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Posts tagged with "Damarious Randall"

A few young Packers are getting valuable reps against top opposing receivers this summer.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers are on a normal seven-day week this week. Following last Saturday night’s 21-17 win in Washington, the Packers will travel to Denver this coming Saturday for a date with the Broncos in the teams’ third preseason game. Both teams will likely play their starters more in this contest than in previous exhibition games, as the third game generally serves as the best tune-up for the regular season.

As they get ready for Saturday, the Broncos’ have solidified their plans at quarterback for the season, and we now know which signal-caller will take the snaps with the top offensive unit. The Packers still have questions around injuries on defense, however, particularly at the cornerback unit. Unless Damarious Randall and Davon House return to the field this week, their absences would leave a group of young players, including top draft pick Kevin King and undrafted second-year pro Josh Hawkins, to deal with Denver’s starting offense.

In today’s curds, we look at one of those young corners who is hoping to build on the success he had in last week’s game, as well as some discussion around the hit that put Randall on the sidelines for the past several days.

Josh Hawkins hopes to be Packers’ next undrafted success story | Packers.com
It makes sense that Hawkins would try to emulate Sam Shields‘ game; both were undrafted free agents, were on the small side, and possessed terrific speed. Time will tell if Hawkins has similar success to Shields, though.

Damarious Randall responds to Bryce Treggs whining about $25K fine | Packers Wire
Treggs made the league minimum last season, but he tweeted about starting a Gofundme page to pay for the fine he received after his hit on Randall last week. Needless to say, the Packers corner didn’t take too well to that.

Jeff Janis needs to play like it’s August come September-January – ESPN
Janis has been the preseason wonder for four years now, but has virtually disappeared for the last three regular seasons, save for a couple of special teams plays and a single touchdown. If he makes the roster, that had better change quickly

Packers’ run defense prepared for stiff early-season tests | Packersnews.com
So far, the front seven has held up very well on the ground through two preseason games; opponents are averaging under three yards per carry and the team hasn’t allowed a single play of 15 yards or more.

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Second-year cornerback has patterned his game after Sam Shields

GREEN BAY – Josh Hawkins knows the story well by now. The tale of the young cornerback who starts humbly as an undrafted rookie and blossoms into a Pro Bowler.It was passed down to Hawkins shortly after he signed with the Packers as a college free agent out of East Carolina. While the odds were long given how deep Green Bay was at the position, the story of Sam Shields resonated with Hawkins.

He strove to be just like him – right down to his outfitting.

“I wore the arm bands, the tape, the white gloves just like him,” Hawkins said. “Some of the guys, they called me ‘Little Sam Shields.’ I’m just trying to play like him. I try to mold my game after him.”

Shields was a good muse for Hawkins. One of the greatest undrafted finds in franchise history, Shields recorded 245 tackles, 66 passes defensed and 18 interceptions in 80 regular-season games.

Hawkins, who ran a sub-4.4 time in the 40-yard dash at his college pro day, doesn’t know whether he would beat Shields in a foot race. He never got the chance after Shields sustained a concussion in the 2016 opener that eventually landed him on injured reserve.

However, Hawkins did have four months between the start of the offseason program and Week 1 in Jacksonville to learn from Shields, taking notes on his playstyle and technique.

“Some press technique because he’s a real press guy, hand-to-hand guy,” Hawkins said. “Getting my head turned around quicker, always playing that deep ball first thing you really want to play. He’s really taught me a lot. He’s a great guy.”

Hawkins has been putting all of his work over the last year to work in his second training camp with the Packers. He received his first NFL start Saturday night against Washington due to injuries to Davon House (hamstring) and Damarious Randall (concussion).

Like last year when Hawkins was one of five undrafted rookies to make the Packers’ opening roster, the 5-foot-10, 189-pound cornerback made the most of the opportunity.

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The Packers regained their lead running back Tuesday after he missed the previous week with an unspecified leg injury.

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

While the Green Bay Packers‘ defense received a boost from the return of Damarious Randall, the offense regained one of its top players as well. On Tuesday, lead running back Ty Montgomery returned to practice after missing a week with an unspecified leg injury.

Montgomery did not practice last week with a soft-tissue injury in his leg, leaving the bulk of the work with the No. 1 offense to rookie tailback Jamaal Williams. Though Montgomery’spresence in the backfield didn’t impact the Packers’ planning for last Saturday’s preseason tilt in Washington, he remains a vital piece of the offense and one that could use as much work to improve his pass protection and ball security as possible.

With Montgomery back in the fold, Green Bay’s offense appears set to feature all of its preferred starters for Saturday’s preseason game against the Denver Broncos. Starters tend to see their most extended work during the third exhibition game, and Montgomery should receive more work as a ball carrier than he has since the conclusion of the 2016 season.

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Everything not “fixed” after strong outing in Washington

GREEN BAY – For all that Mike McCarthy liked about the Packers’ 21-17 preseason victory in Washington, the film review showed his team is far from a finished product.

“It’s not like we came out of last night’s game saying we got everything fixed,” McCarthy said on Sunday. “That’s not practical. It’s not our message.”

Some position groups improved, but they still have room for growth. Fundamentals like tackling and ball security were better but not polished.

The preseason is halfway done, and the other half remains important.

“It’s part of the plan, it’s part of the process,” McCarthy said. “Every year you have to move forward as a team through training camp to get where you want to.”McCarthy touched on several units as he reviewed the game.

He felt the No. 2 offensive line improved from the first game overall despite some “tough moments” for individuals. Too many mental errors bogged the unit down.

He saw progress from the young running backs in getting yards after contact and in pass protection. Their decision-making on handoffs was better but “still not good enough.”

The play of the cornerbacks stood out, and McCarthy credited second-year pro Josh Hawkins for earning the best grade of the group.

Even with Davon House (hamstring) and Damarious Randall (concussion) currently sidelined, the unit is still healthier than last year, when players were limited or missing practice regularly.

The corners will likely get a stronger test next week from a more explosive Denver receiving corps, but the growth of young players like Hawkins, Quinten Rollins and Kevin King has been evident throughout camp.

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Breaking down the good and bad from Green Bay’s young rookies in their first preseason game.

The Post-Crescent-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers took on the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday in their first live game action of the preseason. There were injuries, big plays and not so great plays that defined the first night of action. While veterans like Aaron Rodgers were able to take the night off, the rookies with the team were the ones that needed a high volume of snaps.

Coach Mike McCarthy has to see what these players are made of, but keep in mind that any one preseason game won’t define a player’s chances to make the roster. It’s an accumulation of practice, preseason games, as well as effort that can impact whether a player makes the practice squad, active roster, or be looking for work elsewhere.

Let’s recap some key performances by who rookies may have improved or harmed their position on the roster.

Kevin King had a big spotlight on him during this first preseason matchup. As the Packers’ top overall pick, it’s expected that he should be competing for a spot as the top corner on the defense. King had to replace Damarious Randall on the defense quite early as Randall was removed from the game with a concussion. Overall, King had an okay night. He recorded five tackles (one of which led to another defender being able to jar the ball loose), but also had one pretty badly missed tackle that led to a first quarter Eagles touchdown. He was also beaten pretty badly in the second quarter for a big gain. King will need to use this game to learn from mistakes, but he’s coming along.

Rookie safety Josh Jones had a similar game experience. He was hampered by some rough plays and bad angles, but he did tie for the most snaps of the night so I believe the coaching staff has a lot of confidence in him to overcome mistakes.

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Two players on offense lost weight this season while the defense looks to fix its biggest problem from last season.

Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

This offseason was one of reshaping and reimagining for the Green Bay Packers.

While several of the team’s players focused on bulking up and adding muscle this spring and summer — think of defensive linemen Dean Lowry and Kenny Clark, among others — a few players were spending their time slimming down. One such player was rookie wideout DeAngelo Yancey, who had to burn off a few extra pounds that he put on during the grind of traveling and interviewing with teams leading up to the NFL Draft this April.

While that was going on, the Packers’ coaching staff was hard at work trying to fix one of the most significant problems that plagued the team’s defense last season. A goal of all defenses is to limit the number of explosive plays it allows; this is no different for the Packers, and that is the focus for the team this summer. Changing personnel groupings is just one way to do it, and today’s Curds feature a look at one example of the team tweaking the lineup in an effort to limit opposing offenses.

Packers’ defense must take the ‘explosive’ out of ‘explosive gains’ – ESPN
Cornerbacks coach Joe Whitt is on a mission to prevent the kind of big plays that crushed the defense last season, and he has a simple mantra for this season: “If the quarterback and cornerbacks play well, we’ll win.”

Damarious Randall seeks redemption as Packers’ ‘star’ cornerback | Packersnews.com
Is Randall the man in the slot because he’s the right man for the job, or is it because he’s being beaten out by Quinten Rollins for a starting job on the outside?

Renewed focus paying dividends for DeAngelo Yancey | Packers.com
Yancey had a quiet spring, but he showed up in a big way on Monday when he caught a deep pass from Aaron Rodgers when playing on the scout team. This came after Yancey slimmed down significantly during the summer, dropping around 10 pounds from 228 to around 218.

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Packers’ third-year CB was offseason standout at defense’s “star” position

GREEN BAY – Damarious Randall isn’t exactly sure when he felt 100 percent healthy again this past offseason.

But he eventually got there, and he’s not looking back.

“I want to be about 200 percent before this season,” Randall said earlier this spring.

It’s a vast understatement to say Randall’s second year as a Packers cornerback in 2016 did not go as planned.

His position coach, Joe Whitt, isn’t one to make excuses for anybody, and even Whitt conceded the groin injury that forced Randall to miss six games and play at less than his capability for several others was “legitimate.”

Sitting out, trying to play hurt, coping with results that weren’t up to par – it was all a learning experience for the 2015 first-round draft pick. Randall matched his four interceptions from his rookie year (three regular season, one postseason), but everyone knew he wasn’t the same player.

“I’m a guy that relies on my athletic ability, and when you don’t have something like that, it tends to hurt you,” Randall said. “People pointed to technique and this and that, but it works hand in hand with each other. I’m just looking forward to the season.”

It showed on the field this spring. Taking a lot of snaps at the slot corner or “star” position in the Packers’ nickel package – which has become the de facto base defense – Randall was an offseason standout, according to Head Coach Mike McCarthy.

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GREEN BAY, Wis. — The Green Bay Packers‘ oldest cornerback is 24 years old. In fact, they’re all 24 years old.

And none of them has more than two seasons of NFL experience.

Unless you’re counting Demetri Goodson, a 27-year-old with three years of experience who probably won’t be ready for the start of the regular season because of an ACL and MCL tear in November.

That’s where the Packers are after they released Sam Shields on Wednesday. Shields’ release did not come as a surprise, and it was the only move the Packers could make with a veteran player who was scheduled to make $9 million this coming season yet had played in only two of the past 23 games, including playoffs, because of concussions.

Damarious Randall recorded three interceptions in 2016 despite missing six games because of groin surgery. Jeff Hanisch/USA TODAY Sports

But it’s a reminder of just what the Packers are facing at cornerback. And why they finished 31st in the NFL in passing yards allowed last season.

They have six corners on the roster who are under contract for next season — LaDarius Gunter, Damarious Randall, Quinten Rollins, Josh Hawkins, Herb Waters and Makinton Dorleant.

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