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Packers excuse veterans from mandatory minicamp, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix practices

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Green Bay got its starting free safety on the field today while letting 16 veteran players have the week off.

NFL: Green Bay Packers-Training Camp Jim Matthews-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers were outside on Ray Nitschke Field on Tuesday, practicing as part of the first day of the team’s mandatory minicamp. However, many of the team’s most recognizable players were nowhere to be seen, as they had been given permission to skip the week’s practices.

All of the 16 veteran players whom the Packers excused from this week’s minicamp have six or more years of experience, according to Michael Cohen of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

Here are those players who will get an extra week off for the summer, in descending order of experience level:

  • QB Aaron Rodgers (14th year in the NFL)
  • TE Marcedes Lewis (13th)
  • CB Tramon Williams (12th)
  • K Mason Crosby (12th)
  • OLB Clay Matthews (10th)
  • TE Jimmy Graham (9th)
  • OT Bryan Bulaga (9th)
  • OL Byron Bell (8th)
  • DE Muhammad Wilkerson (8th)
  • CB Davon House (8th)
  • WR Randall Cobb (8th)
  • TE Lance Kendricks (8th)
  • DT Mike Daniels (7th)
  • OLB Nick Perry (7th)
  • OT David Bakhtiari (6th)
  • G Lane Taylor (6th)

Notable in their presence at minicamp were two players in their fifth years in the NFL: wide receiver Davante Adams and safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. Center Corey Linsley also enters his fifth year, with he and Adams both signing new contracts late last season. Meanwhile, Clinton-Dix, who is playing under a fifth-year team option as a first-round draft pick in 2014, made his first appearance on the field in Green Bay this spring today after skipping all of the voluntary portion of the offseason program.

A cynical fan might think that Mike McCarthy and company set the cutoff for players being excused at that six-year mark to ensure that Clinton-Dix would attend. However, McCarthy said prior to Tuesday’s practice that “I feel really good about Ha Ha all the way through,” suggesting that there are no hard feelings from the coaching staff towards the safety.

Additional updates from practice include the return of a few notable players from injury. Offensive tackles Jason Spriggs and Kyle Murphy were taking reps in team periods for the first time, reportedly lining up at right and left tackle, respectively. Meanwhile, Geronimo Allison, Trevor Davis, Kyler Fackrell, Josh Jones, and Jake Ryan sat out with injuries.

The play of the day, however, came from Brett Hundley and Equanimeous St. Brown, who connected for a touchdown over the coverage of first-round cornerback Jaire Alexander in a two-minute drill period (per Ryan Wood). That catch also came with Alexander getting flagged for pass interference.

Stay tuned for more from minicamp throughout this week.