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Minicamp report: Packers expected to be on course

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GREEN BAY, Wis. — As has been a spring tradition in Green Bay the last several years, the team’s three-day minicamp will wind up being only two days of on-field work.

Head coach Mike McCarthy announced after the Packers’ first practice of the mandatory minicamp on Tuesday that the scheduled workout Wednesday has been scrapped.

In its place, players and staff will embark on a private team function.

The nature of what has been an annual team-bonding outing — such as bowling, dodgeball and clay shooting — was not disclosed. However, McCarthy strongly hinted it would be a day on the golf course.

“The opportunity our players will have (Wednesday) will be in groups of four or five,” McCarthy said. “They’ll ride in a cart with (quarterback) Aaron Rodgers or someone they’ve never had a conversation with. It’s about culture.”

The Packers will wrap up the minicamp and their offseason program Thursday with an open practice.

–Tuesday’s opening practice presented more encouragement, with the Packers working toward getting healthy by the start of training camp in late July.

Casey Hayward, a top candidate to fill the starting vacancy at cornerback opposite Sam Shields, participated in individual drills. Hayward had been sidelined most of the spring after suffering a foot injury.

Pro Bowl receiver Jordy Nelson picked up where he left off last week in organized team activities by getting individual work as well. Nelson underwent hip surgery shortly after last season ended in January.

Joining Nelson and the rest of the receivers on the field at the end of the offseason is rookie Ty Montgomery. The third-round draft pick from Stanford was allowed to rejoin the team last week for the first time in more than a month.

Montgomery had to wait until Stanford’s academic year ended before he could practice again.

“He had a very good practice Friday (the final day of OTAs), and I thought he had another good practice (Tuesday),” coach Mike McCarthy said. “He does some things very natural. He’s picked (the offense) up really quick, especially for someone who hasn’t been here.”

–Outside linebackers Mike Neal and Nick Perry continued to be held out of practice. They have spent the spring recuperating from ailments that cropped up last season, including a nagging shoulder injury for Perry.

–The Packers ushered in minicamp by having all of their draft picks this year under contract.

The last to be signed Tuesday was cornerback Damarious Randall, the team’s first-round selection.

Green Bay entered the minicamp with 89 players — one below the maximum — after it cut undrafted rookie guard Marcus Reed on Monday.


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