Benson Joins Packers for Practice
Never mind that he was in "shells" and everyone else was in full pads, "the" story at Ray Nitschke Field today was the presence of Cedric Benson. As per league rules, there was only so much he could do without the body armor, but he carries himself like a guy who's played in the NFL and played well, which he has.
On Day 1 as a Packer, Benson not only looked the part but also talked the part, saying he had plenty of gas left in the tank on the field and that he had matured past his legal issues off the field. Time will tell on both counts, but the bet here on the latter (see yesterday's blog) is that he's speaking the truth. As for the actual football part of the equation, it's difficult to judge a running back without "live" tackling. Was his shake shaky enough, would he have broken that tackle - those types of questions can only be answered when the defense is going full bore. In practice, would-be tacklers don't finish their tackles. Since Benson won't play against the Browns, our first chance to really get a handle on what he's got left is, ironically enough, the game a week later in Cincinnati against his former team.
-Definite emphasis on game prep with plenty of work vs. Browns stuff. Good frisky tempo but the practice was cut short due to the injury situation. Still went 1hour and 45 Minutes.
-The Packers add one to their backfield and then lose one. FB John Kuhn, who can also play running back, was forced to leave with a sprained ankle. It's been that kind of camp and you can tell Mike McCarthy is getting a bit frustrated with all the injuries.
-Lightning strikes again. Earlier in camp, Nick Perry crumpled Bryan Bulaga on a power rush. Today he did it for a second time. Showing that kind of strength against that kind of player says a lot about Perry's potential.
-Jerel Worthy didn't do anything special vs. the Chargers but today he looked like a force. Really used his hands well during 1 on 1 pass rush/pro.
-Unless you follow the Packers very closely, you've probably never heard of Greg Van Roten, a free agent guard out of Penn. I really like how he plays but he didn't get many snaps in San Diego. Perhaps that'll change Thursday at Lambeau Field. In my humble opinion, he's earned the playing time.