On Now
Coming Up
  • Mon., Dec. 22, 2014 5:15 PM - 5:30 PM CST Live McCarthy press conf. Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy will be available to the media in the Lambeau Field media auditorium.
  • Mon., Dec. 22, 2014 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM CST Lacy, Clinton-Dix appearance Packers Eddie Lacy and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix are scheduled to appear at the Big Red Kettle at Bay Park Square Mall on behalf of the Salvation Army bell-ringing campaign.
  • Tue., Dec. 23, 2014 1:10 PM - 1:25 PM CST Live McCarthy press conf. Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy will be available to the media in the Lambeau Field media auditorium.
  • Wed., Dec. 24, 2014 1:15 PM - 1:30 PM CST Live McCarthy press conf. Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy will be available to the media in the Lambeau Field media auditorium.
  • Fri., Dec. 26, 2014 12:15 PM - 12:30 PM CST Live McCarthy press conf. Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy will be available to the media in the Lambeau Field media auditorium.
  • Sat., Dec. 27, 2014 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM CST Alumni Appearance (Flanagan, Rivera) Mike Flanagan and Marco Rivera are scheduled to appear at the Packers Pro Shop on Saturday, December 27th, from 2:30-4 p.m.

News

Print
RSS

Other Rodgers from Cal likes Packers offense, too

Posted May 20, 2014

Third-round pick happy to be playing tight end again

GREEN BAY—A year ago at this time, Richard Rodgers was in the process of losing 30 pounds so he could play wide receiver.

This past weekend at rookie orientation in Green Bay, he was glad to be back at his old gig.

“I like playing tight end,” said Rodgers, whom the Packers drafted in the third round out of California. “I missed it last year when I was playing receiver. I realized how much I liked blocking in-line and being closer to people and not being out in space and blocking little guys.”

Rodgers didn’t exactly enjoy becoming a “little guy” last year, but he did so at the behest of Cal’s new coaching staff so he could play. He wasn’t given a choice.

Getting back up into the 260-pound neighborhood has made him feel more like himself, and seeing on the Packers’ offensive film last weekend the many ways tight ends are used in Mike McCarthy’s system has him fired up about what lies ahead.

“They flex them out, sometimes they keep them in the backfield, they do everything pretty much,” Rodgers said. “It’s a lot of learning, but you have to be willing to do that.”

Rodgers is willing, and in a perfect world, he’ll be able to combine his earlier college experience as a tight end with his exposure to playing receiver to become the hybrid, multi-use weapon regularly featured in Green Bay’s offense.

It will be a process, though, and that process for Rodgers starts with re-learning all the fundamentals that applied to his first two seasons in college as more of a pure tight end.

“I just need to work on a lot of things, a lot of little things,” he said. “Whatever I can take technically from the coaches – getting your first step in the ground, your second step, making contact, helmet placement, things like that – just the little things help you playing tight end.

“It’s a little bit like starting over.”

Depending on what happens with Jermichael Finley, the Packers could be close to starting over at the position soon enough.

Veteran Andrew Quarless was re-signed and special-teams ace Ryan Taylor is back, but the long-term future at tight end could depend on developmental prospects such as Rodgers.

Brandon Bostick and Jake Stoneburner return after seeing their first pro action last year, while Rodgers joins the newcomers, who include undrafted rookies Justin Perillo and Colt Lyerla. An intriguing athlete and pass-catcher, Lyerla was signed following a rookie weekend tryout after being passed over during the draft and rookie free agency due to various off-the-field issues. Based solely on football talent, he likely would have been drafted well ahead of Rodgers, who went 98th overall.

Given the investment the Packers made in him, Rodgers will be squarely in the mix as the depth chart gets sorted out through OTAs and training camp.

He’ll get to catch passes for the first time from his namesake from Cal and talk again about his dad’s involvement in “The Play” from the 1982 Cal-Stanford game, but none of that will alter his focus.

He’s here to grow back into his old self, at his old job, and see how he fits in this offense.

“That excites me,” he said. “I want to learn as much as I can about the game. I think the coaches here do a great job teaching, and I love it here.”

Another draft pick feature:

 
blog comments powered by Disqus

You May Also Be Interested in...

Recent Videos

  • Packers clinch playoff berth, aim for North title

    (3:59) Posted 1 hour ago

    The Green Bay Packers gutted out a 20-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, clinching a playoff berth and earning a chance to lock up the NFC North crown and a first-round playoff bye.

  • Aaron Rodgers: A good win for us

    (8:12) Posted 2 hours ago

    Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was available to the media on Sunday, Dec. 21, following the Packers 20-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium.

  • Mike McCarthy: It started and ended with defense

    (6:12) Posted 2 hours ago

    Green Bay Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy was available to the media on Sunday, Dec. 21, following the Packers 20-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium.