Notebook: Sherrod stays on roster after cutdown to 75 players

Aug. 27, 2012

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Offensive lineman Derek Sherrod is recovering from the broken lower right leg sustained last season and hasn’t passed his physical this year. Evan Siegle/Press-Gazette


The Packers haven’t given up on the possibility that tackle Derek Sherrod will return to the team early in the regular season.

Sherrod was not among the team’s 10 roster moves to get them to the NFL limit of 75 players by Monday afternoon, so he still counts on their roster while on the active physically unable to perform list. Among the 10 moves, though, the team placed starting linebacker Desmond Bishop on injured reserve, which means he’s out for the season.

Sherrod still is recovering from the broken lower right leg sustained last season and hasn’t passed his physical this year. The Packers could have moved him to the reserve/PUP list, as they did with two other players Monday, and then Sherrod no longer would have counted against the roster but also would not have been able to practice or play until after the sixth regular-season game.

This doesn’t mean Sherrod will be on the 53-man roster when final cuts are made by 8 p.m. Friday, because the Packers can put him on reserve/PUP then. But it gives them four more days to decide whether he can be ready to play as a backup in the season’s first few weeks.

The two players the Packers placed on reserve/PUP are outside linebacker Frank Zombo and tight end Andrew Quarless. They can’t play or practice for the first six weeks of the regular season, and thereafter the Packers will have up to six more weeks to put them on the 53-man roster, injured reserve or release them.

Bishop, who had surgery on a torn hamstring sustained in the preseason opener, was one of six players the Packers placed on injured reserve. The others were running back Du’ane Bennett, guard Ray Dominguez, tight end DeMarco Cosby, defensive end Johnny Jones and receiver Shaky Smithson. All aside from Bishop are candidates for injury settlements.

The Packers released defensive end Jarius Wynn and fullback Jon Hoese. Hoese was out because of a hamstring injury, so the Packers probably reached an injury settlement with him.

Quick hook for starters

Coach Mike McCarthy said Monday he’ll follow form from the last few years and play his starters only a few snaps in the preseason finale against Kansas City this week.

McCarthy said he won’t decide the playing rotations until after practice Tuesday, but most NFL teams play their starters only a series in the finale.

“We’ll play the starting group not very long and then we’ll evaluate everybody else,” McCarthy said.

McCarthy might have only two tight ends available Thursday night: starter Jermichael Finley and deep backup Brandon Bostick. Three other tight ends didn’t practice Sunday and Monday because of injuries: D.J. Williams (ankle), Tom Crabtree, (shoulder) and Ryan Taylor (chest).

“We’re preparing to play the game with the people who are healthy,” McCarthy said. “That’s the case every week and hopefully maybe a couple of those guys will be ready come Thursday. We still have some time. Both Tom and Ryan are day to day, so we’ll see what happens.”

Rodgers backing up

The Packers’ practice Monday provided a rare, probably one-week-a-year sight: Aaron Rodgers quarterbacking the scout team.

Normally in training camp, Rodgers takes a large majority of snaps when the Packers run their offense, though the backup quarterbacks rotate in as well. During the regular season, Rodgers gets all but a few snaps when the Packers run their offense in game-planning periods, and even in the limited game-planning drills for the first three preseason games, when he plays anywhere from one to two quarters, Rodgers takes snaps only with the starters.

However, for the preseason finale, when the starters are likely to play only one series, the roles of the starters and backups flip flop on both sides of the ball. So backup quarterbacks Graham Harrell and B.J. Coleman, along with the backups on offense, took almost all the snaps in the offensive game-planning periods Monday. In defensive game-planning periods, the backups on that side of the ball did the same.

That made Rodgers and the No. 1 offense the scout team for the Packers’ defense, and the usual starters on defense the scout team against Harrell and Coleman and the rest of the backups on offense.

For his first three years in the NFL, Rodgers backed up Brett Favre and thus ran the scout-team offense in practice every day.

“I love doing those reps,” Rodgers said after practice. “Takes me back to the old days with (former receiver) Ruvell (Martin) and those guys. It’s a lot of fun.”

Extra points

• McCarthy on the Seattle Seahawks announcing that rookie Russell Wilson, not former Packers backup Matt Flynn, will be their starting quarterback in the regular-season opener: “I saw that in the cafeteria, I saw Aaron (Rodgers) and Graham (Harrell) sitting there watching TV. I don’t really know the particulars of that. I know Russell is a fine young prospect coming out of Wisconsin. I know everybody appreciated him for everything he did for the Badgers, and where he was drafted and having a personal relationship with (Seahawks GM) John Schneider, seeing him this summer, I know John was excited about both Matt and Russell coming out of the off-season program. Matt’s a fine quarterback. This is part of his path. You always wish your guys well, even when they leave here. So, I’m sure it will work out.”

• Rodgers planned a five-minute weekly press conference Monday but ended it after only a minute when fullback John Kuhn pushed a shaving-cream pie in his face.

Rodgers didn’t appear happy about the incident and abruptly ended the press conference, which he was holding in front of his locker, so he could take a shower. Shaving cream in the face is more common in professional baseball than football.

Rodgers’ locker is next to an opening in the locker room, so Kuhn was able to come at Rodgers from behind a wall. Rodgers was surrounded by print, TV and radio reporters, and had no way of seeing Kuhn coming. The shaving cream wasn’t actually in a pie tin but was on a towel.

-- Pete Dougherty,

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