4

August

Packers News: Report: Bryan Bulaga Suffers Knee Injury

Here we go again. Bryan Bulaga may miss 2013 with an apparent knee injury

The Green Bay Packers may have already suffered their first major injury of 2013 and they have yet to play a preseason game.

Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel is reporting via Twitter that left tackle Bryan Bulaga suffered a knee injury during Saturday’s Family Night scrimmage and that the injury could be severe.  According to McGinn, the team is “hoping for the best but fearing the worst.”  If the worst case scenario comes to fruition, Bulaga will be on injured reserve for a second straight season.

It’s unclear which knee Bulaga injured, but if it’s the same leg as his hip injury from last season then there could be some long-term repercussions for Bulaga.  As the Packers’ best offensive lineman on a newly revamped line, this injury could prove devastating for Green Bay.

As for what the Packers will do in Bulaga’s absence, there are some options but none of them are really good scenarios. Marshall Newhouse could move to the left tackle position he held last year and let David Bakhtiari and Don Barclay battle it out for the right tackle job.  They could also try Bakhtiari at left tackle and keep Barclay on the right.   With Barclay entering his second year and Bakhtiari a rookie, neither of these situations are ideal.

Part of the Packers’ reasoning for shuffling the offensive line this offseason was to shore up protection of Aaron Rodgers’ blind side. That meant moving Bulaga to left tackle, which is where he played in college.  Unfortunately, it looks like he may have to wait to play that position at the professional level.

For now, it will be a waiting game until official word on Bulaga comes down. Coach Mike McCarthy made no mention of this after Saturday’s scrimmage so everyone is truly in the dark for the time being.

If the report is true then the Packers may be in for another battle with the injury bug in 2013.  After injuries decimated the roster last season, this is not the news Packers fans have been waiting for.

Buckle up, Packer Nation. It may be yet another bumpy ride for the Green and Gold.

4

August

Surviving Sunday: News, Notes and Analysis from Packers Training Camp

Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football

Surviving Sundays with no Packers Football

Another week of Packers training camp is in the books. Is it Sept. 8 yet?

Finley pipes down
I’ve never been one of those people who gets all bent out of shape whenever Jermichael Finley says something that stirs the pot — I’ll take honesty and candor over canned cliches any day. But it looks like Finley is at least trying the cliche route…for now. Will a boring Finley in front of the microphones lead to a more exciting Finley on the football field? I don’t think one has anything to do with the other. If Finley becomes a force at tight end, it won’t be because he zipped his lips during training camp. Besides, if he does finally break out, people would probably be more tolerant of whatever does come out of his mouth.

Hawk OK with pay cut
Calling it “more of an ego thing than anything that guys can’t get over,” LB A.J. Hawk spoke about taking a pay cut this offseason in order to stay with the Packers. After the slash in pay, Hawk is due to make $10.6 million over the final three years of his deal. That sounds like more than enough money for a guy who rarely makes impactful plays. It’s good to hear Hawk speak openly about taking a cut and being a team guy, but deep down, even he has to know that there probably wasn’t another team out there that would be willing to pay him over $10 million. It’s still a great deal for Hawk, and the Packers obviously think it’s a fair price for a LB that hasn’t made many flash plays, but is healthy and ready to go every Sunday.

Bakhtiari making a move
We’ve been hearing nothing but good things about David Bakhtiari. There are even rumblings that he might end up winning the starting right tackle job. The rookie from Colorado appears to be plenty athletic to be the kind of pass protector the Packers like. And with Marshall Newhouse being, well, Marshall Newhouse, and Don Barclay horsing around at backup center, perhaps the window is open for the rookie to win the job. But remember: We haven’t made it to the first exhibition game yet. All rookies are getting loved up right now because they’re new, they’re fresh, their ceilings are perceived to be high and we don’t know their shortcomings yet.

4

August

It’s Time For The Packers To Part Ways With Mason Crosby

Mason Crosby may have just kicked himself out the door at 1265 Lombardi Avenue.

When the Green Bay Packers signed Giorgio Tavecchio to “compete” with Mason Crosby for the starting kicker job, Packers fans everywhere chuckled.

There was no way Tavecchio, an undrafted free agent in 2012 cut by the 49ers, would unseat Green Bay’s long-time incumbent kicker right? This was just a move by general manager Ted Thompson to appease those calling for Crosby’s head after a poor 2012. It had to be.

Well, that very well may have been Thompson’s mindset in March when Tavecchio was brought on board but it’s not anymore.  Thanks to a poor showing by Crosby in the team’s annual Family Night scrimmage (3-8 overall) and a solid night by Tavecchio (6-7 overall), the kicking competition is serious, and don’t call it Shirley.

Everyone hoped Crosby’s 2012 struggles were behind him and the early news from training camp looked promising.  Things went right back downhill during Family Night however and the frustrated look on Crosby’s face Saturday night didn’t exactly inspire confidence in the veteran.  It is clear Crosby’s confidence has been on thin ice since last season ended and it’s beginning to break before the first preseason game.

Further proof that the vultures may be circling over Crosby was the comment coach Mike McCarthy made about his kicker after the scrimmage. In short, he wasn’t pleased.  McCarthy said that Crosby “definitely didn’t take a step in the right direction” and that “he’s definitely got to do better than that because that’s not going to cut it.”

That’s quite the change from the defiant McCarthy who stood firmly behind his kicker last season despite some serious accuracy problems.

What did Crosby think of his performance? Well, he said he was “way past” his issues from last year and that he’s “just working on things.”  Not exactly a ringing self-endorsement. In Crosby’s defense, he did say he knows his performance in the scrimmage was “unacceptable and I have to do better.”

So where do (or should) the Packers go from here?

It’s time to cut the cord with Crosby.  With as much time between the end of last season and training camp, Crosby should have had enough time to exorcise the mental demons that were plaguing him in 2012 and come back strong in 2013.

6

August

Packers Family Night Faux Pas: Messing with Mason Crosby

Packers Kicker Mason Crosby

Why?

Packers kicker Mason Crosby was having a near-perfect camp. Everything was going swimmingly. I haven’t had to write about him or even so much as mention his name the past week. (Which is the way I like it).

Then the Packers decided to mess with a good thing on Family Night.

Under the guise of “getting used to the new stadium” (with the new south end zone construction), the Packers took the risk of overworking Crosby and messing up his mechanics with way too many 60 yard field goal attempts (four in a row at the end).

Crosby attempted eight straight field goals at the end of practice. here’s how they went:

37yds.   miss

37yds.   miss

53yds.   miss

56yds.   make

60yds.   miss

60yds.   make

62yds.   miss

65yds.   miss

My first question is why? Everyone (coaches, players and fans alike) knows that Crosby has more than enough leg to make long field goals. That has never been brought into question, even by this former critic of Crosby. Accuracy is another matter, of course. Over the course of his career, Crosby has hit 50% of field goal attempts over 50 yards. That’s not awful, nor is it great, but I’m not here to talk about that.

My purpose here is to ask why would the Packers risk Crosby getting hurt or messing up his mechanics by “showing off” in front of the home crowd? Having Crosby expend the extra energy needed to take those long kicks at a meaningless scrimmage is just dumb.   Once he made that 60 yard kick, wouldn’t it have made sense to end his night right then and there? Not to mention allowing Crosby to finish the night on a positive note, a night when he missed way too many kicks after being Mr. Automatic in camp.

My last question is, who’s idea was this? Was this something McCarthy or Slocum had planned? Was it something Crosby did spontaneously and no one stepped up to stop him? Either way, I didn’t like it at all and I don’t think it was a smart thing to do. The Packers need to protect an important asset like <cough> Mason Crosby <cough>.

Anyone else feel the same way?

 

5

August

Packers Video: Injured Marshall Newhouse Blown Up by Erik Walden

Marshall Newhouse Injured?

Just a quick clip for you all of the last play from scrimmage that Marshall Newhouse played in during the Packers’ Friday night Family Night Scrimmage. Towards the end of this clip, Newhouse is seen jogging to get in position for the next play.  Turns out, he stayed out there for a few Mason Crosby field goal tries (with no rush), and about ten minutes later, was seen walking off the field with the Packers trainers.

Newhouse didn’t appear to be limping at all as he walked off, so I thought I’d go back and see if I could tell where he got injured. After watching the last few series of the first-team offense, I wasn’t able to find any evidence of Newhouse suffering an injury. I did, however, find this interesting clip, which shows Erik Walden doing what he has been highly criticized for not doing, holding the edge against the run and keeping the back inside of him.

Newhouse does not appear to hurt himself on this play, so whatever injury he did incur, he was playing with at the time. All of this makes me hopeful that his injury is not serious. With the Packers perilously thin at the tackle position, let’s hope so. We should have more details after tonight’s practice.

 

 

——————

Follow Jersey Al:


                    Add to Circleson Google+

Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.

——————

4

August

Packers Video: 2012 Packers Family Night Scrimmage

Full video of the scrimmage portion of the 2012 Packers Family Night (no sound):

——————

Follow Jersey Al:


                    Add to Circleson Google+

Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.

——————

16

May

Packers Announce 2012 Family Night on August 3rd

Aaron Rodgers at Packers Family Night

Aaron Rodgers at Packers Family Night

Back for it’s twelfth year, the Packers’ Family Night festivities will take place on Friday, August 3rd, 2012. The festivities will include fun-filled activities for the kids,  the Packers intra-squad scrimmage, jersey give-aways and a fireworks show.

If the evening is anything like other recent Family Nights, rain may also be on the program. To that point, Packers president mark Murphy quipped, “We are guaranteeing good weather this year.”

Tickets will cost $10 and will go on sale at 9:00AM on June 25th. They can be purchased through Ticketmaster or in person at the Packers’ ticket office.  There is no ticket limit on purchases and special plans for groups of 50 or more are also available.

The festivities begin at 5:30PM, followed by practice drills at 6:30, the intra-squad scrimmage at 7:30 and finally the fireworks show to close out the evening.

For those unable to attend, the evening will be televised statewide by WLUK-TV FOX 11.

Full details can be found at Packers.com.

——————

Follow Jersey Al:


                    Add to Circleson Google+

Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.

——————