Training Camp Observations 8-22, Full Pads
Pro tip: If you’re new to training camp and want to know which end the majority of the action will be on, keep an eye out for the end zone that has the camera tower in it and sit closest to that side.
Tunnel of Finley
[intlink id="209" type="category"]Jermichael Finley[/intlink] is a beast. Finley always seems to be open and [intlink id="25" type="category"]Aaron Rodgers[/intlink] knows it, maybe to a fault. During practice today Finley caught three touchdowns and looked to be Rodgers first option on a majority of plays. He’s a matchup nightmare will often give Rodgers favorable pre-snap looks. I believe Finley’s dominance will go hand-in-hand with Rodgers’ tunnel vision towards him. It should be very interesting to see how the Packers’ offense operates with all the weapons it has this season.
Both special teams players enjoyed decent success Monday morning. [intlink id="152" type="category"]Mason Crosby[/intlink] was a perfect six-for-six, with his longest field goal being 50 yards. During kickoffs, Crosby was a little less impressive, only kicking the ball to the goal line or shorter. With a leg as large as his, it seems noteworthy that he isn’t putting it out of the back of the end zone given the current placement of kickoffs on the 35-yard line. [intlink id="791" type="category"]Tim Masthay[/intlink] also showed off his leg, providing a handful of quality kicks into a crosswind. It wasn’t a perfect day for punting though, as Tori Gurley snuck through and blocked one of Masthay’s kicks.
Don’t underestimate the farm boy
[intlink id="22" type="category"]Jordy Nelson[/intlink] has shown he can do it all in practice. Nelson can be a possession receiver, catching balls on comeback and crossing routes. Nelson can also be a big-play threat, showing he can take a slant or post route deep, as well as being the Packers’ best player down the sidelines. Finley definitely had the most eye-catching performance of the day, but Nelson showed his ability to be a player the Packers can use for any play or formation set. How often can teams get burnt from a heavy run-orientated formation with a one-man route by Nelson? Apparently they underestimate Nelson’s ability, as well.
- [intlink id="1613" type="category"]Derek Sherrod[/intlink] was held out of practice and [intlink id="583" type="category"]T.J. Lang[/intlink] started at left guard with [intlink id="1037" type="category"]Marshall Newhouse[/intlink] filling in for veteran [intlink id="225" type="category"]Chad Clifton[/intlink] much of the time at left tackle.
- A couple injured players returned. [intlink id="1038" type="category"]James Starks[/intlink], [intlink id="442" type="category"]Brandon Underwood[/intlink], and [intlink id="596" type="category"]Brett Swain[/intlink] all practiced on a limited basis.
- The offense ran a no-huddle drill in practice and was pretty effective moving the ball, but neither the first or second team scored.
- Vic So’oto is making a move up the depth chart. With Frank Zombo sidelined with a broken scapula, So’oto was on the second team unit at outside linebacker. So’oto was one of the interesting prospects coming into camp and he has been responding well, getting a quick sack on Monday.
- Kick return direction call-words? Lombardi and Reno for left and right.
- What did you do for your 21st birthday? If your name is [intlink id="1616" type="category"]Randall Cobb[/intlink], then you sat out of practice with a thigh bruise.