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Titans Game To Help Determine Opening Day Starters


Several Green Bay Packers will use Thursday night's game against the Tennessee Titans to improve their chances of securing a roster spot or landing a starting position.

"This last game is always critical," general manager Ted Thompson said. "We're closer to the season, and people have a shorter memory and they remember what you've done lately."

The Packers have not yet announced their starting guards. During Wednesday's walk-through practice, Scott Wells started the majority of time at left guard while William Whitticker started at right guard.

Wells and Adrian Klemm will rotate at left guard from series to series during the first half. In the second half, Klemm will start the third quarter and Wells the fourth.

"It's an opportunity to show I can play my position. That's the way I'm approaching it," Wells said. "It's important not to put the stress of battling for a starting position in my mind."

Running back Ahman Green has locked up the starting position but has missed the last two days of practice for personal reasons. He accompanied the team to Nashville, but the coaching staff has not announced if he will play.

After initially saying he wanted to play the entire first half, Favre, preoccupied with the devestation Hurricane Katrina has caused his family, may not receive any snaps.

Favre and head coach Mike Sherman planned to discuss the matter during Wednesday's airplane trip.

"It's still up in the air," offensive coordinator Tom Rossley said.

If Favre does play, rookie Aaron Rodgers will follow him in his effort to secure the No. 2 quarterback position.

Rodgers has impressed observers during training camp but struggled against live competition during preseason games. He, however, had his best game against the Patriots, completing 5-of-9 passes for 52 yards and an interception.

Because he did not play last week, Craig Nall will receive plenty of action after Rodgers. Rossley did not address if and when quarterback J.T. O'Sullivan will play.

Tight end Bubba Franks will see his first action in a preseason game this season but attributes his offseason running work to his game-ready conditioning.

"I haven't missed a beat at this point," he said.

The six-year-veteran does not know how much he will play but feels prepared for the regular season.

"I'm ready now, but they probably want to see me in some gametime action," Franks said. "As far as I see it, I don't really need a lot."

Defensive end R-Kal Truluck ran with the second team for the last two weeks until Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila suffered a neck stinger against the New England Patriots. KGB will return to action versus the Detroit Lions on Sept. 11.

During his extended time replacing KGB, Truluck will focus on improving his consistency and timing. The pass-rushing specialist said he wants to play into the third or fourth quarter.

"Starting is great, and that's what I'm here to do," Truluck said. "My biggest thing is I'm very excited about the opportunity to play more."

Fighting for starting positions is easier than trying to secure a spot on the team. Just ask Wells, who has gone from the latter to the former. As a seventh round draft pick last year, he battled every day just to land a spot on the roster.

"I'm not as focused on having to make the team," he said. "This year I'm more relaxed."


With the preseason winding down, here are some memorable sights and sounds from training camp ...

Best Of Training Camp: Rookie safety drilled running back Chris Robertson, forcing him to fumble. The play caused Excitable defensive coordinator Jim Bates to jump put an arm around Collins' shoulder pad and scream: "Get this guy a drink of water! Get this guy a drink of water!" ... Kicker Ryan Longwell served as de-facto babysitter for the Ball Kid of the Day. ... Favre raced Driver to team drills and bumped him along the way so he could win. ... After a brief training camp skirmish involving a few players, quarterback Brett Favre pretended to shadow box on the other side of the field. ... Offensive line coach Larry Beightol and veteran center and leader of the offensive line Mike Flanagan rode a golf cart together each day from one side of the practice field to the other. ... After Donald Driver scored a touchdown in practice, wide receiver Javon Walker pretended to snap a picture as Driver struck various poses. ... Bates wore a jacket or sweatshirt despite low-90s temperatures during afternoon practices. ... The always-amusing Beightol on the offensive line scheme: "This isn't brain surgery, believe me. It's not rocket science. We're not repairing the damn space shuttle."

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