Packers practice report: Life without the QB

August, 20, 2013
8/20/13
7:45
PM ET
GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Green Bay Packers got a glimpse of what life would be like without Aaron Rodgers.

And it wasn’t pretty.

With their starting quarterback at home nursing a head cold, coach Mike McCarthy on Tuesday put the offense in the hands of backups Graham Harrell and Vince Young while B.J. Coleman once again ran the scout team.

Harrell and Young each made a handful of plays that made them look capable of running the offense, but more often they were inconsistent.

In a non-pads practice, Harrell got the bulk of the snaps with the starters, including a lengthy no-huddle period. As usual, he looked fine on the short-to-intermediate throws, but the difference between him and Rodgers was evident on the deep balls.

[+] EnlargeGraham Harrell
AP Photo/G. Newman LowranceWith starting QB Aaron Rodgers out of action, Graham Harrell got most of the snaps with the Packers' first-team offense Tuesday.
During that no-huddle period, Harrell had receiver Jarrett Boykin open down the right sideline but sailed the ball over his head. Six plays later, Harrell overthrew receiver Tyrone Walker, who had a step or two on the nearest defender.

Harrell also threw an interception in the red zone when linebacker Terrell Manning stepped in front of a dump-off pass to running back Johnathan Franklin.

“It’s always good to get in there with (the starters),” Harrell said. “I missed some balls, but you’ve just got to go in there and no matter when it is or who you’re in there with, you’ve just got to make the most of your reps.”

Young, who is in his third week since signing with the Packers, took a few snaps with the starters but worked mostly with the No. 2 offense.

“There were some rough plays there,” McCarthy said, “but that’s why we watch the tape. … I’m curious to watch it.”

In other developments from Tuesday’s practice:
  • It’s starting to look more and more like DuJuan Harris and Eddie Lacy will be a one-two punch in the running game. For the second consecutive day, they took the first two reps of each team period with the starters, followed by rookie Franklin and then veterans Alex Green and James Starks.
  • Rookie linebacker Sam Barrington, a seventh-round pick, has shown up on more of the top special-teams units of late. On Tuesday, he was on the No. 1 kickoff-return and No. 1 punt-return teams.
  • Without pads on Monday and Tuesday, there have not been any one-on-one pass-rushing/pass-blocking drills since last Wednesday.
  • With temperatures in the mid-to-upper 80s, it was one of the hottest practices of camp so far. Said McCarthy: “The only game I’m concerned about weather-wise is probably (at) Cincinnati (in Week 3). Now that I’ve said that, it’s probably going to be hot as hell against San Francisco and Washington, but you can’t really plan for that. But it’s good to get in the heat.”
Medical report: Other than Rodgers, the only other new injury was to cornerback Loyce Means (ankle).

Cornerback James Nixon tried to return from the ankle and knee injuries he sustained Saturday at St. Louis but couldn’t make it through practice.

Others who missed practice were WR Charles Johnson (knee), WR Randall Cobb (biceps), S Sean Richardson (neck), CB Tramon Williams (knee), OL J.C. Tretter (ankle), T Bryan Bulaga (knee), T Derek Sherrod (leg), TE Matthew Mulligan (elbow), WR Jordy Nelson (knee) and DE Jerel Worthy (knee).

What’s next: The only full-pads practice of the week is scheduled for Wednesday at 11 a.m.

Rob Demovsky

ESPN Green Bay Packers reporter

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