Ahman Green and Brady Poppinga each took another step toward the season opener by taking part in their first team drills in full pads during Thursday night's practice at Clarke Hinkle Field.
Green, who is coming back from a ruptured quadriceps, took the first handoff in each of the the 11-on-11 periods. The veteran running back took part in a handful of plays and ran hard.
Poppinga, coming off a torn ACL in his knee last December, played strong-side linebacker with the second and third units during 11-on-11 segments and also in 7-on-7 drills.
The Green Bay Packers released wide receiver Leo Bookman and offensive lineman Wayne Lucier today. To take their roster spots, the Packers signed rookie free agent defensive backs Antonio Malone and Jeremy Modkins.
Malone (6-0, 188-pounds) was a three-year starter at cornerback for Toledo. He originally signed with the Detroit Lions in May. Along with his 38 tackles (20 solo) last season, Malone returned his lone 2005 interception 60 yards for a touchdown. The Packers have assigned him jersey No. 20.
A safety, Modkins (6-0, 197) earned second-team all-conference honors as a senior at Texas Christian, helping the Horned Frogs to a victory in the 2005 Houston Bowl over Iowa State. With Modkins contributing 67 tackles (44 solo) and three interceptions, TCU finished ninth in the final coaches poll and No. 11 in the Associated Press rankings. A three-year starter and four-year letterman at TCU, Modkins was a quarterback in high school. He originally signed with the Cleveland Browns but was released in June. Modkins is No. 42 on the Packers’ roster.
Bookman had been out of football the last three years while competing in track at the University of Kansas. He was signed as a free agent in April by the Packers.
Bookman has excellent speed (4.2 40-yard dash in workouts), but he had trouble catching the football in practices. It didn't help that he sustained a sprained right ankle on the first day of training camp, causing him to miss a number of practices.
Lucier signed a free agent contract with the Packers in February. He was out of football last year, but spent his first two seasons in the league with the New York Giants. He sustained an ankle injury late last week and did not play in Green Bay's exhibition game Saturday against San Diego.
A number of players were held out of the morning practice for precautionary reasons. Safety Marquand Manuel (calf), tight end Bubba Franks (knee), running back Ahman Green (quad), linebacker Brady Poppinga (knee) did not practice in the morning. They all returned for the evening practice.
Wide receiver Robert Ferguson (heel) also did not practice. He injured his heel Saturday in the preseason game against San Diego, then aggravated it in practice on Monday. He suited up for the evening practice but was limited.
Others who did not practice Tuesday included linebacker Kevin Schimmelmann (foot), fullback A.J. cornerbacks Will Blackmon (foot), Mike Hawkins (knee) and Patrick Dendy (ankle), running back Samkon Gado (groin), defensive tackle Kenderick Allen (abdominal), safety Atari Bigby (hand), and cornerback Therrian Fontenot (hip).
-- Former Packers general manager Ron Wolf was at practice Tuesday night.
-- Kickers Billy Cundiff and Dave Rayner were each 5 of 5 in field goal attempts from distances of 43, 27 (twice), 31 and 37 yards.
-- The Packers tried a number of different combinations of kickoff returners. Noah Herron and Najeh Davenport were followed by Greg Jennings and Corey Rodgers. Arliss Beach, Ahmad Carroll and Ben Brown also practiced returning kickoffs. Rodgers and Brown had the only two drops.
-- Charles Woodson intercepted a pass from Brett Favre during an 11-on-11 drill. A.J. Hawk was in the right place at the right time, picking off a pass from Aaron Rodgers that deflected off wide receiver Chad Lucas' hands.