In a practice session that was closed to the public, outside of Cincinnati Bengals season ticket members, the Green Bay Packers had to opportunity to spar with another NFL team on Wednesday. After being themselves up all summer, the Packers were able to get a live look against the Bengals — who they’ll play in their preseason opener on Friday Night.
On the injury front, the Packers got a few positive pieces of news before practice. First, left tackle David Bakhtiari was able to suit up for the joint practice — marking the first time that he’s participated in back-to-back practices this summer. Tight end Josiah Deguara, who has been out with a calf injury since before Family Night, also returned to the field on Wednesday.
Here’s what you missed at practice today:
The media was able to record the seven-on-seven portion of practice in Cincinnati, a change from the Packers’ regulations, which allowed for a few more glimpses at what quarterback Jordan Love was capable of. Based on the counts from practice, Love went 3-of-5 (for one touchdown) in the first team period, 4-of-8 (two touchdowns and one interception) in the red zone period and 4-of-6 (excluding a spike) in a two-minute drill.
In total, that means that Love was 11-of-19 against the Bengals’ first-team defense during team drills today. For reference, Love’s single interception on the day came on a screen throw in the red zone.
Nice completion from Love to Doubs pic.twitter.com/6lUk26sN47— Braydon Allen (@BraydonAllen) August 9, 2023
The player who seemed to impress the most in this joint practice was second-year receiver Romeo Doubs, who connected with Love on a 60-yard touchdown. Pro Football Focus’ Sam Monson tweeted out, “The Romeo Doubs thing is real against other teams as well...in camp. Guy’s been open consistently.”
Hopefully, we get a chance to see that Love and Doubs connection live on Friday, as head coach Matt LaFleur has hinted that the starters could take a series or two of snaps in the preseason game.
The other piece of interest on Wednesday came from Elgton Jenkins, who doesn’t seem to have any less bite now that he’s signed a multi-year deal. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Tom Silverstein, the left guard “dropped” Bengals linebacker Germaine Pratt on a screen, which started a scrum. A few minutes later, Jenkins swung at Bengals defensive lineman DJ Reader, which led to Jenkins being pulled aside from the rest of the offense.
Second straight practice for Rashan Gary. Came off PUP on Monday and is good to go again. pic.twitter.com/vUR47Hkcw5— Rob Demovsky (@RobDemovsky) August 9, 2023
Without quarterback Joe Burrow, who is dealing with a calf injury, the Bengals struggled mightily to move the ball on the Packers’ defense throughout practice. No single player was credited for being the lone force to stop Trevor Siemian. Rather, it was the collective defensive backs unit, which LaFleur called the strength of the team in the pre-practice presser.
Rookie seventh-round cornerback Carrington Valentine, though, did continue to build momentum today. Valentine is the leading candidate for the Packers’ “out of nowhere” break out of the summer and had two pass breakups as an outside cornerback with the first-team defense, per Packers.com’s Wes Hodkiewicz. On Monday, Green Bay’s only practice between Family Night and this joint practice session, Valentine saw a few snaps as an outside cornerback that pushed Rasul Douglas into the slot. If Valentine continues to play well enough, Keisean Nixon might be freed up to play more special teams (or even offense) instead of having to also eat up the team’s slotback reps while Eric Stokes (ankle) is on the PUP list.
Rookie kicker Anders Carlson continues to battle with consistency issues. Based on distances, there seems to be no rhyme or reason for which kicks Carlson has missed this camp. Coming into the day, Carlson was 28 of 41 for training camp and he managed to hit 7 of 10 against the Bengals. One miss was long, a 56-yarder, but another, a PAT, was a chip shot. Kicker remains the lone position where the Packers only have one player on their 91-man roster.