Since James Campen became a Packers assistant coach in 2004, the team never has gone the first eight games of a season with the same starting offensive line. Until this year.
All five starters have played every offensive snap of the season: Marshall Newhouse at left tackle, T.J. Lang at left guard, Jeff Saturday at center, Josh Sitton at right guard and Bryan Bulaga at right tackle.
“You have to be a little bit lucky,” said Campen, the Packers’ offensive line coach, “but also if you’re doing things the right way you’re working hard and working to finish (plays), and you’re not standing around spectating – sometimes those (injury) things can happen, fluky things.
“As long as your feet are active and you’re active, the percentages and chances of getting hurt go way down in my opinion. We try to stress that, stay alive, keep going and be alive on the play.”
Lang has been playing the past few weeks with an elbow injury that has caused him to miss some practice time, and Bulaga has had a sore knee for much of the season.
“They’ve had their bumps and bruises,” Campen said, “but those guys don’t like missing practice and they certainly don’t like missing games.”
If the line can stay healthy all season, which is rare, then it could foster better chemistry late in the year, especially in the run game. The Packers rank No. 26 in the NFL in rushing yards per game and No. 27 in yards per carry.
“Certainly that should start showing its way a little bit,” Campen said.