Sports

Packers Practice Notes – February 3

By Jim Trotter, Professional Football Writers of America
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Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

DALLAS (PFWA) – The notable news from Packers’ second day of practice for Super Bowl XLV was wideout Donald Driver sitting out team drills after tweaking a quadriceps injury the previous day. Coach Mike McCarthy said the move was precautionary.

“He’s fine,” McCarthy said Thursday at the conclusion of the 1-hour, 45-minute, no-pads workout at Highland Park High School’s indoor facility. “He wants to practice and all that, but I’m not taking any chances with him. I’ll probably hold him out tomorrow, as well.”

Driver was placed on the inactive list Nov. 7 against Dallas and missed significant stretches in two other games because of a quadriceps injury. The 12th-year veteran still finished second on the team with 51 catches and was fourth with 565 yards.

In other injury news, linebacker Erik Walden did not participate in team drills after testing his sprained ankle the previous day in practice.

“He was very sore, which is why we limited him today,” McCarthy said. “It’s up the air with him right now. We’ll see how he feels tomorrow. Even if he feels a lot better, he’ll be limited. I’m going to hold him back and give him every chance to be ready for the game.”

Walden sustained the injury in the third quarter of the Jan. 23 NFC Championship Game at Chicago and did not return. Frank Zombo continued to work with the first team in his absence.

The Packers focused on red-zone work, blitz periods, and punt return and kickoff coverage Thursday. Things got chippy during the blitz period when offensive lineman Evan-Dietrich-Smith, working with the scout team, and linebacker Rob Francois got into a pushing and grabbing match. Teammates stepped in and separated them, and there were no further incidents.

McCarthy said he felt the practice was good, adding: “Frankly, we feel like we’re ready to go. We’ve got everything in, so tomorrow will be completely review for us.”

The Packers conducted the jog-through portion of practice at the team hotel in Las Colinas for the second consecutive day. They did, however, alter their routine by waiting to change for their practice at Highland Park until they arrived at the school. On Wednesday they dressed at Southern Methodist University before busing 5 minutes to Highland Park.

The practice was attended by the game-day broadcast crew from FOX, which will carry the game against the Steelers. Afterward, McCarthy spent a few minutes chatting with two-time Super Bowl-winning coach Jimmy Johnson, who is part of the FOX studio team.

“He had a lot of encouraging words,” McCarthy said. “He was very complimentary. It was neat to have a chance to talk to him. It was the first time I’ve ever met him in person.”

The Packers will take their team photo Friday morning at Highland Park High before conducting their final on-field practice.

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