Happy training camp week, Green Bay Packers fans! This week sees the official start of the 2019 season, as players report and practice begins on Thursday. When they do so, they will have one new starter on the offensive line, but that single swap should make a significant difference.
Billy Turner’s arrival from Denver comes with less fanfare than the Packers’ three defensive free agent signings. However, he could have just as big an impact, if not more, compared to any of those three individuals given the quality (or lack thereof) of play by the Packers’ right guards in 2018.
In particular, Turner had an impressive streak in the second half of last season as a pass-protector, keeping Broncos quarterbacks clean while largely suiting up at left guard. As long as he can maintain that level of play on the right side — which he has played plenty in the past — Green Bay should again have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL.
And his new quarterback knows it.
Packers OL Billy Turner didn’t allow a sack over final 7 games of 2018 | Packers Wire
Turner had a remarkable run in pass-protection down the stretch last season, which undoubtedly played into the Packers giving him a big contract. He allowed just one hit and no sacks in the last two months or so.
Aaron Rodgers says Billy Turner is a 'great addition for us' | 247sports
Meanwhile, Rodgers continues to go out of his way to pump up Turner to the media. Clearly he feels like the weak link on last year's line has been fixed.
Inbox: More important is how they bounce back | Packers.com
Mike Spofford's mailbag addresses questions about the proposed 17-game regular season, the Texans joining the Packers on bicycles, and Green Bay's throwback uniforms. This is a good one.
Kendrick Norton: Dolphins waive and will pay salary to DT who lost arm | SI.com
This is a classy move by the Dolphins -- rather than cutting him outright, Miami put Norton on the reserve/non-football injury list, which will allow him to collect his full salary and benefits through the rest of this year.
Bears' Clinton-Dix (knee) will likely start on PUP | ESPN
I'm presenting this without comment.
How to stroke a cat, according to science | The Conversation
Cats aren't aloof, you're just petting them improperly. This makes me think of this classic Principal Skinner moment: