NFL Lockout Watch, Day 66: NFL Player Workouts Receiving Mixed Reviews
There has been a "mixed review of the potential value" of the NFL players-only practices that have been held this month, according to sources cited by Don Banks of SI.com. In theory, players “working on their offseason conditioning together while keeping their skills sharp and their sense of team camaraderie alive and well sounds like a win-win situation.” But the impact of players-only workouts “may be limited and rather selective.” Several players “declined to discuss their team's players-only workouts, not wanting to add any more debate to the issue of the lockout or the league's ongoing labor fight.” Saints QB Drew Brees has led his teammates in workouts at Tulane Univ., and the Saints have “set the standard for organization amid the confusion of recent weeks.” The team's workouts “routinely have been well-attended.” But whether that “translates into any real advantage once football resumes remains to be seen.” Saints LB Jonathan Vilma, who has been attending the practices, said that he “saw no downside to the sessions.” Banks noted the “risk of injury that could come out of these unsupervised workouts looms large in the mind of an NFL general manager,” as well as “two veteran players agents who echoed his concerns.” The GM said, "Quite honestly, I'm waiting for the first ACL tear that happens and then we'll see if anyone talks about how great this whole workout program is for these young guys” (SI.com, 5/13).
READY TO GET TO WORK: Titans draftee Jake Locker said that he has “already been in the playbook he received” from the team and has been “working out and throwing to receivers on a regular basis.” In Nashville, Jim Wyatt noted Locker in the near future “plans to return” to the city to “work out with his new teammates, whether the lockout is lifted by then or not” (Nashville TENNESSEAN, 5/15). In Philadelphia, Jeff McLane noted Eagles RB LeSean McCoy, like “some of his teammates, has passed the time during the NFL lockout by training in other locales.” McCoy “spent much of the offseason in Miami,” but said that he would join QB Michael Vick and “other Eagles if informal workouts get off the ground" this week (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 5/15). Vick confirmed that the team will "meet for some drills" this week, and “about 15 players may attend” (PHILLY.com, 5/13). Packers G Josh Sitton said that the team “might get together as a players-only group, especially for the quarterbacks and receivers.” But in Milwaukee, Lori Nickel noted it is “still only in a discussion phase” (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 5/14).