year.

    Wasn’t for the QB? Sorry, you don’t get to subtract the QB.I know you wish you could.

  8. By Eli S on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Vikingsfool, Looks like Greg Jennings got a username.

  9. By OKGOPACK on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Good ones, ihappy and Eli. We are NFC North Champs!

  10. By vikingsfool on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    HAR HAR HAR…You Packer Fans are too easy

  11. By CanadianBill on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Why does anyone even acknowledge a Viking fan. He received his reaction he wanted. What have they ever won?

  12. By Ihappydirt on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Bill, You’re not the boss of me.

    Fool, Glad you’re so easily amused.

  13. By Dan A on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Hopefully, Derrick Sherrod will be able to practice/play this season. It has been a long recovery for him with the type of injury he had…get well Mr. Sherrod we need you.

    Go Pack Go

  14. By Fireman Dave on Jul 27, 2013 | Reply

    Growing up in Southern WI, we always had our share of Bears fans and there jabs to deal with. But they won their share of games and had a right to be proud of their team. I have since moved to Western WI and now live amongst many Viking fans. It is such a difference. After 15+ years here I still don’t understand their fascination with the Packers. Many Vikings fans would rather see the Pack lose than their own team win. They are constantly trolling Packer websites taking shots. A wise man once said, “Just Win Baby”………maybe that is the problem. We as packer fans have been blessed with three of the finest quarterbacks to ever play the game. Maybe jealousy plays a part in this as well. I am just thankful to be a fan of the greatest franchise in football history. GO PACK GO!!

  15. By CanadianBill on Jul 28, 2013 | Reply

    Well said Dave

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