This morning, the Green Bay Packers' wide receiver position was the main subject of our Cheese Curds here at Acme Packing Company. Jeff Janis in particular was a heavy focus in our daily links, as he looks to get some more opportunities than usual during spring practices thanks to some injuries to other wide receivers.
Well, today's practice came and after moving indoors due to weather, Janis delivered the play of the day, which had everyone buzzing following the session. In a two-minute drill period, Janis caught a Hail Mary from Aaron Rodgers, fighting for the football up and over Pro Bowl cornerback Sam Shields and finishing the play with a touchdown.
Despite the excitement that Janis' play caused among Packers fans on Twitter and elsewhere today, it's worth remembering that this was an OTA practice held in shorts and in early June. There is still plenty of time to go before the season begins, and perhaps for that reason, Packers head coach Mike McCarthy was cautious in his praise of the third-year wide receiver in his post-practice press conference:
Jeff Janis is doing a lot of good things, but he just needs to continue to progress through the fundamentals of the position. ST he had an excellent year last year, graded out as one of our top players. I'd like to see him take that same step (this year) as a wide receiver.
Those are the words of a coach who clearly still wants to see his young player continue to work hard in the film room and on skills like route-running, but there is plenty of time between now and the week one game in Jacksonville on September 11th. He certainly has time to show that he belongs in the rotation on offense.
Besides Janis' big play, there were a few other notable plays in practice. The Packers' backup quarterback is showing why he has earned that role:
Brett Hundley and Ed Williams with nicest connection of team period. Thirty yard pass to Williams on sideline under pressure— Wes Hodkiewicz (@WesHod) June 6, 2016
Then later, there was this puzzling tweet that had us wondering what really happened inside the Don Hutson Center.
Kennard Backman catches a fade pass over a giggling Eddie Lacy. This #Packers practice has everything.— Ryan Wood (@ByRyanWood) June 6, 2016
Finally, we get to status reports: Clay Matthews was not in attendance at practice today. Since he was absent entirely, it is likely that he was excused from the session. Second-year cornerback Quinten Rollins returned at least in some capacity after being held out of the first two open practices, participating early on before sitting out the latter portions of practice. Rollins later told reporters that he had dislocated a finger on the first day of OTAs (in a closed practice).
The next open practice for the Packers will be next week Tuesday, June 14th, when the team opens its mandatory minicamp.