Packers' center Linsley must keep the pace

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers' no-huddle machine stops for no one, even if one of the cogs goes missing.

So the loss of starting center JC Tretter, the man who was at the controls of the offensive line for the first three preseason games when the Packers’ no-huddle offense hummed along, will not slow down quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

So promised offensive line coach James Campen, whose job it will be over the next week and a half to get rookie center Corey Linsley up to speed -- literally in this case -- in the Packers' fast-paced offense.

"He will keep the pace," Campen vowed.

The Packers want to field the fastest offense in the NFL. Their goal is to run 75 plays per game. While much of that responsibility falls on Rodgers, the center plays his part, too. The sooner the center gets to the ball and gets the rest of the linemen set, the faster Rodgers can relay the signals to his receivers, running backs and tight ends.

"That is one of his requirements," Campen said. "Get over the ball. Let's get ready. Let's go.”

Luckily for Linsley, a fifth-round pick from Ohio State, he will have help. He will be surrounded by the Packers' two most experienced offensive linemen, guards T.J. Lang and Josh Sitton. They will assist with all of the protection adjustments that must be made at the line of scrimmage when running a no-huddle offense.

"I think he's going to be expected to play at a fast tempo," Rodgers said. "He's got cyborgs on both sides who know exactly what they're doing and what everybody is doing up front. Josh and T.J. are going to be very important to Corey playing as fast as possible, but we have a lot of trust in Corey."

It was going to be a difficult task to run the no-huddle offense in the season opener at Seattle no matter what given the noise at CenturyLink Stadium but with a rookie starter at center who may go the entire preseason without taking a game snap with Rodgers, it could be especially problematic.

In that regard, however, Linsley has one thing going for him: He has played center in loud stadiums before entering the NFL. Playing at Ohio State, he has experienced places like Michigan Stadium (which holds 109,901 fans) and Penn State's Beaver Stadium (107,282).

"I think he's had to do a lot of things without hearing," Campen said. "He'll be fine."