If you talk to an NFL coach about a young player coming off their rookie season, they will often mention the “year two jump.”
That’s the hopeful increase in performance as well as the decrease in the speed of the NFL game for them after what’s usually an up-and-down first season.
For Green Bay Packers safety Henry Black, he could be in for such a sophomore season. After a forced fumble that all but sealed the game against the Houston Texans, Black was eventually added to the active roster from the practice squad in December.
He enters year two looking to become a solid backup behind Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage and much like receiver Amari Rodgers, Black will have a former Packer in his corner (except in Rodgers’ case the former part became current when the Packers traded for Randall Cobb).
That Packer for Black is Tramon Williams, who Black worked out with when he was in high school in 2013 and kept in contact with since. They actually got to be teammates when Williams returned to Green Bay one last time before the NFC Championship last season.
With Williams now retired, it’s up to Black to maintain that legacy and would anyone really get against him at this point?
Coming in as a rookie and already being described as professional is high praise and a lesson Black learned from Williams all those years ago. Don’t be surprised if that leads to a long NFL career for Black even if it’s not in Green Bay.
The Packers saw a lot of players return to practice yesterday ahead of tomorrow’s preseason opener. It will give them ample opportunity to see as many people on the 90-man roster (entrenched starters excluded of course) as possible.
Deguara was an interesting pick when he was selected in 2020 but his rookie season was derailed by injury. He looks to be a classic H-back and how Matt LaFleur utilizes him is something to watch this preseason.
I love a good beef between coaches, even when it’s just playful. For his part, LaFleur owned the younger Falcons coach with a crack at Smith’s hair color after LaFleur was accused of spending too much time in front of a mirror.
Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise: penmanship is important. Just don’t use it to rob a bank.