GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Vince Biegel, one of the rookie draft picks the Green Bay Packers are counting on to bolster their pass rush this season, isn’t ready for the start of training camp and will start on the physically unable to perform list.
So will cornerback Demetri Goodson, but that isn’t much of a surprise considering he blew out his knee in late November.
Biegel, a fourth-round pick from Wisconsin, underwent surgery on his right foot in May shortly after the rookie minicamp. It’s the same injury that kept him out of two games last season for the Badgers.
Biegel wouldn't say whether his surgery last fall was a quick fix or if he came back too soon.
"I would do the exact same thing all over again," he said Thursday. "It’s the game of football, injuries happen. Obviously it’s a violent game, so making sure that my foot is healthy moving forward is definitely very important, and that’s why I’m listening to my doctors, listening to my coaches and doing what they tell me to do.
"I think it was just more of we wanted to get it done the right way. That’s what we did, and it feels great. I’m already ahead of schedule, so being able to stay on the course of action, be patient is the most important thing, and make sure that things are fully healed before I step on the field."
Biegel said he does not think he has a chronic foot injury that will recur.
"I think this is kind of a freak kind of thing, and being able to get it fixed the right way and making sure this doesn’t come back, doesn’t linger on, is definitely important for the rest of my career," he said.
The Packers picked Biegel to add to their outside linebacker group after they lost Julius Peppers and Datone Jones in free agency, leaving Clay Matthews and Nick Perry as their only proven returning pass-rushers from the outside linebacker spot.
“I don’t have to worry like we’re playing games, but we understand any time a player at a position where you do lose veteran players, you don’t want that to happen,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said before Thursday’s first training camp practice. “I’m confident in the other guys and really the fact that we’ve got to get Vince back to 100 percent, so we have time.”
McCarthy said Biegel could return in “a few weeks.” The coach gave no timeline on Goodson, who has been a career backup.
"Obviously disappointed to start on the PUP, but that’s kind of to be expected," Biegel said. "Just following the protocol and things that Green Bay is having me do, following the course of action, and I’ve been attacking my rehab and this whole offseason. Stayed here in Green Bay this summer, did my workouts, all my rehab here, so everything is going very, very well. The foot feels great. I was able to go into [the Hutson Center] and cut on it, run on it. Just following the course of action, taking the time and listening to the trainers, listening to the doctors, doing what they tell me to do."
The Packers got good news on starting center Corey Linsley, who passed his physical Wednesday and will practice after missing the entire offseason program following ankle surgery. Linsley missed the first half of the 2016 season because of a hamstring injury. Even though the ankle, which he first hurt in 2015, didn't cause him to miss any games last year, he elected to have surgery after the season.
"I do feel like before I hurt my ankle, even after that, I was playing decent, playing pretty good," Linsley said. "But yeah, obviously it did [impact him last season] a little bit. But I’m excited to be healthy. I’m excited to get back into it. I’ve had to adjust my technique due to the injuries and adjust some certain things that I did. So I’m excited to get back in the groove of things."