The Green Bay Packers offense needs their best offensive lineman, David Bakhtiari, healthy this season. Head coach Matt LaFleur gave an interesting answer about where Bakhtiari is on his road to recovery before the 2023 season.
The Packers have an inexperienced starter at quarterback in Jordan Love. Love is throwing to a bunch of rookie and second-year players. For the offense to be successful this season, the Packers need to lean into their veteran offensive and skilled backfield.
Bakhtiari battled his way from an ACL injury back onto the field last season. However, LaFleur described Bakhtiari’s situation as “fluid” last season. Meaning the Packers waited until gameday to decide if he would play or not in a given week. Bakhtiari also had to miss some time due to his appendectomy.
The Green Bay Packers are modifying David Bakhtiari’s practice
Not much has changed in the fluid department for Bakhtiari before training camp. According to Zach Kruse with the Packers Wire, LaFleur said the Packers would modify their star left tackle’s practice regimen at training camp:
“He’ll definitely be modified, quite a bit,” LaFleur said. “It will be fluid. Just the communication with him, the medical staff, myself, the coaches. We know what type of player he is, he’s proved himself. Any time you have a veteran player with that much experience, then you’re willing to do that. You want the best for David, because when he’s out there and playing, we’re a better football team. It’s going to be fluid.”
LaFleur said the Packers have four practices this week, and he wouldn’t anticipate Bakhtiari doing much of anything during the team’s second practice on Thursday.
The update makes sense. There’s no reason to push Bakhtiari too hard in the preseason. He’s too critical to the Packers during the regular season.
Will Bakhtiari ever be back to normal?
However, it is troubling that it appears Bakhtiari will never be 100 percent ready to go. The Packers and Bakhtiari know his knee is still a liability, and there’s no relief from the worry he might re-injure himself this year. It looks like that worry will continue through the rest of his career.
The lack of practices didn’t hurt Bakhtiari’s play much last season. He was still the Packers’ best offensive lineman when he was active on Sundays. That’ll still likely be the case this season.
If he can stay healthy.
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