Blackmon fielded a line drive punt on the run from Jon Ryan and ran untouched for about 40 yards before he was "tagged" in the no-tackle punt return session at Lambeau Field. It was Blackmon's only punt return of the night, but it quickly brought back memories of the "it" that Blackmon possesses.
Last year, Blackmon sparked Green Bay's punt return unit with eight returns for 106 yards and one touchdown. However, Blackmon broke his foot during an Oct. 3 practice and did not return until Nov. 25. It was the same foot that he injured about a month after he was selected in the fourth round (115th overall) of the 2006 NFL draft by the Packers. Blackmon aggravated the foot injury in the Packers' regular season finale against Detroit and did not play in the Packers' two postseason games.
Green Bay ranked seventh in the NFL in punt return average (10.3 yards per return), but you've got to think it would have been better had Blackmon been healthy throughout the season. Tramon Williams and Will Blackmon were good fill-ins. In fact Williams returned a punt 94 yards for a touchdown. However, Williams only gained three yards on three yards in two postseason games.
Blackmon has been able to participate in the team's traning camp thus far this year. Though he sat out of Friday's practice with soreness in the same foot that he has injured twice, he appears to be playing at the same high level he was at early in the 2007 season. During the intra-squad scrimmage, Blackmon played on Green Bay's first-team defense in the team's base and passing defenses as starting cornerbacks Charles Woodson and Al Harris each sat out.
Though Blackmon is prone to injuries, he certainly is worth a roster spot. All the team's management and fans can do is hold their breath and hope that he can stay healthy because he has the ability to make a big impact everytime he touches the ball.
"I know that I can be the best at it and that's the plan," Blackmon said. "I do it for the team. You want to score and win games."
Though his right foot has flared up during training camp, he's doing his best to block it out of his mind. When asked how it is feeling, Blackmon quickly replied, "What are you talking about?"
If Blackmon can steer clear of injuries like he does defenders, the Packers will be in good hands.