The Green Bay Packers kicked off a short week of practice, sandwiched between their preseason games Monday and Saturday night. The team returned to the field in full pads Wednesday afternoon for the first time since Monday's preseason opener.
An audience of about 900 fans lined the fences of Clarke Hinkle Field for the afternoon session as a strong wind blew through Green Bay.
The practice began with a 30-minute session of special teams work. Wide receiver Shockmain Davis had to be assisted off the field after getting tangled in a pile-up on a kickoff return about 20 minutes into practice. GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman said after practice that Davis had suffered a broken leg, and the second-year player will be out for the season.
As the Packers lost a player early in practice, another returned when the full team portion of the two hour and fifteen-minute practice got underway. Offensive tackle Brennan Curtin, who had been held out of the entire training camp to this point, dressed out for the first time this summer.
Carl Ford drew a cheer from the crowd during 1-on-1 receiver/defensive back drills, as he made a fine grab of a Craig Nall pass despite tight coverage from Al Harris.
In the first portion of full team drills, linebacker Torrance Marshall continued his fine training camp performance as he came around the end to sack quarterback Tim Couch.
Brett Favre again showed off his strong arm as he rolled to his right and fired a strike into the hands of Donald Driver 20 yards downfield.
Defensive tackle James Lee continued to impress as he backed up his fine showing Monday night with back-to-back plays Wednesday. First, Lee beat guard Steve Morley off the line and plunged into the backfield to "sack" Favre. On the next play, he displayed fine run defense as he slid along the line of scrimmage and tackled Walter Williams for no gain.
In 7-on-7 drills, Couch zipped a pass over the middle that connected with Kelvin Kight on a slant pattern. He then hit Reggie Love deep down the right sideline for a touchdown. The TD pass was called back, however, as the practice officiating crew deemed that Love had interfered with cornerback Joey Thomas in order to get to the ball.
Later in the drill, Thomas made a splendid effort to pick off a Couch pass, diving in front of Scottie Vines.
Curtin made a fine showing in his first one-on-one lineman drill, as he held off Larry Smith in the pass rush situational work. Corey Williams stuck up for the defenders, though, as he overpowered Joe Hayes and drove him back into the quarterback dummy.
A power running attack highlighted the final team portion of the afternoon's proceedings. Ahman Green ran hard up the middle on numerous occasions, leaving men in green jerseys in his wake as he broke towards the goal line. Najeh Davenport followed with strong steps of his own, running behind Marco Rivera's solid drive blocking.
The final play of the day belonged to the defense, though, as cornerback Jason Horton broke up a pass along the sideline. The ball popped into the air, and linebacker Steve Josue, who was in the right place at the right time, snatched the pigskin and took off down the sideline as the coaches' whistles blew to signal the end of practice while rain began to fall.
The Packers will return to Clarke Hinkle Field (weather and field conditions permitting) Thursday for a single practice, schedule to run from 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. (pads).
Where: Clarke Hinkle Field
Weather: 82°, very windy, late rain
Did Not Participate: Chris Day (ribs), Robert Ferguson (hamstring), Atlas Herrion (knee), Paris Lenon (hamstring), Chukie Nwokorie (hamstring), Donnell Washington (arch), and James Whitley (head).
Physically Unable to Perform List: Mike Flanagan (knee tendinitis), Chris Johnson (stress fracture), Mike Wahle (knee contusion),
Reserve/Did Not Report List: Mike McKenzie