Injuries continue to mount for Packers

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By Tyler Dunne, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Tackle Don Barclay, considered a “sixth starter” by the Green Bay Packers, was carted off at Tuesday's practice with a knee injury.

He suffered the injury in a blitz period. Standing right behind the offensive line, coach Mike McCarthy said Barclay was caught in a “compromised position.”

“You don't want to see anybody get hurt,” McCarthy said. “Donny, they don't come any better than him. He's exactly what you're looking for. Somebody to emulate a Green Bay Packer, on and off the field, he's definitely one of your guys. We hope it's not serious.”

It'd be a significant blow to a Packers offensive line McCarthy believes could be his best unit to date.

Barclay originally made the team as an undrafted rookie in 2012 out of West Virginia and started four games at right tackle. In 2013, with Bryan Bulaga lost for the season and David Bakhtiari set at left tackle, Barclay started 14 games. He is considered a swing player on the offensive line, having gotten plenty of reps at tackle, guard and center.

Veteran Josh Sitton said after practice that Barclay brings “a ton of value” to Green Bay's front five.

“Typically, you don't get a sixth guy who can play that many positions,” Sitton said, “and has had that much experience with 20 games or so he has started. That'd be a big one if he's down, but hopefully it's nothing too serious.”

Right guard T.J. Lang didn't see the play himself, only the aftermath. Barclay was on the practice turf for several moments before sitting up and then finally being helped onto the cart.

Both starting guards stayed hopeful, but the scene at practice indicates a serious injury.

“He has played a lot of football,” Lang said. “He's got a lot of starts and he has gained a lot of experience. And he's doing a lot of good things for us. He's a guy who has been competing all year and he's a guy who can play multiple positions—and play them well.

“We're hoping for the best. We're hoping he can come back soon.”

Next in line at tackle would likely be 2011 first-round pick Derek Sherrod. Most of camp, Sherrod has worked at left tackle.

Sitton noted that on Monday he was just telling Lang that Sherrod was playing well at practice. He believes Sherrod has been “the best I've ever seen him” the last 3-4 practices. It's been a long road to recovery for Sherrod, who played six snaps last season.

“It's been big to have Derek back,” Lang said. “He's a guy who has had his injury struggles the past couple years. I think he has had a hell of a camp. He looks bigger, he looks stronger, he looks quicker. He's a guy that it's definitely good to have some insurance with him being that tackle, that third guy to fill in. He's having a hell of a camp, so he just needs to continue to get better and take steps.”

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