Defense getting its beef back

One day after a stellar and shocking defensive outing, the good news just kept on coming for the Packers on Monday.

Nose tackles Grady Jackson and James Lee are hoping to practice Wednesday and possibly be ready for Sunday afternoon's game against Dallas.

"I'm going to practice Wednesday and try and get a feel for it," said Jackson. "I guess it all depends on how Wednesday and Thursday go, and how the medical staff feels. I'll probably do a little team stuff, and getting some hitting in and do a little running."

Jackson was supposed to be the fulcrum of the Packers' defense but suffered a dislocated kneecap just three plays into the regular-season opener at Carolina. Into Jackson's spot stepped Lee, but he, too, exited midway through the next game against Chicago with a knee injury.

Instead of coming back to practice out of shape, the allegedly 340-pound Jackson said he dropped a few pounds during his time on the sideline.

"I've lost a little weight because I've been working hard," said Jackson. "I can't wait to see if I can go. I'm like a kid in a candy store."

Lee, meanwhile, says he's "about 99.9 percent. I'm just ready to go out and play some football. I've been rehabbing like a madman to get back out there."

After helping the Giants' Tiki Barber, Tennessee's Chris Brown and Indianapolis' Edgerrin James ascend into the top three spots in the NFL rushing list, the Packers manhandled Detroit's running game on Sunday. The Lions were held to 33 yards on 16 rushes.

"We're two pretty big guys and I think everyone is anxious for us to come back," said Jackson.


While the Packers received good news on the defensive front, things remain dicey at wide receiver. Big-play performer Javon Walker injured the A.C. joint in his right shoulder when he was on the receiving end of a crunching hit by Lions cornerback Chris Cash. Walker writhed on the Ford Field turf in pain but only missed a few plays.

Packers coach Mike Sherman said Walker "should be fine," and voiced optimism about starting receiver Robert Ferguson. Ferguson missed Sunday's game due to a strained Achilles' tendon suffered at Thursday's practice.

"I'm optimistic he will heal fast and be available for Sunday," said Sherman. "He was trying in the pregame to go out and give it a go, but I wasn't going to let that happen. He thought he could go, but he always thinks he can go."


Backup running back Najeh Davenport says he's only "80 percent healthy" after injuring his hamstring in the regular-season opener. It sure didn't look like it, as Davenport was as punishing as ever against Detroit. He plowed his way for 62 punishing yards on 10 carries and a 13-yard touchdown sprint around left end.

"It just hurts when I run and I'm not as fast as I usually am. But I feel like I bring the team energy and felt like they needed me," Davenport said.

Pro Bowl halfback Ahman Green, meanwhile, likely will be held out of Wednesday's practice to get his Achilles' "calmed down a little bit."

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