Left guard starter Lane Taylor is being placed on the injured reserve with a bicep injury, according to Packers.com. He will be eligible to return in November. In a related move, the Packers also signed Adam Pankey from the Tennessee Titans practice squad. Pankey was waived by the Packers this past August. Elgton Jenkins, who seemed to perform well during the preseason, will be starting left guard in Taylor’s place.
Matt LaFleur made the announcement during a post-practice press interview:
LIVE: Hear from Coach LaFleur following Friday's practice 🎥 https://t.co/yxrXy5cwru
Here are LaFleur’s comments on Jenkins(transcribed by Madison.com):
“I just think it’s a matter of the competition. And until one guy really shows the other one up, we’re going to keep it competitive and we’re fully comfortable with that,” LaFleur had said Thursday. “I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing to have a guy take a breather, come back in. Then he’s fresh. It’s just like what you see defensively quite often with defensive linemen — they’ll rotate those guys in. So the defensive line might be fresh but your O-line’s not.”
Asked Friday what Jenkins had done to impress him against the Vikings, LaFleur replied, “He just did his job. Typically up front, unless a guy’s just road-grading somebody and pancaking him, you don’t want to notice those guys too much. And he did his job. I just think the effort and the intensity with which he played, and he just did an excellent job out there.”
Elgton Jenkins is a rookie out of Mississippi State that the Packers drafted with the 44th overall pick this year. Until now, he has been a backup to Taylor and was rotated in and out to gain some experience. Taylor, having missed only 3 games as a starter the past three seasons, was not expected to be replaced by Jenkins anytime soon going into the season. Our own Rob Born saw it coming though:
O-lineman Elgton Jenkins went from 0 to 18 offensive snaps over the two games – it’s just a matter of time before he replaces Lane Taylor as the starter.
With Jenkins starting, that puts two rookies as starters so far this season including Safety Darnell Savage.