Training camp notes

The pads were popping Monday morning at Clarke Hinkle Field. Packers coach and general manager gave his team the green light to tackle anybody but the quarterbacks in a series of short scrimmages in the morning practice session.<p>

It marked the first time since training camp began last week that the Packers went "live." The good news is that no one suffered any major injuries.

The Packers practiced their goal-line offense and also worked from their own 38-yard line. On the first play of the goal-line offense, quarterback Brett Favre threw a strike to rookie wide receiver Javon Walker for about a 25-yard gain. Walker split two defenders to make a nice catch.

"There were some good things for the first offense the first time out there," said Sherman. "The first play, Javon Walker catches a big pass to get us out of there. I thought our defense, in every phase today, stepped up, particularly our run defense. "Today was a very heavy day. There was a lot of hitting going on today. This was probably the toughest practice in the entire preseason in regard to contact. We ran our four-minute offense, which is what we do at the end of the game if we have a lead. Or if we don't have a lead defensively trying to get the ball back. I thought our 9-on-7, our four-minute (offense), and (goal-line), our defense played a good, solid run defense which was something they needed to do today and they did it."

Defensive end Vonnie Holliday scrimmaged for the first time. With the off-season acquisitions of middle linebacker Hardy Nickerson and defensive end Joe Johnson, the defense is much improved over last year. Nose tackle Gilbert Brown and defensive tackle Cletidus Hunt practiced with the first unit. Rob Holmberg stepped in for outside linebacker Nate Wayne, who will be held from scrimmages indefinitely until his surgically repaired knee is stronger. Scott Frost played safety in place of Antuan Edwards, who also is being held from "live tackling" drills to give his surgically repaired knee more time to mend.

News of the day: Running back Ahman Green (hamstring) and cornerback Tod McBride (back) returned to the practice field. McBride missed the first four practices of this camp. Green sat out of Sunday's afternoon practice after tweaking his hamstring. Sidelined: Defensive back Bhawoh Jue (groin), offensive tackles Kevin Barry (hamstring), Earl Dotson (knee) and Kevin Jordan (knee), wide receiver Charles Lee (hamstring) and tight end David Martin (heat illness) did not practice at all. Wayne (knee) and Edwards (knee) were again limited in practices.

Who's hot: How about those young Packers receivers. Walker again made some impressive catches as did second-year pro Robert Ferguson to the applause of about 2,000 railbirds on hand.

Who's not: Punter Scott Elder shanked all four of his punts in the afternoon practice. Thank goodness for Josh Bidwell, who hit some booming punts to returners Darrien Gordon, Darren Sharper and Ferguson.

Roster moves: None. Quote: "Every day he comes out here, he's getting better. There appears to be a fair confidence level between our quarterback and him because they have connected a few times, and he has connected with the other quarterbacks. He's a guy who has come in here and worked extremely hard, trying to earn a spot on this team just like if he wasn't drafted. I admire his work ethic and the condition that he came into camp in." - head coach and general manager Mike Sherman on Javon Walker.

Weather: Cloudy in the morning, but sunny in the afternoon and about 85 degrees and humid.Next practices: Tuesday, July 30 beginning at 8:45 a.m. (full squad) and 3:15 p.m. (special teams).

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