Wahle, Ferguson return to practice

Guard Mike Wahle and wide receiver Robert Ferguson each returned to practice today. Wahle practiced for the first time in training camp. Ferguson is hoping to play in his first preseason game this Friday against Jacksonville.<p>

Wahle suffered a bruised knee while lifting weights on July 2. He may play this Friday when the Packers travel to Jacksonville to play the Jaguars, but it depends on how his knee responds to practice today and Wednesday.

So far, so good for Wahle, who was all smiles after practice.

"There is no substitute for live reps," said Wahle. "There is only so much you can learn watching film."

Coach Mike Sherman felt Wahle "looked excellent" in practice.

Ferguson tried to sneak into practice on Monday by wearing shoulder pads, but Sherman told him to sit out of team scrimmages. On Tuesday, however, Ferguson ran plays with the first-team offense, and felt good afterward.

"He's out there with full pads on and I had to kick him out of a drill," Sherman said. "If we had 53 like that, we'd be in great shape. He's a special guy. He's going to have a great career in this league." SEARCHING FOR NO. 5

Antonio Chatman has won the No. 4 spot at wide receiver. Chatman's ability to return punts has helped him win the spot over Carl Ford and Scottie Vines.

"This is his second year in the system," said wide receivers coach Ray Sherman about Chatman. "You've got to remember, he came from arena ball where he played a full season, then came to us and went through a full training camp. His body never got a chance to rest or recover. Then when he went through a full regular season, his body was worn down. He had a chance this off-season to rest up. He's in great shape. He came to training camp very focused. He's playing with a lot of confidence right now."

Donald Driver, Robert Ferguson and Javon Walker are the Packers' top three receivers.

The Packers are trying to determine the best fit for the No. 5 receiver position. Ford, Vines, Sam Breeden, Reggie Love and Kelvin Kight are the main contenders.


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