Training Camp Observations 7-31, Shells

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Morgan Burnett

Burnett is looking to get back in the starting lineup.

The most wonderful time of the year is finally back, Green Bay Packers football. It’s my pleasure to work with Total Packers again to bring you any training camp info that I can… but enough talk, let’s get down to it.

A reason to watch special teams
The answer? Packers second-round draft pick [intlink id=”1616″ type=”category”]Randall Cobb[/intlink]. This guy just looks like he gets it. I heard that he had some trouble fielding punts yesterday, but none of that was apparent today. He caught the ball with ease, is lightning quick and fearless. I enjoy seeing a returner that makes a cut and gets north-south in a hurry as well as a guy who isn’t afraid to take it right up the middle. Cobb does both of these things and early indications are that he at least looks the part. He also looks like he can produce big gains on offense with limited touches, as was evident when he made a move and blew past Clay Matthews on an end around. How many guys can the Packers load up with that have great hands and excel in running after the catch? Knowing that Cobb is the Packers fifth receiver shows how stacked the Packers are at the skill positions.

Another threat at tight end
The talk coming into the league’s training camps was how difficult it would be for the rookies to get caught up since the lockout cancelled all of the team’s normal offseason activities. Thankfully for the Packers, [intlink id=”1624″ type=”category”]D.J. Williams[/intlink] didn’t get the memo. Last year’s Mackey Award winner has come into training camp firing on all cylinders. I heard how great he showed in the first practice and I was blown away by the number of catches he made as well as his ability to get open. He also had one of the plays of the night with a one-armed snag of an overthrown ball on an out route to the sideline. Best yet, he didn’t just catch the ball, but instantly turned upfield transitioning seamlessly to a runner. We’ve thought in the past that keeping four tight ends was borderline crazy, but this year I can guarantee that it’s expected.

Burnett’s return
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of [intlink id=”525″ type=”category”]Charlie Peprah[/intlink] and the things he brings to the table, but Morgan Burnett has Pro Bowl safety written all over him. During safety drills he made a catch on a ball thrown high and to the sideline, extending his arms and coming down in time to drag his toes before landing out of bounds. I’ve been on the [intlink id=”1034″ type=”category”]Morgan Burnett[/intlink] bandwagon since he was drafted, but it’s evident that this guy has the range and ball skills to become a great player, potentially elite. The Packers may lose some physicality with Burnett over Peprah but the ability to create turnovers is what this defense really thrives on and Burnett could become a force in making game changing plays.

Odds and ends
Derek Sherrod was with the No. 1 unit at left guard. There were some great throws by the quarterbacks and some really awful ones with [intlink id=”84″ type=”category”]Matt Flynn[/intlink] being the biggest offender. [intlink id=”1042″ type=”category”]C.J. Wilson[/intlink] looked like he was injured by a kick to the calf, but he returned for team drills at the end. Newly re-signed fullback [intlink id=”251″ type=”category”]John Kuhn[/intlink] could be seen on the sidelines, as well as recent signees [intlink id=”152″ type=”category”]Mason Crosby[/intlink], [intlink id=”700″ type=”category”]Spencer Havner[/intlink], and [intlink id=”596″ type=”category”]Brett Swain[/intlink]. [intlink id=”1036″ type=”category”]Andrew Quarless[/intlink] was in shells, but did not take part in any team drills.

About The Author

Brady has lived in Green Bay for the majority of his life, mostly because the Packers also reside there. He decided to forgo city life and nice weather in favor of the smell of brats and the ramblings of a Packers armchair GM. To Brady, there is the big 3 -- Packers, beer, and more Packers.

9 Comments on "Training Camp Observations 7-31, Shells"

  1. TyKo Steamboat

    The only free agent move i would really like to see is Left Guard…Keep Sherrod a fresh, healthy back-up for one year (a luxury pick). I would love to of seen us pick-up a Robert Gallery. :/ T.J. Lang may not be starting material…so lets get a nasty o-lineman with an attitude that can open holes for James Starks and Alex Green.

  2. FrozenFanatic84

    I love how we have yet to even play a pre-season game and already columists are putting the Eagles in the Super Bowl…give me a break! I guess the Packers might as well just stay at home… most likely scenario is that Vick gets seriously injured mid-season and they are up shit creek with no paddle! GO PACK GO!!!

    • Abe Frohman

      Agreed Completely! Philly’s OLine sucks, and their linebackers are pretty darn weak (Casey Matthews is already penciled in as the starter in the middle). As stacked as they may be on the DLine and the secondary, I still don’t see a guy on their roster that could cover Finley without a LOT of help. So, that will create opportunities.

      Heard on NFL radio this am that Reid has three years left on his contract, which means he has two years to win the super bowl, or be fired. They’ve NEVER extended guys past the age of 30 since he’s been there and they just signed 3 of them in Babin, Asomugha, and Jenkins. So, they’re going all in to win now.

    • brady

      Hard to make any real judgements on Saine so far as he is currently behind Grant, Starks, Green, and Nance in the rotation. Given the transgressions against OSU recently, it has been fun to joke about Saine taking a “pay cut” and coming to the NFL. Full pads begin today and we should be able to get a better idea of whether he can make an impact, though I feel as if it would be a longshot to crack the top 3. Still a long way to go.

  3. chris k

    Shoot we may keep 5 TE’s! If Ryan Taylor plays well and Quarless comes back with his head out of his ass…
    Or Quarless could get pushed out with roster crunches being that he doesn’t play ST’s well.

    Heard Brandon Saine has made a few impressive runs btw..

    • Brady

      Jennings, Driver, Nelson, Jones, Cobb. Though I’m sure that the argument could be made that Nelson and Jones are co-#3’s and their playing time is purely situational. If Cobb continues to light it up then who knows… It almost seems like Finley is our true #1 and we have 5 #2’s to go with him. “Stacked” is an understatement.

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