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Packers brace for bad news on Bryan Bulaga's kneeSubmitted: 08/04/2013
Story By Milwaukee Journal Sentinal

GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers were hoping for the best while fearing the worst Sunday on knee damage suffered by left tackle Bryan Bulaga.

Sources said Bulaga was hurt at some point during the intra-squad scrimmage Saturday night at Lambeau Field.

He was walking afterward and was seen in the middle of the team's huddle after the scrimmage.

However, Bulaga reported a problem with one of his knees while in the locker room and received treatment. The players were off Sunday, when the medical staff continued to run tests in an attempt to determine the extent of the damage.

Sources said the Packers had concern that the injury was a torn ligament and would turn out to be season-ending.

Bulaga played 30 snaps from scrimmage during the full-contact practice. He took a nasty fall on the first series and got up slowly, and he appeared to be a bit gimpy and limped to a degree at various other times.

Still, Bulaga didn't miss a turn with the No. 1 offensive line.

Late in the practice, he lined up as the right wing on the field-goal protection team for one kick before tight end D.J. Williams replaced him for the bulk of the competition between Mason Crosby and Giorgio Tavecchio.

Bulaga, 24, has been performing well at left tackle, his new position after being shifted there from right tackle during the off-season.

If the injury is significant, the Packers would have two options.

They could move right tackle Marshall Newhouse back to left tackle, where he played all 1,103 snaps in 2012 and started 13 games in 2011.

Or they could keep Newhouse at right tackle and start rookie David Bakhtiari, their impressive fourth-round draft choice, at left tackle. Bakhtiari alternated with Newhouse at right tackle in the scrimmage and didn't have an obvious bad play in his 31 snaps.

Don Barclay, the late-season starter at right tackle a year ago, has focused on center and right guard in the last week.

Andrew Datko, a second-year tackle, doesn't appear to have made much progress this summer.

Tackle Derek Sherrod remains on the physically unable to perform list with a leg injury dating to December 2011. The coaches say Sherrod is close to being able to practice, but he has done nothing on the field yet.

Bulaga suffered a sprained left knee in September 2011 and sat out two games. Three months later, he suffered a sprained left kneecap and missed two more games.

Last season, Bulaga suffered a small fracture in his left hip capsule and was sidelined for the final nine games.


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