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Packers gearing up for sprint to the start with limited time to conduct training camp practices

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Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 9:21 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - On Thursday, Packers head coach Matt LaFleur talked about the team's acquisition of Swiss Army Knife John Lovett. The FB/HB also played QB in college and can do it all. And LaFleur wants a lot of players who can do a lot of things, especially this year when the team could lose players to COVID reserve at the drop of a hat.

"To your point, you just really don't know what the future holds with the COVID deal," LaFleur said. "But it gives you the ability to not be limited, necessarily, by your personnel. We always, as coaches, we have to adjust to who we have on game days. And we will always do that. But we feel like we have a lot of good moveable pieces, not only on offense but in all three phases.

While LaFleur would love for his players to be able to do a lot of things, he doesn't have a lot of time to teach them everything. The first padded practice is still not until August 17th. The team will have to be extra efficient with everything they do.

"I think the first two weeks here are a real good opportunity for us to ease into things before getting a little more physical when pads come on," said newcomer at right tackle Rick Wagner. "And definitely for me, I just have to put a lot of emphasis of when we do go out on the field because I didn't have OTA's."

Wagner, a West Allis native and former Wisconsin Badger came to Green Bay from Detroit in free agency. And in this odd year with no real offseason work, it might be hard to get an offensive lineman indoctrinated into LaFleur's outside zone running scheme. It would be hard, if Wagner hadn't run that design earlier in his career at Baltimore.

“In Baltimore we had some of best years running the outside zone,” Wagner said. “It’s something that takes all 11 guys to accomplish things with the running game like that. You definitely have to get off the ball as fast as you can and it’s up to the back to make the cut, but everybody has to be on the same page. I do feel comfortable with that system.”

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