In the NFL, winning can smooth over any number of problems. For the Green Bay Packers, a Week 1 victory over the division-rival Chicago Bears may have overshadowed a potential major injury to one of their starting defenders. According to head coach Mike McCarthy, Sam Barrington will be "hard pressed" to practice on Wednesday, placing the inside linebacker's status in doubt for the team's Week 2 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks.
Of Green Bay's fulltime inside linebackers, Barrington stands head and shoulders above the fray. He possesses good speed and movement ability as well as the instincts to get to the ball quickly. While no one will confuse him for Lavonte David in coverage, Barrington has performed better in that area than the Packers' other off-ball linebackers. If he cannot go against Seattle, Jimmy Graham and Marshawn Lynch could have even bigger days than usual.
Last Sunday, the Packers listed Barrington as questionable to play with an ankle sprain. Though he did suit up, the linebacker left midway through the game and did not return. In his place, third-year man Nate Palmer stepped in to play alongside Clay Matthews inside. Should Barrington prove unable to take the field next Sunday during the team's home opener, Palmer expects to fill in once again.