Jared Abbrederis might be handling kickoff returns when the Green Bay Packers play at the Denver Broncos on Sunday night.
Before Thursday’s practice, Packers coach Mike McCarthy was “hopeful” that rookie receiver/returner Ty Montgomery would be able to do more than he did on Wednesday as he recovers from a sprained ankle sustained during the Week 6 game against San Diego. However, during the portion of practice that was open to reporters, Montgomery wasn’t even on the practice field, let along working with his teammates.
If Montgomery can’t play, the door might be open for Abbrederis. Abbrederis replaced Montgomery on kickoff returns against San Diego and returned his only opportunity 30 yards.
“We’re obviously comfortable with Jared,” McCarthy said. “That’s why we put him back there. He handles the football seamlessly. I thought he made a good decision on the return (vs. San Diego) and we’re definitely comfortable. He’ll be up and ready to go.”
Along with Montgomery, the only other player to not participate was rookie cornerback Damarious Randall. He was not on Wednesday’s injury report so the nature of his injury will not be known until Thursday’s injury report is released.
Running back James Starks, who was out on Wednesday due to a hip injury, went through individual drills when reporters were present. He was listed as limited participation.
“James Starks, work was good yesterday. I know he felt good at the end of the day, so the plan is to get him to do more today,” McCarthy said.
Meanwhile, safety Morgan Burnett and receiver Davante Adams appear on track to return to the lineup. Burnett hasn’t played since the Week 2 game vs. Seattle and Adams hasn’t played since aggravating an ankle injury on the first series of the Week 3 game vs. Kansas City. Both were listed as limited, as was outside linebacker Nick Perry, who injured a shoulder against San Diego in the last game.
"We're taking steps in the right direction," said Burnett, who would love to return to square off against his former college teammate, Broncos receiver Demaryius Thomas.
Burnett and Adams will be under the watchful eye of McCarthy and the medical staff if they’re in the lineup on Sunday night.
“You always watch the guys a little more the first time back. That’s a normal process,” McCarthy said. “It’s something that we’ll address at the end of the week when we get together game management-wise when we talk through the whole the roster and patterns of substitution and all those types of things. Obviously, (safety is) not a position where you normally substitute in the past, but that will be part of our game management meeting.”
Green Bay Packers
Player (injury): Wednesday, Thursday
WR Ty Montgomery (ankle): DNP, DNP
CB Damarious Randall (ankle): Not listed, DNP
RB James Starks (hip): DNP, Limited
WR Davante Adams (ankle): Limited, Limited
S Morgan Burnett (calf): Limited, Limited
OLB Nick Perry (shoulder/hand): Limited, Limited
DT B.J. Raji (groin): Limited, Limited
ILB Nate Palmer (chest): Full, Full
Denver Broncos Injury Report
Player (injury): Wednesday, Thursday
OLB Shane Ray (knee): DNP, DNP
OLB Von Miller (not injury related): Not listed, DNP
LT Ty Sambrailo (shoulder): Limited, Limited
OLB DeMarcus Ware (back): Limited, Limited
G Evan Mathis (hamstring): Limited, Limited
CB Aqib Talib (ankle): Limited, Limited
WR Emmanuel Sanders (shoulder): Limited, Limited
S Omar Bolden (foot): Full, Full
ILB Corey Nelson (knee): Full, Full
RB Juwan Thompson (hamstring): Full, Full
TE Owen Daniels (shoulder): Full, Full
RT Ryan Harris (knee): Full, Full
Bill Huber is publisher of PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at email@example.com or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PackerReport.