The wait is over. Nick Collins, Green Bay's Pro Bowl safety, has seemingly ended his boycott of team workouts. Collins, who was away from the team because of family and/or contract issues, returned to Green Bay an appeared at the final voluntary off-season practice today.
He did not practice, according to Greg Bedard of MJS. However, simply showing up is a big step in the right direction. Collins, who's on the final year of his rookie contract and looking for something similar to Adrian Wilson's deal, shares an agent with Ryan Grant. Grant, as we all know, skipped minicamp last year, and performed well below expectations. Collins' presence at the last practice is a good faith gesture that will (hopefully) jump-start negotiations and result in the new contract Collins wants.
I'm thrilled about this news. Collins will play a vital role in the 3-4 defense as a signal caller, and getting him in for minicamp is absolutely invaluable. Too bad for Anthony Smith, who's playing time will likely depend on injuries to the starters. But I'll take Collins over Smith any day.