Packersnews.com's Aaron Nagler talks Packers training camp in a Facebook Live chat with our followers.
Quietly, wide receiver Geronimo Allison has pushed his way into contention for considerable playing time. Allison, who was a string bean coming out of Illinois last year, has increased his weight from 196 to 202 pounds and with it has come a noticeable increase in strength. Last year, Allison worked his way from the practice squad onto the 53-man roster and into a supplementary role down the stretch. His position on the depth chart hasn’t changed; he’s still No. 4 in the pecking order, but watching him in practice Tuesday it’s obvious he’s going to draw throws from quarterback Aaron Rodgers. In the one-on-ones, he leaped high over cornerback LaDarius Gunter to snare a fade route in the end zone. In the team drills, he made himself available to Rodgers several times, including once on a perfectly timed connection down the middle and once on a deep ball that cornerback Raysean Pringle made a nice play on. Allison has saved his best for the real action. Against Washington, he ran toward the sideline, caught a pass, turned up field, juked a pair of defenders and wound up with a 25-yard gain. “Just that route alone depicts a guy who was uncomfortable last year running that specific route and the patience you have to have to do that route,” receivers coach Luke Getsy said. “A year later you could see the development.”
Yes, the guard-center trio of Lane Taylor, Jahri Evans and Corey Linsley is solid and experienced. And it’s no shame to lose to them in the one-on-one pass-rush drill. But shouldn’t a defensive tackle beat them once in a while? It was like watching them hit a brick wall. Mike Daniels goes against Evans. Nothing doing. Kenny Clark faces Linsley. Stopped in his tracks. Christian Ringo lines up against Taylor. Can’t move him an inch. It wasn’t until Ricky Jean Francois beat rookie Kofi Amichia on the ninth turn that the defense won. Later, Taylor and Linsley took turns again – the 34-year-old Evans often gets held out after a turn or two – and once again, they gave up nothing. Daniels, who has battled Taylor all camp to no avail, makes his move inside but can’t dip under Taylor’s reach and gets directed away from the quarterback. Up comes Clark against Linsley again. He gets up field but Linsley controls him and scores the victory. If the Packers are going to have any kind of pass rush, they’re going to need to win some match-ups inside. On this particular day, they couldn’t come close against the interior of the starting offensive line.
Outside linebacker Jayrone Elliott left with an unspecified ailment. He returned late in the practice with his pads still on, but did not participate.
New to the list of players missing practice were: LB Derrick Mathews (concussion), LB Jordan Tripp (concussion), DE Dean Lowry (knee) and RB William Stanback (hamstring).
Returning to practice were WR Malachi Dupre, CB Damarious Randall, TE AaronPeck and RB Ty Montgomery.
Bits and pieces
» Rookie DE Montravius Adams, who has been out since having foot surgery the first week of training camp, hit the stationary blocking sled in pre-practice warm-ups, a sign he can put full weight on his foot.
» Wide receiver Trevor Davis, who muffed a punt against Washington, was stripped of the ball in the ball-security gantlet drill.
» Quarterback Aaron Rodgers connected with Davis on a post route that would have gone for a 65-yard touchdown. Rodgers put the ball out in front of Davis and let him use his speed to beat cornerback Lenzy Pipkins to it.
» Tackle Kyle Murphy got some work at right guard with the No. 1 offensive line. Murphy has played sparingly at guard this camp, but he has been taught the position.
» Randall and rookie Kevin King were the starting cornerbacks with the No. 1 defense. Quinten Rollins and Randall both played in the slot in the nickel package, sometimes with the other lined up outside.
Quote of the day
“They’re going through and learning the tricks of the trade, and it takes time. They’re both handling it well and they’re both growing in the position along with playing guard. It’s been a good opportunity for them to be able to show that they can play a couple positions. The next couple weeks are big.” – Offensive line coach James Campen on backup centers Lucas Patrick and Justin McCray.
The next public practice is Wednesday at noon. It is the second-to-last practice fans will be able to view during training camp. There is only one practice open next week.