Even more Packers linemen out with injuries; health a major issue up front

Jay Sorgi

Tackle Andrew Datko. Photo: Image by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Even more Packers linemen out with injuries; health a major issue up front

CREATED Aug. 8, 2013

GREEN BAY - Health has become a major concern for the Green Bay Packers as training camp has commenced.

Now, a typically expanded Packers roster in the first preseason game may only have nine healthy linemen available for its preseason contest Friday night at Lambeau Field against the Arizona Cardinals.

Coach Mike McCarthy said three linemen had to miss Packers practice Thursday morning, two due to injury.

"T.J. Lang's back was bothering him today..had a pretty good collision in Wednesday's practice," said McCarthy.

"Andrew (Datko) missed practice today because he has a concussion."

Guard Lane Taylor also missed practice due to personal reasons.

All this comes on top of Bryan Bulaga's apparent season-ending ACL injury and problems with his fellow tackle Derek Sherrod, who was placed on the PUP list at the start of camp, plus JC Tretter's broken ankle.

If all of them are held out from Friday's game, the following linemen will be the only ones available for Friday night.

- Centers: Evan Dietrich-Smith (also a guard), Garth Gerhart, Patrick Lewis

- Guards: Josh Sitton, Greg Van Roten (also a center), Lane Taylor

- Tackles: David Bakhtiari, Kevin Hughes, Marshall Newhouse

That's nine offensive linemen - what you'd normally see on a 46-man gameday active roster, not the first week of preseason.

We all know what happened when 18 Packers players were unavailable for a certain Super Bowl game 30 months ago, so this is not something the Packers can't overcome.

We'll see what happens.