General Manager Ted Thompson didn't have a real specific update on wide receiver Donald Driver's status, but in this case, no news was probably good news.
Driver sprained his right foot in Thursday night's preseason loss to Jacksonville when he was tackled after a 12-yard reception in the second quarter. The team was hopeful after the game that the injury was not serious, and as another day passed that still appears to be the case.
"He was feeling better today, and the doctors are still fairly encouraged," Thompson said during his Friday press conference. "He's a remarkably tough professional football player that was also blessed with remarkable genetics, I think. I don't know how you can predict this, but we feel fairly good that he's going to be OK."
Thompson said the hope is that Driver will be recovered in time for the regular-season opener on Sept. 9 vs. Philadelphia, but he wasn't going to guarantee that. He did reiterate one thing Head Coach Mike McCarthy said Thursday night, which was that the team doctors don't consider it a Lisfranc injury, which was the type of mid-foot sprain that knocked both receiver Robert Ferguson and defensive tackle Kenderick Allen out for the bulk of last season.
"Fortunately, we think we dodged something here," Thompson said.
Driver has displayed the courage to play in pain at other times in his career, most recently last season, when he battled a sore shoulder for much of the second half of his Pro Bowl campaign. So as long as the injury isn't physically limiting, and the chances of it getting worse are minimal, Driver is the type of player who would make every effort to take the field for the opener.
"That's what we think will probably happen," Thompson said. "But you never know. That's what we're hoping for."
Thompson No. 3 QB, for now
With the release of second-year pro Ingle Martin, non-drafted rookie Paul Thompson is the team's third quarterback and will likely get a significant amount of playing time at Tennessee next Thursday.
That will still be a big game for Thompson, whose only game action thus far came last Saturday against Seattle. With the offensive personnel, and the playbook, limited by injuries in that stint, Thompson completed 5 of 10 passes for 49 yards. He was sacked once and threw two interceptions, both with the team in position to score.
"It will be big for me," Thompson said of the preseason finale. "Last week was pretty much my first live action, and there were a lot of things I could improve on. So I'm looking forward to doing that and making the coaches feel comfortable with their decision."
Thompson is also aware he's still auditioning against several dozen quarterbacks soon to be released by other teams for the Packers' No. 3 job, assuming the team keeps three signal callers.
"You can't get complacent, especially at this level, because you can get replaced any day of the week," he said. "I need to continue to improve, continue to better myself as a quarterback."
The coaching staff has seen considerable improvement thus far, especially considering Thompson went from being a backup quarterback at Oklahoma in 2003 to a wide receiver in 2005, and then back to quarterback in 2006. The Packers were one of the only teams willing to give Thompson a chance to make it in the NFL as a quarterback, and thus far it does appear to be his natural position.
"I like the way he carries himself in the huddle," GM Ted Thompson said. "He's got an air about him on the field. I think he likes to play the game. I watch players during practice to see how they kind of conduct themselves, and he's very intent on watching the other guys and seeing how they're doing it and studying defenses."
One more move
The Packers currently have 77 players on the roster, above the 75-man limit required by Tuesday afternoon. Swedish linebacker Carl-Johan Bjork will be on the practice squad and does not count toward the roster limit, so the Packers will make at least one more roster move prior to the preseason finale at Tennessee.