More bad news to pass along to all of you today and of course it has everything to do with injuries….
Bryan Bulaga goes to IR. Another week and another Packer starter goes to IR. There were some around these parts who wondered why the offensive line graded out as high as it did in the midseason report cards….a big reason for that was Bulaga. Bulaga, like much of the offensive line, had some high profile struggles…but overall did generally good job. As a result he, and again the offensive line, have been slightly underrated for what they have done this year. Now the Packers need to find a solution to fill the hole left by Bulaga. This means more of T.J. Lang at RT and Evan Dietrich-Smith at LG. Not terrible since Lang has the ability to play outside and EDS is better than many of us think as well, but this is going to hurt for the long term.
To replace Bulaga on the 53 man roster the Packers signed cult hero Vic So’oto, who was recently cut by the Oakland Raiders. This move is sure to bring cheers from those ready to give him a yellow jacket and yawns from those who have watched 90% of his play so far. More importantly this could be a troubling sign as to the state of the Packers OLB unit.
The main trouble with this part of the team is the availability of superstar linebacker Clay Matthews. Matthews was injured in the victory against the Arizona Cardinals, injuring his hamstring. Matthews was not able to practice on Monday and there is every indication that he will not be able to play this weekend against the Detroit Lions. Other players missing practice on Monday were Greg Jennings, Mike Neal., and Charles Woodson.
Good news on the injury front, Andrew Quarless back at practice on Monday. Expectation need to be low for what Quarless is able to do, but even with these diminished expectation he should be able to give more production than Jermichael Finley, Tom Crabtree, and D.J. Williams. Other players returning to practice include Jordy Nelson, Sam Shields, and Jerel Worthy. John Kuhn also took part in practice on a limited basis.