Punter puts practice game in perspective

Punter B.J. Sander was glad to get back to work after a rough start in the Family Night scrimmage. While Sander returned to stellar form at practice Sunday, he has to wait a week to prove in prime time that spending a third-round pick on a punter will pay off.<P>

Saturday night marked a disastrous debut for the Ohio State punter. He shanked his first two punts, including an anemic 20-yarder on his initial try under the Lambeau lights. The next one went just a bit farther, a 26-yard line drive.

Even his best effort was nothing to write home about. Sander hit a 36-yarder later in the evening to bring his average to 27.3-yards per kick.

The left-footed Sander chalked it up to experience seasoned with a dose of trying too hard.

"I was hitting the ball well in warmups," Sander told reporters after the scrimmage. "So, I figured if I give it a little more ... It's just like in golf you think you can give it a little more, and you end up hurting yourself in the end."

Perhaps the worst part of the experience for Sander was the performance of camp challenger Nathan Chapman. The Australian's lone punt sailed 53 yards, drawing fireworks-worthy oohs and ahs from the crowd.

Sander was already back in form at Sunday's practice, and will be one of the handful of Packers on the field today for a special teams-only session.

With the Packers already making a considerable draft investment, it's unlikely that this year's Ray Guy Award winner has to spend much time looking over his shoulder.

"I know that if I stay within myself, I'll be fine," Sander said.

Sander will get another chance under the Lambeau lights one week from today when the Packers host Seattle in their Monday Night Football preseason opener. Coach Mike Sherman agreed: "It was a practice. We have lots of practices."

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