Act 2 Begins for Sherrod

Wednesday was a big day, and Thursday will be even bigger for former first-round pick Derek Sherrod as he continues his long comeback from a broken leg sustained 22 months ago.

Tuesday was a big day for Derek Sherrod.

That's when the offensive lineman found out he would be allowed to practice after starting the season on the physically unable to perform list.

Wednesday was a big day, too.

That's when Sherrod practiced for the first time in about 12 months.

"I feel really good," Sherrod said on Wednesday. "Just to be able to do everything out there with my teammates was pretty good. Just going out there and really feeling it out."

Sherrod broke both bones in the lower half of his right leg at Kansas City in December 2011. He hasn't played since. He's barely practiced since, for that matter. He also opened last season on the PUP list. He practiced for two weeks, but never anything extensive, before being shut down for the season.

That makes Thursday another big day. That will mark Sherrod's first time doing any extensive work in pads since the injury.

"Each day at practice is a day to get better and I look forward to it, just as I was looking forward to today," Sherrod said.

Padded work is the next step in Sherrod's comeback. Obviously, Sherrod can't be a factor on Sundays until he can progress through the typical Wednesday-through-Friday workweek.

With Sherrod back at practice, the Packers now have three weeks to either put him on the active roster, put him back on injured reserve or release him.

"He hasn't been in pads since the Kansas City game," coach Mike McCarthy said. "He needs to get down there. The individual work will be really good for him. How we integrate him into the team work is something we've talked about. We're not going to just roll him out there and have him play 55 snaps in pads. I don't think that's really smart with what he's been through and the path he had to take to get to this point. So, we will break him in and push as far as we can. Just be smart."

Sherrod was the team's first-round pick in 2011. By now, he was expected to be a stalwart on the offensive line. Rather, it's been a "pretty tough deal" being sidelined for almost two years. Barring an injury to one of the starters, the rest of the season will be a time to shake off the rust and to get reacclimated to the rigors of life in the trenches.

"It has been a while but that's what practice is for,' he said. "Practice is for going out there and working on your technique and fundamentals and making everything better. That's what I'm going to go out there each day and do."

Meanwhile, defensive end Jerel Worthy's wait will continue. He feels like he's ready to go as he returns from a torn ACL sustained in Week 17 of last season. But on an injury-riddled team, the only position that has been unscathed is the defensive line. So, at this point, there's really no room for Worthy, especially with so many injured players occupying spots on the roster.

"That's up to Ted," the upbeat Worthy said of general manager Ted Thompson. "Just speaking for me, physically, I've been feeling great these past few weeks. Whenever I have an opportunity to go out and showcase my skills, I'll be ready to go. Until then, I'm going to continue to support my guys and cheer on our D-line, which has been playing great up front. As long as we can continue to keep it rolling, it really doesn't matter who's in there as long as we're winning."

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at

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