The second to last preseason game has traditionally been the big tuneup for the first team varsity squad going into the regular season. Let’s take a peek at what to keep an eye on for Week 3 of the preseason.
Keep Rodgers’s Jersey Clean
We saw enough against the Redskins. Rodgers and his receivers looked to be in midseason form already. Of course he will get some time against Denver, but only take the Ferrari out for a quick spin and park it back in the garage quickly.
Offensive Line Depth Already Hit
Bryan Bulaga limped off the practice field with an apparent ankle injury. Fortunately, the injury does not appear to jeopardize his availability for the season opener. Also, the guy filling in for him is not Jason Spriggs. Since Kyle Murphy is one of the few backup linemen who have shown something in the neighborhood of competence this preseason, the starting unit should hopefully keep playing effective ball. A year ago, the Packers had two Pro Bowl guards. How boring. Good thing they got rid of that non-problem…
Youngsters in the Secondary
Damarious Randall is back practicing. The player who knocked him into a concussive state apparently joked about setting up a GoFundMe account to pay for his fine. He quickly claimed it was a joke after Randall confronted him on social media and he received heat for complaining about funds as a professional athlete in 2017.
The Packers are being cautious with Josh Jones. With the splash he made in mini-camp after the draft, it almost seems like the team is trying to hide him under the radar, waiting to unleash the beast on the league once the regular season is here. Please, oh please let this be the case. Even if Jones rips up the league for his first two years then becomes human ala Clay Matthews, we’ll take it.
Josh “Little Sam Shields” Hawkins has another opportunity to build off a solid performance against the Redskins.
Kevin King continues to receive the reps he sorely needs after missing mini-camp time over absurd NFL/college semester rules not allowing him to participate in a real world job.
Kyler Fackrell: In one particular 1-on-1 practice drill, he was 0-24 at one point. His play on the field has been just as underwhelming. Would Ray Nitschke have turned out the way he did had his name been Kyler? The yuppie names of recent generations are starting to take their toll.
Jeff Janis: Mr. August is keeping his namesake. It’s a contract year. Hopefully he plays like it. If he focuses on route running like he does on buck hunting, he will contribute.
Ladarius Gunter: He shouldn’t be a bubble player, but apparently he is. He isn’t a top dog cover guy; we know that. With his baptism by fire the past two years, he undoubtedly offers value at secondary depth covering the 3rd or 4th receiver. In this day’s NFL, you can’t have enough depth at secondary.
Around the NFL
Colin Kaepernick: Twitter is trending with #ImwithKaep. He is certainly better than other QBs who have contracts in the league. From a business perspective, his potential suitors are turned off by the burden of attention he has chosen to bring to himself that is detrimental to a united environment that successful teams thrive in. The majority of professionals still believe in the concept of focusing strictly on the pursuits of what the team does on the field. Distractions are to be avoided for the common good. Kaepernick could have done everything and more than he has done off the field for what he believes in and had avoided this whole spectacle had he just stood for the national anthem. Whether he’s right or wrong, taking his personal beliefs into the workplace has been a questionable business decision. That’s how the real world works.
ESPN: A young Asian guy named Robert Lee was removed from announcing a football game in Charlottesville, Virginia. ESPN proposed this idea because of potential memes that people would forget about after 2 hours. Since then, Twitter users have found records of people named Joe Buck who fought in the Confederate Army……..
________________John Piotrowski is a UW-Eau Claire alum, spending most of his life in western WI. He makes the trek east to Lambeau whenever possible. Follow him on twitter at @piosGBP.