This spring, while the Green Bay Packers’ front office was hard at work scouting rookies for the 2017 NFL Draft and signing free agent players(!!!), a handful of the men on the team who had just wrapped up their rookie years got to work. Mike McCarthy’s go-to cliche about the “second-year jump” will be put to the test this year, as it always is, by last year’s draft class. However, the players in line for that jump in 2017 needed to develop more than just their mental processing of the game of football.
One in particular bulked up significantly, putting significant weight onto his relatively slight frame in the hopes of holding up better over a full NFL season. Another slimmed down as he focuses on being more aggressive and explosive. In today’s Cheese Curds, we look at the development that these two players have made physically and how that should help them on the field when real football begins in September.
In the meantime, as we await that real football, we do have an open Packers OTA practice to follow along with today, so stay tuned here at APC for updates and news from practice.
Kyler Fackrell building his body for the NFL grind | Packers.com
Fackrell had some trouble adjusting to life in the NFL last season, as he wore down and played less and less of a role as the season kept going. One of the keys for him, even coming out of the draft, was to put on muscle, and he says he has added 10 pounds this offseason.
Time for Kenny Clark to start 'crushing it' for Green Bay Packers - ESPN
That 10 pounds Fackrell picked up came from Clark, who dropped 10 pounds of his own while working to become more explosive. Much of his work took place in Los Angeles before returning to Green Bay, as he focused on firing off the snap better and strengthening his back, which slowed him down a bit early last year.
Morgan Burnett helping mentor Packers rookie Josh Jones | Packers Wire
Get used to the "Nitro" package, which is the alignment the Packers use with a safety (Morgan Burnett or Josh Jones) lined up at inside linebacker. Both of those players should see some significant time in that area this season.
Packers’ Damarious Randall still believes “sky’s the limit” | Packersnews.com
Comparing Randall to Davante Adams is so prevalent that it has become cliche nowadays. However, after the two players face off in practice, they are talking with each other about their similar situations as the receiver helps the corner regain and maintain his confidence after a lost season.
Seahawks sign QB Austin Davis over Colin Kaepernick - SBNation.com
I'll avoid delving too deeply into the politics of this issue and just say that the Seahawks' rationale for the decision - that Kaepernick is a "starter" and they wanted a "backup" - is pretty weak.