GREEN BAY — It may end up being a game-time decision Sunday for some of the Green Bay Packers’ injured players — including offensive tackles David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga — but defensive lineman Mike Daniels left no doubt Friday: He is playing against the Dallas Cowboys.
“I’m ready to roll,” Daniels said.
Daniels, who dominated the line of scrimmage in the Packers’ Sept. 10 season-opening victory over Seattle, hasn’t played since aggravating a hip injury at Atlanta in Week 2, when he left the game on the opening series. He is officially listed as questionable, although there was no question at all in his mind.
“It feels good. It feels good. I felt good at practice running around, felt strong. So I’m just ready to roll,” Daniels said. “It’s been hard watching.”
Bulaga, who has only played in one game this season (vs. Cincinnati in Week 3), and Bakhtiari have yet to play a snap together this season. Bulaga is out because of a right ankle injury suffered during an Aug. 23 training-camp practice, and Bakhtiari due to a pulled hamstring late in the Packers’ win over the Seahawks. Both were in pads and listed as limited participants in Thursday’s practice — although it’s not known how much work they got during the 11-on-11 team periods — and officially listed as questionable on Friday’s injury report.
In prior weeks, including for the Packers’ most recent game Sept. 28 against Chicago, they were listed as doubtful.
“I’m happy with the progress that we’ve made health-wise,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Friday morning when asked about the tackles. “We’re getting better.”
Wide receiver Davante Adams, who suffered a concussion against the Bears and spent the night in the hospital as a result of linebacker Danny Trevathan’s helmet-to-helmet hit, remained in the concussion protocol and thus was not allowed to speak with reporters Friday. But, he was bounding around the locker room, using his iPhone and chatting with teammates and staffers Friday, and he did take part in portions of practice Wednesday and Thursday.
Last year, Adams suffered a concussion against the Cowboys on Oct. 16 and was cleared in time to play four days later against Chicago. He is also listed as questionable.
“Davante Adams is making progress but he still has not cleared the protocol,” McCarthy said. “I would say (Saturday) by the time we get on the plane would be a fair deadline.”
Meanwhile, running back Ty Montgomery, who confirmed he broke “multiple” ribs on his first carry against the Bears, declined to speak with reporters Friday. McCarthy said Montgomery did not take part in Thursday’s team periods in practice, meaning he’s almost surely out for Sunday. He’s listed as doubtful.
The only player ruled out was inside linebacker Joe Thomas, who was in a hard cast and using a scooter because of his ankle injury. Thomas said that the injury “is not as bad as it looks” and that he’ll get the cast off on Monday.
Clinton-Dix fined, will appeal
Safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix was fined $24,309 by the NFL for his hit on Bears wide receiver Joshua Bellamy. And Clinton-Dix was none too pleased.
“I’m always trying to take the best route when it comes to making tackles. To see a player of my caliber and the league should know that I would never try to intentionally try to hit somebody like that,” Clinton-Dix said Friday, adding that he is appealing the decision. “To get fined $25,000, it hurt my heart when I saw it in my locker (Thursday).
“We’ve just got to play both sides of the field and really understand what’s a defenseless player and the whole motive of that play and what happened.”
Bellamy caught a Mike Glennon pass across the middle during the first half of the Packers’ 35-14 win, then bent down as Clinton-Dix closed in to make the tackle. Unlike Trevathan, who led with his helmet, Clinton-Dix led with his shoulder and actually landed only a glancing blow with his elbow or forearm hitting Bellamy’s helmet.
“I was in action. I was a moving target, he was a moving target, at the last moment, he ducked, and I guess my shoulder rubbed against his shoulder and went up to his head,” Clinton-Dix said. “I just think it was a bad call. And on top of that to get fined $25K for a bad call, that’s unacceptable. I don’t know. The refs are trying to do their jobs, and it’s hard.
“Playing safety, you have to be ‘safe’ first. So the angles I take, my approach is a lot different, being as they have all these new rules in. You have to think before you make contact in a sport that is physical. I just don’t understand. It’s a mistake.”
Trevathan, meanwhile, had his two-game suspension cut in half to one game, so he will miss the Bears’ game against Minnesota on Monday night. He is suspended without pay, meaning he’ll lose a week’s paycheck of $117,647.06.