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Training Camp Report - July 28, 2003


In a departure from the normal routine, the Green Bay Packers held a closed practice Monday night at Lambeau Field.

The main purpose of the private workout was to allow newcomers to get accustomed to the stadium and lights, although there were special scrimmage situations throughout the practice.

Originally scheduled to be a pads practice with some live tackling, GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman was forced to scale things back to shorts and touch contact due to the team's ever-going number of injuries, especially in the offensive backfield where the team was without six of nine running backs.

As it was, fullback Nick Luchey filled in at tailback with the No. 2 offense.

"I would have preferred to be out here in pads tonight," Sherman said, "but with the injuries we've had (it had to be scaled back)."

Among the leaders offensively were wide receivers Javon Walker and Karsten Bailey, who made seven catches apiece while working with the No. 1 offense, while Donald Driver (hamstring) and Robert Ferguson (tailbone) looked on from the sidelines.

In one drive, Bailey went up with safety Antuan Edwards and came down with the ball for a 30-yard gain, before making a 10-yard reception down the left sideline two plays later.

Defensively, Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila racked up four sacks and newcomer Steve Martin made deflected three passes from his tackle position.

Rookie linebacker Nick Barnett also got to the ball, breaking up two straight Doug Pederson passes before later knocking down a Brett Favre pass.

In special teams situations, Ryan Longwell was perfect on four field goal attempts, connecting from distances of 33, 33, 48 and 26 yards, respectively.

Josh Bidwell launched four punts at a 46-yard average, including a pair of pooch kicks.

In a punt return situation, rookie wide receiver Carl Ford made a 43-yard return down the left sideline. Antonio Chatman had a 14-yard return in his lone attempt, but made his biggest impact of the day on a 38-yard reception from Craig Nall.

Not all of the Packers' plays went off quite as well as planned. In the strangest play of the night, Martin deflected a Favre pass into the arms of center Mike Flanagan, who attempted to scamper the remaining 20 yards into the end zone.

"I was taking it to the house," Flanagan said. "I was ready to do my Heisman (Trophy) pose."

Unfortunately for Flanagan, he didn't get that far, and was touched down around the 10-yard line. Why?

"Because I'm fat and slow," Flanagan said.

In injury news, fullback William Henderson was taken to the hospital just prior to practice due to a kidney stone ... halfback Najeh Davenport sat out with a sore hip ... halfback Lamar Smith missed with a sore knee, but an MRI revealed no significant damage after colliding with Darren Sharper in Sunday's morning practice.

The Packers will return to Clarke Hinkle Field with an afternoon practice Tuesday from 2:45-4:30 p.m. (shells).

Where: Lambeau Field

Weather: 60 degrees, clear

Did Not Participate: Keith Burnell (hip), Najeh Davenport (hip), Donald Driver (hamstring), Tony Fisher (Achilles), Robert Ferguson (tailbone), Bubba Franks (knee), Jorg Heckenbach (kidneys), William Henderson (kidney stone), Cletidus Hunt (gastritis), Joe Johnson (quadriceps), James Lee (hip), David Martin (hamstring), Jermaine Petty (hamstring), DeAndrew Rubin (back), Terdell Sands (ankle), Lamar Smith (knee), Adam Tate (knee), Steve Warren (back), Reggie White (knee), Jerry Wisne (calf).

Remains Unsigned: Gilbert Brown

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