The Green Bay Packers are a beat-up bunch as they started their on-the-field prep for Sunday’s division-deciding showdown against the Minnesota Vikings.
In last week’s loss at Arizona, the Packers started the game without cornerback Sam Shields (concussion) and left tackle David Bakhtiari (ankle), then lost right tackle Bryan Bulaga (ankle) in the third quarter.
Coach Mike McCarthy had a standard answer for all three players before Wednesday’s practice.
“Getting better,” he said when asked individually about all three players.
Shields went through at least individual drills during the portion of practice open to reporters on Wednesday – his first work since suffering the concussion against Dallas on Dec. 13.
McCarthy was hopeful Bakhtiari, who missed the first game of his NFL career last week, would return in some capacity but he was not present while reporters were present. Bulaga took part in the start of individual drills.
“It’s going to take the full week for those guys,” McCarthy said of Shields, Bakhtiari and Bulaga.
Along with Bakhtiari, players not participating were defensive tackle Mike Daniels (groin), tight end Justin Perillo (hamstring), nose tackle B.J. Raji (concussion), outside linebacker Jayrone Elliott (quad) and outside linebacker Mike Neal (unknown). Because he hasn't been cleared, Raji was not allowed to talk to reporters. He was in good spirits in talking with teammates, though, which would appear to be a good sign.
Running back Eddie Lacy isn’t full strength, either. Lacy was limited participation all of last week due to a rib injury, and Fox’s cameras showed Lacy holding the rib during game – even after his 28-yard touchdown. Nonetheless, Lacy was responsible for close to half of Green Bay’s offensive production with 88 of the team’s 178 yards.
Since the first Packers-Vikings game, Lacy’s 416 rushing yards over the past six weeks are the sixth-most in the league.
“There are things that went on earlier in the year and, hopefully, we’re past all that,” McCarthy said of Lacy. “Sometimes, it takes the running game a little bit longer to get going than the passing game. I think history will point to that. Training camps aren’t as long as they used to be. padded work is cut way back. Those are things that, at least in my opinion, you see early in the season just aren’t very clean.”
Oh, about that rib. How is Lacy doing?
“Doing good,” McCarthy said. “Getting better.”
Packers Injury Report
Player (injury): Wednesday
LT David Bakhtiari (ankle): DNP
RT Bryan Bulaga (ankle): Limited
DT Mike Daniels (groin): DNP
OLB Jayrone Elliott (quad): DNP
DT Letroy Guion (foot): Limited
CB Casey Hayward (ankle): Limited
RB Eddie Lacy (rib): Limited
G T.J. Lang (shoulder): Limited
C Corey Linsley (ankle): Limited
LB Clay Matthews (ankle): Full
OLB Mike Neal (hip): DNP
TE Justin Perillo (hamstring): DNP
OLB Nick Perry (shoulder): Full
DT B.J. Raji (concussion): DNP
CB Sam Shields (concussion): Limited
G Josh Sitton (back): Limited
Vikings Injury Report
Player (Injury): Wednesday
DT Sharriff Floyd (knee): Limited
DE Everson Griffen (shoulder): Limited
S Anthony Harris (hip): Full
DT Linval Joseph (foot): DNP
LT Matt Kalil (lower leg): Limited
RB Adrian Peterson (ankle/shoulder): DNP
S Harrison Smith (hamstring): Limited
WR Adam Thielen (low back): 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.