5 Things Learned at Packers Family Night – August 5

GREEN BAY – The Packers held their annual Family Night practice Friday in front of 50,112 fans at Lambeau Field.

Here are five things we learned.

1. The No. 1 defense wasn’t doing anything easy, and rookie LB Quay Walker was showing up a lot in that regard.

The Packers’ starting offense made its share of plays going 11-on-11, but it was hard to find much rhythm because the defense wasn’t giving up much on the field or in the running game.

Inside linebacker and first-round draft pick Quay Walker helped set an early tone by meeting Aaron Jones at the line of scrimmage on an outside run play. Then, Walker came close to intercepting a pass at the goal line, but Aaron Rodgers passed a needle to tight end Marcedes Lewis with Walker buzzing past and fumbled the ball.

Later, Walker made another good play on the floor, reaching laterally to cover AJ Dillon on a control pass and staying in a balanced position so he wouldn’t be outdone by Dillon’s inside move after the catch. There were no live tackles, but Walker clearly would have wrapped the big running back in open space.

The stretch where Rodgers seemed to get things going, with three straight completions to Allen Lazard, Randall Cobb and Dominique Dafney, the defense rallied to stop the next two plays. Walker had decent coverage of Amari Rodgers on a shallow cross that was sketchy, and then a deep pass to Lazard didn’t connect.

“One thing we’ve challenged our defense on is just consistency in stopping the run, and then I think they’ve done a good job of defending the pass and particularly deep balls and not giving up a lot of big plays down the field.” said head coach Matt LaFleur.

“Our forward seven can be pretty salty, so hopefully they’re improving our offense a lot.”

2. The offensive star of the night was rookie WR Samori Toure.

Toure got going early with a good fit and sliding catch on a Jordan Love end zone fade during one-on-one against defensive backs. Then, during 11-on-11 near the goal line, he made another nifty sliding catch in the corner off a pass from Danny Etling.

The big highlight came later on a deep pass from Love, when Toure got behind two defenders and caught the pass for a 50-plus-yard touchdown pass.

“I think he has very good body control and body movement,” LaFleur said of Toure. “He’s a smart guy who really works at it.”

Lazard added: “He definitely stepped up tonight.”

Fellow rookie Romeo Doubs once again made a surprising play, as he seems to do every day, this time with a contested catch on a one-on-one deep pass in the end zone against cornerback Kiondre Thomas. Though later at 11-on-11, Doubs proved that he is human, as he failed to corner a deep ball that seemed to bounce off his fingers.

“Really, all the rookies have done an outstanding job in the wide receiver room,” LaFleur said. “They’ve shown a lot of flashes. It will be interesting to see what happens next week in San Francisco.”

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