On Now
Coming Up
  • Sat., May. 02, 2015 11:00 AM - 8:00 PM CDT Packers' 2015 NFL Draft Party Evolution is located at 233 E. Chicago St., Milwaukee, Wis. Event parking is available in the parking structure next door (225 E. Chicago St.), where full day parking passes will be $10.
  • Sun., May. 03, 2015 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM CDT Jared Abbrederis appearance

    Staff Appreciation Week

  • Tue., May. 26, 2015 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM CDT Green Bay Packers Blood Drive

    Green Bay Packers Blood Drive

    Sponsor code – Packers

  • Sun., May. 31, 2015 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM CDT Packers Coaching School

    The Green Bay Packers are set to host the team’s second annual “Green Bay Packers Coaching School” at Lambeau Field on Sunday, May 31, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

    The complimentary coaching school has a curriculum exclusively designed for youth football coaches, and can accommodate a maximum of 300 coaches. The event will feature innovative classroom sessions in the Lambeau Field Atrium, as well as on-field football instruction from top local high school and youth football coaches in the Don Hutson Center.

  • Sat., Jun. 06, 2015 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM CDT Junior Power Pack Kids Clinic The 18th annual Junior Power Pack Kids Clinic is set for Saturday, June 6, inside the Don Hutson Center, the Packers’ indoor practice facility.
  • Sat., Jun. 20, 2015 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM CDT Jared Abbrederis appearance 11th Annual Youth Football Golf Outing

News

Print
RSS

Other Rodgers from Cal likes Packers offense, too

Posted May 20, 2014

Third-round pick happy to be playing tight end again

GREEN BAY—A year ago at this time, Richard Rodgers was in the process of losing 30 pounds so he could play wide receiver.

This past weekend at rookie orientation in Green Bay, he was glad to be back at his old gig.

“I like playing tight end,” said Rodgers, whom the Packers drafted in the third round out of California. “I missed it last year when I was playing receiver. I realized how much I liked blocking in-line and being closer to people and not being out in space and blocking little guys.”

Rodgers didn’t exactly enjoy becoming a “little guy” last year, but he did so at the behest of Cal’s new coaching staff so he could play. He wasn’t given a choice.

Getting back up into the 260-pound neighborhood has made him feel more like himself, and seeing on the Packers’ offensive film last weekend the many ways tight ends are used in Mike McCarthy’s system has him fired up about what lies ahead.

“They flex them out, sometimes they keep them in the backfield, they do everything pretty much,” Rodgers said. “It’s a lot of learning, but you have to be willing to do that.”

Rodgers is willing, and in a perfect world, he’ll be able to combine his earlier college experience as a tight end with his exposure to playing receiver to become the hybrid, multi-use weapon regularly featured in Green Bay’s offense.

It will be a process, though, and that process for Rodgers starts with re-learning all the fundamentals that applied to his first two seasons in college as more of a pure tight end.

“I just need to work on a lot of things, a lot of little things,” he said. “Whatever I can take technically from the coaches – getting your first step in the ground, your second step, making contact, helmet placement, things like that – just the little things help you playing tight end.

“It’s a little bit like starting over.”

Depending on what happens with Jermichael Finley, the Packers could be close to starting over at the position soon enough.

Veteran Andrew Quarless was re-signed and special-teams ace Ryan Taylor is back, but the long-term future at tight end could depend on developmental prospects such as Rodgers.

Brandon Bostick and Jake Stoneburner return after seeing their first pro action last year, while Rodgers joins the newcomers, who include undrafted rookies Justin Perillo and Colt Lyerla. An intriguing athlete and pass-catcher, Lyerla was signed following a rookie weekend tryout after being passed over during the draft and rookie free agency due to various off-the-field issues. Based solely on football talent, he likely would have been drafted well ahead of Rodgers, who went 98th overall.

Given the investment the Packers made in him, Rodgers will be squarely in the mix as the depth chart gets sorted out through OTAs and training camp.

He’ll get to catch passes for the first time from his namesake from Cal and talk again about his dad’s involvement in “The Play” from the 1982 Cal-Stanford game, but none of that will alter his focus.

He’s here to grow back into his old self, at his old job, and see how he fits in this offense.

“That excites me,” he said. “I want to learn as much as I can about the game. I think the coaches here do a great job teaching, and I love it here.”

Another draft pick feature:

 
blog comments powered by Disqus

You May Also Be Interested in...

Recent Videos

  • Prospect Primer: DT Christian Covington, Rice

    (2:23) Posted 6 hours ago

    Packers.com presents 'Prospect Primer,' a video look at an assortment of draft-eligible players who attended the scouting combine in Indianapolis. Rice DT Christian Covington had four sacks among 11 ½ tackles for loss as a first-team All-Conference USA selection in 2013, his last full season after a knee injury cost him most of 2014.

  • Prospect Primer: C B.J. Finney, Kansas State

    (2:10) Posted 6 hours ago

    Packers.com presents 'Prospect Primer,' a video look at an assortment of draft-eligible players who attended the scouting combine in Indianapolis. Kansas State C B.J. Finney started 52 consecutive games in college, the last 51 at center, and was voted a team captain three times.

  • Prospect Primer: TE Blake Bell, Oklahoma

    (1:45) Posted Apr 24, 2015

    Packers.com presents 'Prospect Primer,' a video look at an assortment of draft-eligible players who attended the scouting combine in Indianapolis. Oklahoma TE Blake Bell played just one season at tight end after converting from quarterback, catching 16 passes for 214 yards and four touchdowns.