To ensure he was as sharp as possible at the start of training camp, cornerback Davon House went to a defensive backs school in Phoenix between the end of offseason practices and the start of camp.
Among the participants at guru Will Sullivan's camp was perhaps the game's best cornerback, Darrelle Revis. And after working in that setting House, who historically has been a fast starter, is off to probably his best start yet.
House, a fourth-year pro, is working as the team's No. 3 outside cornerback and pushing for playing time at probably the Packers' deepest position. On Wednesday in the seconded padded practice of camp, he made one of his best plays so far during the two-minute drill when on a second-and-goal from the 1, he broke up a back-shoulder throw from Aaron Rodgers to Jordy Nelson in the end zone.
"Davon House is clearly having his best year here as a pro," coach Mike McCarthy said, "just what he's done in the offseason (practices), some of the things he's focused on, things he knew he could improve on. You saw that since April. He's a big, long, strong corner."
House visited Sullivan's camp on the recommendation of a friend in college football and liked it enough to stay 3 ½ weeks. There were about 10 to 12 NFL defensive backs practicing with him on any given day, and they went through two-a-day workouts, with weight-room work in the morning and on-field work in the afternoon. The most notable player there was Revis, who made an impression on House.
"Just how patient and how balanced he was, and how controlled he was," House said. "His confidence level was top notch. Kind of how you see (quarterback Aaron Rodgers) is so smooth and makes everything look so easy, that's how Revis was."
House nevertheless faces a difficult road to getting substantial playing time because of the players ahead of him. He plays only the outside cornerback position, not the nickel or dime slot spots, and ranks No. 3 behind starters Sam Shields and Tramon Williams.
House has played well enough to force his way into one of the No. 1 defense's specialty packages, the dime. In that personnel group so far in camp, he replaces Williams, who moves to one slot position. Shields stays as the other outside cornerback, Micah Hyde plays the other slot, and nickel cornerback Casey Hayward departs.
"How do I get on the field?" House said. "Make plays, catch picks."