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2024 Green Bay Packers Mini Camp Recap

With the Green Bay Packers starting their minicamp this past week, the media was able to catch a large portion of those practices. In this article, I summarize everything from the last two days that Packer fans can get excited about now that there is a 40-day gap between minicamp and the next action in Green Bay, training camp.

We'll start with our absences. Those included Jaire Alexander, Xavier McKinney, and Keisean Nixon on defense, and Josh Jacobs only for day two on the offense. Head Coach Matt LaFleur told reporters that he told them to "take a hike" as a reward for being there all offseason. Those veterans being there all off-season is a massive thing for the young and upcoming Packers team, which needs all of the veteran leadership they can get. Another massive part of training camp is the attendance of Jordan Love. Having your QB1 there from day one is a massive thing for the offense's development, and having your leader present as well.

Day One Recap

The rehab group was up first, with Zach Tom, Tyler Davis, Alex McGough, Kitan Oladapo, Spencer Waege, Jarveon Howard, and Gemon Green working on the side today.

The Packers started minicamp the same way they left OTA's, with a big stretching session, a new thing under their new hire at Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Aaron Hill. Hill, who spent five years with the 49ers before signing with Green Bay this offseason, implemented a longer period to warm up to ensure that no soft tissue injuries occur due to guys not being warm. This is a massive step in the right direction for the Packers, who had many hamstring and quad injuries last season alone. When they came out of the Don Hutson Center, they would go into all their individual drills and skelly until team time.

Once it hit team time, the energy picked up even higher for a young team with one goal in mind this year: the Super Bowl. On the first play from scrimmage, Jordan Love would hit Romeo Doubs for a nice gain to get the drive started. Josh Jacobs would spring a big run on the second play, and that's when the defense, newly described as "pin your ears back and go play" by Preston Smith, stood their ground. Veteran Linebacker and Special Teamer Eric Wilson would stop AJ Dillon for a loss on the swing pass. One good play for the defense gave the offense enough spark for the next few plays, though, as Love would hit Jayden Reed for a big gain. Love, who has learned the hard count, got the defense to jump on the next play for a "Free Play," in which he would hit a first down completion to Romeo Doubs. As the rest of team time went on, one thing to note would be Rookie Running Back, MarShawn Llloyd's usage. Lloyd has been raved about by both local media and coaches for his explosiveness and big play ability. The offense has used him in various ways already, and he looks to be another fun tool that Love can use to his advantage this year.

As for the twos, Sean Clifford would lead them out with a completion over the middle to Malik Heath. Breakout UDFA wide receiver, Julian Hicks, would receive the end around on the following play for a nice gain. Rookie quarterback Michael Pratt has also been stepping in to get some valuable reps. Pratt would hit Heath and DuBose for completions on his first two reps and looked sharp to start camp, which might be an understatement.

Red Zone

Pratt's last few throws would lead them into red zone time. Jordan Love and the first-string offense would be up first. Love would hit Romeo Doubs for a short gain, then proceed to hit Josh Jacobs for a nice gain, which many thought was a touchdown, but they marked him just short. On the following play, Love hit Bo Melton with a quick out for the score. Elgton Jenkins would sub in at Center the subsequent play, which had been explored all offseason with the offensive line being able to switch in and out of various spots. Brenton Cox would get through and pressure Love into a quick throw, which would see Malik Heath barely miss getting his second foot in due to the coverage by Rookie Safety Javon Bullard. That would lead to third down and a goal from the four-yard line. With high pressure, Love would find Jayden Reed, who would score and celebrate with a backflip.

Clifford came in with the second-string offense as Marshawn Lloyd hit a huge run. Clifford would throw an interception over the middle to Safety Zayne Anderson on the next play. After a Ty'Ron Hopper sack on the following play, Michael Pratt was subbed in at Quarterback. With that, Pratt would make a rollout on the bootleg look easy and fire a strike for a touchdown. He would return on the following play and fire another perfectly placed ball for Samori Toure for a second straight touchdown. Clifford would come back in now, throwing a ball high for Grant DuBose, who tipped it, leading to Zayne Anderson's second interception of the day.

Clifford would hit Heath on an out route to gain confidence before second-year Running Back Emanuel Wilson would follow the huge duo of linemen in Kadeem Telfort and Caleb Jones on a nice gain on back-to-back plays. Someone on defense would step in on the next two plays, forcing an incompletion and a quick throw for a short gain only. When the media finally got a glance at who came through both times, it was none other than rookie linebacker Edgerrin Cooper. Cooper, who many expect to be in the mix for starting Linebacker alongside Quay Walker, has been a standout through the offseason thus far.

With the first-string offense back in, Jordan Love would fire two touchdowns, one to Dontayvion Wicks and the other to Jayden Reed, both of which went up and won the high point to make great catches. After all the coaches needed to see in that drill for day one, the Packers would move into their final drill of the day, which was two minutes.

Two Minute Drill

The defense stepped up big in the first-string battles. Forcing a turnover on downs right out of the gate as an odd throw from Love, and excellent coverage from Javon Bullard on third down, and Carrington Valentine on fourth down would make the stop. As for the second string, Clifford would start it off short to Heath. Heath and Sims would make two receptions short as the clock ticked to keep the ball moving. With 20 seconds left from the twenty-nine-yard-line, Clifford would throw it away. With eleven seconds left, Clifford would hit Heath for a short gain and get out of bounds to stop the clock. Third down and six from the twenty-five would see something Clifford couldn't escape all day: a THIRD interception from Safety Zayne Anderson. Anderson would get himself a hat trick all on Clifford as the defense would win the two-minute drill and shut down the high-flying offense all day.

That would end the first day of minicamp, and my players of the day would include the following.

Offense - Jordan Love, Romeo Doubs, Jayden Reed, MarShawn Lloyd

Defense - Zayne Anderson, Javon Bullard, Carrington Valentine, Brenton Cox

Day Two Recap

Returning to Special Teams on day two, the Packers love to find valuable guys who can both play their own position and contribute on Special Teams. Every player took part in some form of Special Teams except the Offensive line, Defensive line, Quarterbacks, Quay Walker, Christian Watson, as well as Romeo Doubs. Everyone else took part in either Kickoff, Kickoff return, Punt, or Punt Return.

After Special Teams, it was time to get into team time. Love seemed to get off on the right foot on day two, hitting Dontayvion Wicks, who made an impressive catch to start the drive. As for the defense, in between a few of those throws, they'd see Stokes and Enagbare with a tackle for loss on MarShawn Lloyd on the second play, then an Edgerrin Cooper sack on Sean Clifford in the two's. Coming back around to the ones, Love would then hit Christian Watson, Romeo Doubs, Bo Melton, and MarShawn Lloyd on the next drive.

For the defense, Rashan Gary beat new offensive lineman Andre Dillard for a sack on the second play of the new drive. Following the Gary sack, MarShawn Lloyd, off a screen from Love, made a one-handed catch and went for twenty yards, followed by Romeo Doubs, making his mark with a nice pickup from Love. Second-year Quarterback Seanpickupord would hit the field next. Arron Mosby beat first-round pick Jordan Morgan for a sack on the first play, and Clifford would throw his fourth interception of the minicamp to Robert Rochell following that play.

"Move The Ball' Drill

In the drill that states the goal in its name, Love would come out and fire to Watson for a big gain to start it off. After that, Eric Wilson would stuff AJ Dillon on a swing pass, and then Brenton Cox and Karl Brooks would stuff Dillon on a run again. On fourth down, Love would hit Heath for a first down and then hit Romeo Doubs for a big gain as the offense started to roll. Nice gains from Wicks, Lloyd, and Reed would follow until the coaches would end the drive there.

Deslin Alexander sacked Clifford on his first play of the two, and Clifford threw to no one on the following play. Clifford has had a rough two days, it appears. KeShawn Banks keeps the momentum on the defensive side with a sack of Pratt following the Clifford throw, which leads to a two-minute drill.

Two-Minute-Drill Day 2 Scenario - Down 20-18, ball at own 25, 1:18 on the game clock, one timeout.

Love would start strong, hitting Doubs short, but threw one behind Wicks over the middle. Reed would get open, and Love fired a strike over the middle to him as the clock would continue to run. Tight End Luke Musgrave would get open on a deep out for a 14-yard reception and get out of bounds. With forty-one seconds left from the opposite thirty-nine, Love would escape after his first down ball was batted down and get out of bounds for a pickup of seven. Third and three with no time left, Love would hit Doubs for a first down, before an illegal formation on the offense would halt things on the next play. Back-to-back false starts would push them back even further. The clock should have been run off, but they allow Jack Podlesny on, and he hits the "game-winning" field goal. The offense was on a roll but got sloppy in the basics at the end of this two-minute drill.

Second String

Clifford would now lead out the second-string offense for his shot, which was very short. He would hit Stanley for six, then get sacked, forcing the timeout. Jonathan Ford would bat down Clifford's ball on third down, and on fourth and nine, Clifford would be pressured by an Edgerrin Cooper blitz and throw complete but short of the marker. Pratt would come out and have things go poorly for him, as well as the result from a false start, and then Melton would drop a ball before the team moved into a loud field goal drill.

Loud Field Goals!!!

The Packers have three kickers and possibly a fourth on the way right now if they sign Jake Bates, Anders Carlson, Greg Joseph, and Jack Podlesny. In the loud field goal period, there was loud music, teammates screaming, and doing everything they could to distract a kicker to simulate game kicks. Podlesny would start wide left before Joesph, Carlson, and then a second chance Podlesny would rattle off five straight makes (Podlesny 1/2, Joseph 2/2, and Carlson 2/2). This would end our second and final day of minicamp as my players of the day would include the following.

Offense - Jordan Love, Marshawn Lloyd, Jayden Reed, Malik Heath

Defense - Edgerrin Cooper, Eric Wilson, Brenton Cox, Rashan Gary

Special Teams - Greg Joseph, Anders Carlson

As minicamp comes to a close, all three phases have work to do, but that's expected, which is why the work started this early into the offseason. The good news and something to be excited about from this Packers' team is that they are young, fast, and hungry to chase that Super Bowl. With talent on both sides of the ball, they should be right in the mix to make that dream a reality.

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