"He still has 48 hours," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said today. "He made a lot of progress from yesterday to today. He's doing everything he possibly can to get ready for the football game. … He's a resilient young man. It's important for him to get ready to play. It will be a game day decision."
If Spitz is unable to play, rookie Daryn Colledge will start in his place. Colledge has been practicing with the first team this week and is looking forward to the chance to play. Green Bay's first of two second round draft picks this year, Colledge did not play in the opener against the Bears. He began training camp at left guard before he was demoted to backup left tackle and guard.
"The demotion happened, and I've fought my butt off the past few weeks and proved that I'm a better player that that," Colledge said. "I think they know that, too. I'm going to keep fighting for that spot. I don't want to get in there because a guy got injured. I want to be in there because I'm the best guy out there and they want me to play."
Provided Spitz can't go, the Packers have no other option than to trust that Colledge has rectified his technique flaws in both pass protection and run blocking and hope for the best Sunday. Coupled with left tackle Chad Clifton's appearing that he's not 100 percent healthy after dealing with knee woes throughout the off-season and the preseason, the left side of the line is vulnerable.
McCarthy said that rookie guard Tony Palmer, acquired in Week 1, also will be ready to play against the Saints.
"Tony is getting ready to play, if needed," McCarthy said. "He definitely has elevated his participation as far as offensive line. He'll be ready if needed on Sunday.
Spitz injured his thigh during one of the Bears' interception returns. McCarthy was not sure how the injury occurred, but he said Spitz didn't realize the severity of the injury till the next day.
Leach signs with Saints
Vonta Leach, released by the Green Bay Packers on Monday, was acquired on waivers by the New Orleans Saints Thursday. Besides helping block for Deuce McAllister and Reggie Bush, Leach likely will be called on to give the Saints more insight on the Packers.
"Absolutely, go visit with the defensive coordinator," McCarthy said. "Everybody does it. I don't know if there's a rule against it, but it's part of the business. (But) I've never found that I've won a football game because of a player acquired from another team."
Leach was with the Packers for the last two seasons. He joins veteran fullback Corey McIntyre, who was signed by the Saints on Tuesday. "Vonta knows the intricacies of our offense but, quite frankly, there are a lot of other individuals that know about our offense, too," McCarthy said. "I mean, I spent five years there, so those are things you factor in the game plan. Times change, your offense changes, faces, and conceptually what you're trying to do changes from year to year. I don't feel like we're at a competitive disadvantage with Vonta there."
Martin adjusts to expanded role
With only one true fullback on the roster in William Henderson, tight end David Martin will serve as Green Bay's backup behind Henderson. Martin spelled Leach for a half-dozen snaps last Sunday and will continue as a multi-dimensional player with Henderson back.
"You want to be that person on the team to give them as much as you can, and that's what I'm trying to do," Martin said.
Martin was once a wide receiver at the University of Tennessee and weighed between 220 to 225 pounds. The sixth-year pro now weighs 260 and is switching between playing tight end and fullback.
"It's pretty interesting, but you've got to do it. I don't mind doing it," Martin said. "I enjoy doing it. I want to do it. As much as they want me to do it, I'm going to do it."
Still the youngest team in NFL
Research completed by the league office confirmed that the Packers have the youngest team at the outset of this season. The average age of the 53-man roster on opening day last Sunday was 25.57 years. Tennessee had the second-youngest squad with an average age of 25.77 per player.
The Packers' average age shot up slightly to 25.70 with this week's additions of receiver Koren Robinson and running back Vernand Morency, both 26, and the departures of fullback Vonta Leach, 24, and running back Samkon Gado, 23. Robinson was signed as a free agent Monday, leading to the release of Leach. The Packers traded Gado to Houston for Morency on Wednesday.
Green Bay also has a league-high 17 rookies and first-year players. Atlanta is next with 14.