Staying in shape in the off-season is a requirement for all NFL players. Those who do not follow the healthy living habits that they practice during the season, will find that their time at training camp will be arduous and could cost them their position on the team. For the players on the Green Bay Packers team, the time is running out for them to get into shape before the July 30 start of training camp.
Training camp this year for the Packers will be different from past seasons. In a quote in an article on the Green Bay Packers website, veteran safety Morgan Burnett commented, “Once we get back, the tempo is going to pick up a little more.” He mentions that Coach McCarthy had advised the players that, “The pads are on, so guys are really going to be flying around. Coach made it loud and clear today. He was saying, ‘Enjoy your time off, enjoy your break, but once we get back, the train is rolling, and we’re starting fast.’”
Before training camp, the team holds OTA practices, but players are not required to attend. These organized team activities are less physical and more focused on technical aspects and player improvement. Training camp amps up the physical contact, and give the players the opportunity to show off their skills and abilities. Award winning running back for the Packers, Eddie Lacy, explains that there is a different element introduced to the field when the team is in full uniform. “Once you put pads on, things are different. It’s a lot harder, because it’s not just tagging off and you can’t just get your way, so we’ll see who’s physical and who’s not.”
Every play is a test of each player’s abilities and skill. Award winning and MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers commented in the article, that during training camp there is “not a lot of room for the mental errors” and “not a lot of grace period” when training camp begins. He and ten other veteran players with more than seven years experience with the Packers will not be partaking in the last day of training camp.
This new approach to team player mentoring is sure to bring the players closer as a team and gives the new players a chance to learn directly from some of the greatest players in the NFL today. With this new strategy at training camp, McCarthy is leading the Packers down the path to the Super Bowl as a team.
Will the Packers be in the mix for a playoff spot in 2015?
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