The Green Bay Packers believe in their own players and over the years, we have come to know why.
This past offseason, general manager Ted Thompson decided to take a flyer on re-signing Don Barclay, an offensive lineman, who has started 23 career games for the Packers and saw the field in 23 others.
The move didn’t make many headlines. In fact, some observers might have even rolled their eyes due to the way Barclay played last season. Due to injury, the former West Virgina product, started five times at right or left tackle and in truth, it wasn’t pretty.
Yet, to be fair, Barclay was also coming off a pretty serious knee injury that he suffered back in 2014 and with some players, it can take some time to get fully recovered.
Well, whether it’s due to improved health or the urgency that comes with knowing his NFL career is on the line, Barclay has had the look of his old self in Packers’ training camp and according to Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, he had a really impressive night on Monday.
Here’s were the legendary reporter’s observations, which were published by Packersnews.com.
On Monday night, he earned a draw with NT Kenny Clark and beat DE Mike Pennel as a center in the one-on-one drill before stopping the bull rush of OLB Datone Jones from right tackle to earn another decision. It improved his record to 7-2-1 in three installments of the pass-rush drill. He’s 2-0 against DE Mike Daniels, 3-0 against Jones.
While Barclay hasn’t made it onto any of my 53-man roster projections for Green Bay, that’s because it wasn’t expected that he would regain his old form. Certainly, Barclay will need to keep this up for the remainder of camp and throughout the preseason to cement his status, but right now he is looking good.
Barclay has definitely outplayed Matt Rotheram, a center/guard, who Green Bay liked enough to give a raise on the practice squad at the end of last season.
Yet, event though a guy like Rotheram can offer position versatility, it’s nowhere near what Barclay can offer, as the fifth-year man has seen time at all five positions on the offensive line just like he did back in 2014 before his injury.
Again, the Packers are still in their training-camp infancy, but if Barclay can maintain this level of play throughout the month of August, he will be a strong bet to be on the 53-man roster come September.