Camp diary: Previewing Packers' Family Night scrimmage
Fans gather in preparation of Packers Family Night on August 2, 2014. Photo: Image by Jessie Garcia
A couple of days ago I was kidding with Bryan Bulaga that his injury last year took the scrimmage out of Family Night!
He laughed and shook his head but I don’t believe there is any small coincidence that starting THIS year the Packers will merely practice in Lambeau Field before the Family Night crowd and not scrimmage.
For those of you who don’t remember, a year ago at this time Bulaga had just been installed as the starting left tackle in the Packers revamped offensive line. During the Family Night Scrimmage he tore the ACL in his knee and missed the entire season.
In his place, an unheralded rookie fourth-round had a very solid season. This year Bulaga is back at right tackle where many of us believe he can become a Pro Bowl player.
Oh, and it anyone gets injured tonight, it won’t be because of an intra-squad scrimmage.
Speaking of injuries, Wautoma native Jared Abbrederis (a good-looking fifth round rookie wide receiver out of Wisconsin) suffered a knee injury earlier this week in practice. No official word yet but apparently he suffered a significant injury (torn ACL) and if that is the case he might be headed for the injured reserve list and essentially be red-shirted for his rookie season.
That’s too bad because he was having a nice camp and was among those in the running for the punt return job. Keep your fingers crossed Wautoma. Hopefully it is not as bad as reported in the media.
I really like Family Night because we see a lot of people who never get to come to Lambeau Field for a game, preseason or regular season. This event is sold out 73,000 and the crowd was arriving this morning around 9 am in the parking lots near my hotel. They are relishing this opportunity to see the Packers, Lambeau, practice and the fireworks that will follow. It is a great night for everyone involved plus the event raises money for charity. In the past we have had some difficult weather but the show has gone on. (Tonight it looks great!!! Hazy sunshine, warm and dry!)
As for practice the Packers will be installing another phase of offense and defense and for those of you who come here to view training camp practices the session will look similar to what you have seen only this practice is in historic Lambeau Field.
One note, at 6:30 p.m. the Packers will come out and go through their pregame warm-up routine that they will use for regular season games, then return to the locker room and come out for the practice at 7:30. That’s the dress rehearsal for the team and all of the new players involved.