NFL Nation: Garth Gerhart

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- For the first time all season, the Green Bay Packers will have all three quarterbacks active.

The reason?

Aaron Rodgers' calf injury.

According to a source, the Packers are going into Sunday's game against the Detroit Lions with "a little" concern about the injury their starting quarterback sustained in last week's win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

On Friday, Packers coach Mike McCarthy said during his final media availability of the week: "I don't have any concerns today, just based off of the conversation with Aaron and how he's feeling."

However, the Packers still had one more practice Saturday morning to complete their preparations for the NFC North title game against the Lions. Rodgers was listed as probable on Friday's injury report and was a limited participant in practice all week.

Rodgers also took the unusual step of warming up on the field about two hours before the game Sunday. Rodgers does not typically come out that early, but he played catch with backup Matt Flynn.


This is the first time No. 3 quarterback Scott Tolzien has been active for a game this season. He took the place of backup running back DuJuan Harris, who has been the primary kickoff returner this season. However, McCarthy said this week that he's looking for a spark in the return game, which could mean he will use starting receiver Randall Cobb in that role.

Here's the Packers’ inactive list for Sunday:

Packers' starting O-line intact vs. Bucs

December, 21, 2014
12/21/14
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TAMPA, Fla. -- For the 14th time in 15 games this season, the Green Bay Packers will have their preferred starting offensive line intact to begin a game.

That was assured when right tackle Bryan Bulaga was cleared to return from the concussion he sustained last Sunday at the Buffalo Bills. Bulaga, who was upgraded from questionable to probable on Saturday, will start Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Bulaga is the only starter on the offensive line to miss a game this season. The Packers played without him in Week 2 against the New York Jets because of the knee injury he sustained in the season opener. Since he returned in Week 3 against the Detroit Lions, the Packers have started the same five offensive linemen in every game.

"This is the best offensive line we've had in my time here," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said this week. "We felt that coming out in the spring. All the good teams, all the good offensive, defensive, special-team units and particular positions are the ones that practice together and play together each and every week are always the best ones. This is a very cohesive offensive line, both on and off the field. They get along. It's a smart bunch. They help each other."

There was only one injured player, cornerback Davon House (shoulder), among the Packers' inactives. Here's the full list:
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- The issue wasn't necessarily whether Eddie Lacy would be active -- that seemed like a safe bet after what coach Mike McCarthy said Friday -- but rather how effective the banged-up Green Bay Packers running back can be Sunday against the Buffalo Bills.

Lacy was indeed declared active. The Packers announced no starting lineup changes, which means they're planning to go with Lacy from the start after he was limited all week in practice because of the hip injury he sustained in the fourth quarter of Monday night's game against the Atlanta Falcons. Lacy could not finish that game.

Still, it might not be reasonable to expect Lacy to play the workhorse role against the Bills. And he might not need to after the performance James Starks put together against the Falcons. Starks matched his career-long run of 41 yards and finished with a season-high 75 yards on 10 carries.

"We'll see how the game goes, but I feel very comfortable going with Eddie and James," McCarthy said Friday.

Safety Chris Banjo, who was promoted from the practice squad Saturday after linebacker Jamari Lattimore was placed on injured reserve because of an ankle injury, also is active Sunday. Banjo played in all 16 games last season, mostly on special teams.

The only injured Packers player on the inactive list was cornerback Davon House (shoulder). The rest were healthy scratches.

Here's the full inactive list for the Packers:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers' secondary will be at full strength for "Monday Night Football."

Shields
Cornerback Sam Shields passed the concussion protocol and will play against the Atlanta Falcons at Lambeau Field.

Shields, who sustained a concussion early in last Sunday's game against the New England Patriots, did not practice all week but on Saturday coach Mike McCarthy seemed optimistic that Shields had a chance to be cleared.

The Packers made a roster move on Monday, when they placed defensive tackle Luther Robinson on injured reserve and signed defensive tackle Bruce Gaston. However, Gaston, a rookie from Purdue who was signed off the Arizona Cardinals' practice squad, was declared inactive.

Here's the full inactive list for the Packers:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers' defense will be back at full strength for Sunday's showdown with the New England Patriots.

And they'll also have their top special teams player.

Bush
Perry
Outside linebacker Nick Perry (shoulder) and core special teamer Jarrett Bush (groin) are both active after missing last Sunday's game at the Minnesota Vikings.

Perry moved into the starting right outside linebacker position when Clay Matthews moved to the inside spot following the Packers' bye in Week 9. Mike Neal started at outside linebacker against the Vikings, but Perry is expected to return to that role.

Both Perry and Bush were listed as questionable on Friday's injury report.

Receiver Davante Adams, who was added to the injury report on Thursday after he got his heel stepped on in practice, also is active.

All seven of the Packers' inactives were healthy scratches.

Here's the full list:
MINNEAPOLIS -- If the Green Bay Packers still plan to use Clay Matthews at inside linebacker as extensively as they have the previous two games, they will need to find another option at his old outside linebacker spot.

Nick Perry, who started the last two weeks at right outside linebacker, was declared inactive for Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings. Perry was listed as questionable because of a shoulder injury.

Mike Neal would be the logical choice to assume those outside linebacker snaps, but rookie Jayrone Elliott also sees some action there.

Matthews has played the majority of his snaps the last two weeks at inside linebacker, especially on early downs, but it's possible he could go back to playing more at outside linebacker.

On Friday, coach Mike McCarthy said they would have to adjust their plan if Perry could not play.

The Packers also will be without one of their key special-teams players, cornerback Jarrett Bush (groin). In his place, rookie cornerback Demetri Goodson was activated for just the second time this season.

Here's the full inactive list:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers won't have to play without both of their starting cornerbacks Sunday against the Carolina Panthers because Tramon Williams was declared active.

That was in question all week after Williams sprained his ankle last Sunday against the Miami Dolphins. And when fellow starting cornerback Sam Shields (knee) was declared out on Friday, the Packers faced the possibility of starting a pair of backup cornerbacks against Cam Newton and Co.

On Friday, Packers coach Mike McCarthy listed Williams as questionable but said he would give his veteran cornerback every chance to play.

Williams, who has missed only one game in his eight-year NFL career, took part in Saturday's practice -- his first on-field work of the week -- on a limited basis and did not experience any setbacks.

Linebacker Jamari Lattimore (neck), who also was listed as questionable, will play and is expected to start.

Davon House will start at Shields' right cornerback spot, and Casey Hayward is expected to be the third cornerback in the nickel package.

Receiver Jarrett Boykin is active after missing the last three games because of a groin injury.

Here's the Packers' full inactives list:

Packers will be without Datone Jones

October, 12, 2014
10/12/14
12:15
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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. -- Late last week, Datone Jones was optimistic about his chances of playing in Sunday's game at the Miami Dolphins, but the ankle injury the Green Bay Packers defensive end sustained 10 days ago against the Minnesota Vikings apparently did not allow for that.

Jones was among the Packers' seven inactives.

It's unclear whether Jones took part in the Packers' light practice Saturday, but on Friday -- a day the Packers did not practice -- coach Mike McCarthy said: "I would hope if we were practicing today, he would've been out there in some form or fashion."

Second-year pro Josh Boyd, who missed the Vikings game because of a knee injury, will start in Jones' place, but it also could mean another sizeable role for Luther Robinson, who was promoted from the practice squad the day of the Vikings game and played 35 snaps.

Receiver Kevin Dorsey, who was promoted from the practice Monday, is active.

There were no other surprises among the inactives.

Here's the full list:
CHICAGO -- The Green Bay Packers have not gotten much production from their No. 3 receiver so far this season, so perhaps it isn't a huge issue that Jarrett Boykin won't play Sunday against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.

He was declared inactive after sustaining a groin injury in practice last week. He had already been listed on the injury with a knee injury.

Boykin has only two catches for 17 yards this season while splitting time with rookie Davante Adams (seven catches for 61 yards). The Packers have used their three-receiver set more than any other personnel group this season.

But Boykin being declared inactive has opened the door for another rookie receiver, Jeff Janis, to get his first shot. The seventh-round pick from Saginaw Valley State was declared active for the first time Sunday.

There were no other surprises on the Packers' inactive list, which featured just six players because they remain one short on their 53-man roster.

Here's the full list of Packers inactives:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- It looks like it will be at least eight weeks before JC Tretter sees the field for the Green Bay Packers.

The team is expected to use its one-and-only spot on the injured reserve/designated to return list on the player who was supposed to be its opening-day starting center.

Tretter
"The timeline is such that it would make sense to designate him for return," Tretter's agent, Alan Herman, said Tuesday.

Tuesday was the first day teams could use that designation on a player, and it would not show up on the NFL's official transactions until Wednesday. Herman said late Tuesday afternoon he had not been told the move had been made yet.

Tretter sustained a fracture to his left knee during the Packers' Aug. 22 preseason game against the Oakland Raiders.

Herman originally said Tretter's injury, which does not require surgery, should heal in six weeks. That coincides roughly with when Tretter could return to practice under the temporary IR rules, which allow a player to practice after six weeks and play after eight.

If the move is made this week as expected, the first game Tretter could return for is Nov. 9 against the Chicago Bears. It comes a week after the Packers' bye.

The Packers used the injured reserve/designated to return on Randall Cobb last season after the receiver broke his tibia in Week 6 against the Baltimore Ravens. Cobb could have returned in Week 15 but did not come back until the regular-season finale against the Bears.

The move allows the Packers to use Tretter's roster spot on another player, but unlike the regular injured reserve list, Tretter can return later in the season. The most likely candidate for that roster spot is practice-squad center Garth Gerhart.

Rookie fifth-round pick Corey Linsley, who did not take a single snap with quarterback Aaron Rodgers in the preseason, will start in Tretter's place. At this point, the Packers have only seven healthy offensive linemen on their roster.

W2W4: Packers' Family Night

August, 2, 2014
8/02/14
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GREEN BAY, Wis. – From a pure football standpoint (forget about the fireworks and the jersey giveaways) the best thing about the Green Bay Packers' Family Night was always the fact that it featured the first live tackling (except of the quarterbacks, of course) of the summer.

But even that is no more.

Coach Mike McCarthy decided to ditch the scrimmage this year in favor of a regular training camp practice. Fans still ate up the $10 tickets, and Lambeau Field is sold out for tonight's event, which gets underway with pre-practice activities at 5:30 p.m., but it surely won't be the same.

"Just the way the whole schedule laid out for Mike and his staff, we just needed that day as a normal practice day to be able to get everything accomplished that we wanted to get accomplished," Packers general manager Ted Thompson said this week. "And quite frankly, I don't know that it'll look a whole lot different. We still have some really good fireworks, which is a big hit in the locker room and with all the kids and that sort of thing."

With that in mind, here are a few things to watch:

QB competition: The last time anyone saw Scott Tolzien at Lambeau Field, he was getting benched in favor of Matt Flynn during the Nov. 24 tie against the Minnesota Vikings. So far in camp, Flynn holds the edge over Tolzien for the backup job behind Aaron Rodgers, but how Tolzien performs from here on out will determine whether the Packers have a difficult decision to make when it comes to deciding how many quarterbacks to keep.

"Matt knows what he does well and plays to his strengths," quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt said Friday. "He's won games for the Packers. Scott, he's still trying to catch up and learn. Having a year in the system in the offseason has helped him tremendously, so he's coming along as well. Matt's done a great job, and I think Scott should be commended as well."

One-on-one reps: The most competitive drill in training camp is almost always the one-on-one pass-rushing/pass-blocking drill and given that they did not do the drill on Friday, there's a good chance they will do so tonight.

Here's a look at the best records in the drill so far:

Offensive linemen: T.J. Lang (4-0), Bryan Bulaga (6-1), Corey Linsley (6-1), David Bakhtiari (5-1), Derek Sherrod (5-1), JC Tretter (5-2), Garth Gerhart (5-2) and Don Barclay (5-3).

Pass-rushers: Mike Daniels (6-2), Datone Jones (6-4), Mike Neal (3-3), Julius Peppers (2-2), B.J. Raji (4-6).

Crosby's kicks: If there was a low point for Mason Crosby, it might have been on Family Night last year. Coming off his worst NFL season and locked in a kicking competition with Giorgio Tavecchio, Crosby missed five of his eight kicks in the scrimmage. He eventually steadied himself to reclaim the job and went on to his best season. He has carried that over into training camp, where in two kicking sessions so far he has made 14-of-16. Special-teams coach Shawn Slocum said Crosby will kick tonight, but it won't be as extensive as last year's session.

"Last year he was under a pretty intense competition," Slocum said. "He did well toward the end of it and had a good season and has come back this year, I really like where he's at. I think he's in a good place right now."

Wild-card performers: In Family Nights of the past, there have been players who have come out of relative obscurity to make themselves noticed. One of the unknowns who has already worked his way up the depth chart is rookie free-agent linebacker Joe Thomas of South Carolina State, and he likely will get more opportunities to show whether he can make enough plays to earn a roster spot.

"I think I've just done enough to get the attention of the coaches and better my chances of making the team," Thomas said. "I've got to continue to progress each day to keep catching the eye of the coaches."

Until preseason games begin next week, there's no better chance to do so than on Family Night.

Abbrederis injury update: You won't see rookie receiver Jared Abbrederis on the field (although he may be in attendance), but we should learn more about his knee injury.

Indications are that the fifth-round pick from Wisconsin sustained a torn ACL, although he was awaiting another round of tests to be sure. If those tests confirm such, he will need season-ending surgery.
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers continued to work with the backup centers during individual drills at Wednesday’s practice just like he did last week.

But unlike last week, he did more throwing on the run.

At one point, Rodgers scrambled to his left and threw a sharp pass to Jordy Nelson along the sideline. Rodgers said he experienced pain his collarbone after last Wednesday's workout, so how he feels after this latest session will help determine when he can return from his Nov. 4 injury.

While Rodgers worked with backup lineman J.C. Tretter and practice-squad lineman Garth Gerhart, Matt Flynn took snaps from starting center Evan Dietrich-Smith.

Running back Eddie Lacy, who finished Sunday’s win over the Atlanta Falcons after he sprained his right ankle in the second quarter, was not practicing during the portion that was open to reporters.

Others not practicing were: linebacker Jamari Lattimore (knee), linebacker Brad Jones (ankle), outside linebacker Mike Neal (abdomen) and defensive end C.J. Wilson (ankle).

Receiver Randall Cobb, who is eligible to come off the injured reserve-designated to return list this week, was not practicing. Cobb was scheduled to test his fractured tibia in a workout on Tuesday.
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Say this much about Aaron Rodgers: His broken collarbone doesn’t appear to have slowed down his fastball.

The Green Bay Packers quarterback took part in individual drills during the portion of Wednesday’s practice that was open to reporters. Just like he did last Tuesday, Rodgers took snaps from the backup centers. He threw mostly short- and intermediate-range passes, but they appeared to have his usual velocity.

Rodgers
Nevertheless, Rodgers still looks like a long shot to make his return on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons at Lambeau Field. The tests he underwent Tuesday did not show enough healing for team doctors to clear him to do anything more than some light practicing.

While Rodgers took snaps with practice-squad lineman Garth Gerhart and JC Tretter, who remain on the physically unable to perform list, Matt Flynn worked with starting center Evan Dietrich-Smith. Coach Mike McCarthy said Tuesday that Flynn would take the starter’s reps in practice.

Dietrich-Smith returned after dropping out of Thursday’s 40-10 loss at the Detroit Lions because of a knee injury. He appeared to put on a brace just before practice started.

Two players who were inactive against the Lions -- linebacker Jamari Lattimore (quad) and tight end Brandon Bostick (concussion) -- returned to practice.

Only two players did not practice. They were linebacker Mike Neal, who was listed on the injury report last week with an abdominal injury but played against the Lions; and defensive end C.J. Wilson, who was inactive because of an ankle injury.

The full injury report and comments from coach Mike McCarthy will be available after practice.
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Twenty-two days after he broke his collarbone, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers returned to the practice field on Tuesday.

Whether he plays on Thursday against the Detroit Lions is another story.

Rodgers
However, Rodgers was cleared by doctors to begin doing some on-field activities. Wearing the usual red quarterback jersey, Rodgers took part in all the individual drills during the portion open to the media. No team (11-on-11) periods were conducted during the open part of practice.

It’s worth noting that during a period in which the quarterbacks took snaps from center, Rodgers was working with practice squad offensive lineman Garth Gerhart. Matt Flynn, who finished Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings took snaps from starting center Evan Dietrich-Smith, while Scott Tolzien worked with guard T.J. Lang.

On Monday, coach Mike McCarthy said Rodgers’ chances of playing against the Lions were “slim to none.”

Among others who returned to practice on Tuesday were tackle Don Barclay (knee), cornerback Sam Shields (hamstring) and defensive tackle Johnny Jolly (groin). All missed Sunday’s game against the Vikings.

The full injury report, plus comments from McCarthy, will be available after practice.

Green Bay Packers cut-down analysis

August, 31, 2013
8/31/13
7:20
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Most significant move: After the Packers released Graham Harrell on Aug. 24, the backup quarterback job was Vince Young’s to lose. The former first-round draft pick on the Tennessee Titans lost it. After an unimpressive performance in the preseason finale at Kansas City on Thursday, when Young led only two field goal drives in 11 possessions, the Packers released him on Saturday.

Perhaps he was fighting a losing battle from the start, considering he wasn’t signed until Aug. 5. That was 11 days after the Packers opened training camp. He missed the first seven practices and a scrimmage.

It leaves an unsettled situation behind starter Aaron Rodgers. For now, the only other quarterback on the roster is B.J. Coleman, who spent all of last season on the practice squad. Coleman opened training camp as the No. 3 quarterback but slipped to fourth string after Young was signed and before Harrell was released. In the preseason, Coleman completed just 14 of 34 passes (41.2 percent) for 128 yards with one touchdown and one interception. It’s hard to imagine the Packers won’t explore other options over the weekend.

2011 revisited: With running back Alex Green and tight end D.J. Williams among the most surprising cuts on Saturday, it made a strong statement about the 2011 draft class. Packers general manager Ted Thompson drafted 10 players in April of that year. Only three of them – receiver Randall Cobb (second round), cornerback Davon House (fourth round) and tight end Ryan Taylor (seventh round) – remain on the roster. Tackle Derek Sherrod (first round) will start the season on the physically unable to perform list. He still has not returned from the broken leg he sustained on Dec. 18, 2011. Green was a third-round pick, while Williams was taken in the fifth round.

What’s next: Like all teams, the Packers will scour the waiver wire and free-agent lists. Their focus likely will be on the quarterbacks. Even if they find one they like, they might have to use Coleman as the No. 2 early in the season while the newcomer gets acclimated to the offense. The Packers haven’t carried three quarterbacks on their active roster since late in the 2011 season. They also can begin signing players to their eight-man practice squad on Sunday afternoon. Thompson is scheduled to meet with reporters on Sunday afternoon.

Players cut: QB: Vince Young. RB: Alex Green. FB: Jonathan Amosa. TE: Matthew Mulligan, Jake Stoneburner, D.J. Williams. WR: Charles Johnson, Tyrone Walker, Myles White. OL: Andrew Datko, Garth Gerhart, Kevin Hughes, Patrick Lewis. DL: Jordan Miller. LB: Terrell Manning, Dezman Moses, Donte Savage. CB: Loyce Means, Brandon Smith, James Nixon. S: David Fulton, Chaz Powell.

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