It took about a week, but the Green Bay Packers finally have their entire starting defense on the field together for a training camp practice. On Wednesday, first-round draft pick Darnell Savage, Jr. put on the pads for the first time as a pro and he is participating in practice.
Savage had begun training camp on the Non-Football Illness list as he recovered from having his wisdom teeth extracted. He was a full participant throughout OTAs and minicamp in the spring, when he was lining up with the starters on defense since day one.
In Savage’s absence, Raven Greene took most of the first-team reps at safety, while Josh Jones got only a few snaps as a first-team safety. For the most part, Jones had been lining up as the nickel linebacker with the ones, but he and Greene swapped positions for a few reps on Tuesday.
Head coach Matt LaFleur said that the team will work Savage in gradually, “acclimatizing” him to the cadence of training camp practices. Savage was reportedly suited up with the starters for the first team walkthrough reps, though once the team got up to full-speed drills Greene was back on the field.
Having the rookie back this week is a great sign, as he should be fully ready to participate in the team’s first preseason game. That will take place at Lambeau Field on Thursday, August 8th as the Packers take on the Houston Texans.