Bakhtiari 'not concerned' he'll miss opener
Green Bay Packers left tackle David Bakhtiari doesn't know when he'll return to the practice field, but he's not worried about missing any regular-season games because of the knee injury that currently has him sidelined.
Bakhtiari has not practiced this week following the Packers' preseason opener at the New England Patriots on Aug. 13. He allowed two sacks in that game, and Bakhtiari said his knee was a reason he struggled.
"It doesn't feel like my normal knee," Bakhtiari said. "So we're taking the right precautions to make sure it gets back to feeling like my normal knee."
Bakhtiari, careful not to disclose anything beyond what coach Mike McCarthy has shared with reporters, would not go into detail about his knee injury. McCarthy said earlier this week Bakhtiari would be a "stretch" to play Sunday when the Packers travel to the Pittsburgh Steelers for their second preseason game.
Entering his third year, Bakhtiari has started all 35 games at left tackle in his career – counting playoffs. In his absence, Don Barlcay is expected to start at left tackle Sunday.
Bakhtiari batted away any doubt he might miss the Packers' regular-season opener Sept. 13 at the Chicago Bears.
"I'm not concerned," Bakhtiari said. "I don't think Coach McCarthy is. I don't think our strength staff is. We're just taking it whatever we need to do, moving forward with the necessary steps."
Fourth-year lineman Don Barclay has been working at left tackle with the starting offense in practice this week. Barclay, who missed last season because of a torn ACL, gave up a sack and was flagged once for holding in his first in-game action against New England last Thursday.
Although Barclay hasn’t started a game at left tackle since his days at West Virginia, offensive line coach James Campen is confident he’ll be able to handle the job if called upon against the Steelers.
“Let’s remember he’s one year removed from a bad injury,” Campen said. “Don Barclay is a guy who I have all the confidence in the world in. He’ll play much better than he did last week. He played better in the game in New England than he did the family night because there’s less reps. You didn’t see them all.
“Point being is Don Barclay is a pro and Donnie will perform well.”
-Wes Hodkiewicz contributed.