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MOORE: Packers need Glenn to catch on

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David Moore

David Moore has been the senior football writer for FOX Sports since Aug. 2005. He appears weekly on the FSN Baseball Report and MLB on FOX. One more line lorem ipsum dolor sit amet e pluribus unum.

 
   
 

GREEN BAY, Wis.

apologized.

There are worse sins than dropping a pass on a simple, five-yard route during the grind of two-a-days. Ask the New England .

But this isn¿t New England. It¿s Green Bay in July, where football is revered, the fans are forgiving and Glenn has a fresh start.

He jogs over to quarterback to say he¿s sorry.

¿Terry, I ain¿t worried about it,¿¿ Favre says. ¿The least thing I¿m worried about with you is your hands.¿¿

The hands aren¿t a concern. The tendency to distance himself from teammates and coaches, the chronic depression, recurring hamstring and ankle injuries ... this is just some of the baggage Glenn lugged over from the .

Glenn needs the to repair his image and get his once-promising career back on track. The need Glenn to provide the consistent, big-play threat they have lacked at wide receiver in recent years. It¿s a relationship built on mutual need.

Nearly five months into this honeymoon, all signs are positive. Head coach Mike Sherman is convinced Glenn is doing all he can to make this work. But when a player is one violation away from being suspended for a year under the provisions of the NFL¿s substance abuse program, you don¿t get too far ahead of yourself.

¿I really think you can evaluate these types of situations better during the course of the season when adversity strikes rather than in the preseason when everyone is patting us on the back and making everyone feel good,¿¿ Sherman said.

These days, Glenn finds himself in the midst of a giant group hug administered by the and their fans. Green Bay is more than a week away from its first preseason game, and Favre already calls Glenn, ¿the best pure receiver that I¿ve ever played with.¿¿

Give Glenn a route, show him the defense and Favre marvels that the receiver knows immediately how the pattern should be run. He has a feel for the game and the explosive ability to exploit it.

¿There¿s no reason he can¿t catch 100 balls if he stays healthy,¿¿ Favre said. ¿I¿ve told him that.

¿He comes here with a clean slate. Everyone here wants him to be good.¿¿ What¿s more, they need him to be good.

A total of 25 receivers had at least 1,000 yards last season. None of them wore a Green Bay uniform. For the past two seasons, running back has led the club in receptions.

When a running back is a bigger part of your passing game than the wide receivers — St. Louis and being the high-powered exception — it usually means you don¿t have the speed on the perimeter to stretch the defense.

Favre may have the strongest arm in the league. Yet the last two seasons, he¿s become more of a dink-and-dunk quarterback to fit the talent around him. He keeps throwing underneath the defense because none of his receivers can consistently beat it deep.

Why not convert Barry Bonds into a singles hitter to improve his average? Go ahead and tell Kobe Bryant to give the ball up in the fourth quarter so someone else can have a chance to win games.

The have been a productive offense the last few years, but they haven¿t been an explosive one. You need to be explosive to beat the . Favre can do explosive. He just needs a little help.

He needs Glenn and the rapid development of and first round pick Javon Walker. Those three replace , and in the ' scheme.

¿The group of guys they had here last year, I thought, were pretty good,¿¿ Glenn said. ¿I don¿t know what it was they were missing.

¿Whatever it was, I¿m just hoping I can fill that void.¿¿

Last season was pretty much null and void for Glenn. The league suspended him for four games for missing a mandatory drug test. The withheld part of his $11.5 million signing bonus and eventually banned him from their playoff run for, ¿conduct detrimental to the team.¿¿

There were arguments, nasty accusations on both sides, grievances and a lawsuit Glenn filed against the league that was later dropped. While the were in New Orleans beating the in the Super Bowl, he was at home in Columbus, Ohio watching on TV. New England couldn¿t wait to unload him after the season.

That¿s why it¿s so interesting to hear Glenn talk about how, ¿the atmosphere here (Green Bay) is lovely.¿¿ He¿s grateful that the wanted him, fearing he would dangle on the open market and wind up somewhere he didn¿t want by process of elimination.

In Favre, he¿s found a quarterback he can talk to — something he never had in New England with .

¿I love the guy,¿¿ Glenn said of Favre.

Glenn showed his commitment after the trade by driving the nine-and-a-half hours from Columbus to Green Bay — he doesn¿t like to fly — to attend the team¿s voluntary workouts. He takes part in the tradition of hopping on a kid¿s bike and pedaling the two from the stadium to the practice field even though he¿s been cleared to take a van and arrive at the field early for additional stretching. Glenn has spoken at a D.A.R.E. program and made himself available to charitable organizations in the area.

¿He¿s opened himself up to the experience, and I think he¿s enjoying it,¿¿ Sherman said.

So far, the have walked the fine line of supporting Glenn without smothering him. He and Sherman have already had discussions about how they will handle the inevitable disagreements and stress that spring from the regular season.

¿He¿ll get mad at me and I¿ll get mad at him,¿¿ Sherman said. ¿As long as we communicate, we will get things fixed.¿¿

Glenn appreciates the fact Sherman and the team doesn¿t baby him. He said the did at times, and he didn¿t respond well.

When asked if the are taking a risk based on his behavior last season, Glenn¿s temper flares briefly. He talks about how miserable he was, about how people don¿t understand that the situation had to unfold the way it did for him to leave.

When asked if he has any regrets about last season Glenn sighs, then pauses for six or seven seconds before answering.

¿I regret it a little bit because I wish I was there with the guys who won the Super Bowl,¿¿ Glenn said. ¿That¿s got to be a great feeling.

¿I had been there for all of those years, the losing seasons, the ups and downs. You want to feel what it is to go through that then get on top. That¿s the only part I regret, not being able to play with those guys. Other than that, to me, it felt like it had to happen.¿¿

Glenn appears content, and vows the hyper-extended right knee that has kept him out of practice the last few days is minor. The are encouraged. The foundation for a solid relationship is in place.

¿I¿m here for a reason,¿¿ Glenn said. ¿This is the best place for me. I didn¿t like New England any more. There were good people there. Great fans. It just wasn¿t for me. I needed a change.

¿This is a good situation.¿¿ David Moore can be reached at his e-mail address, dmoore@foxsports.com.

Tagged: Bills, Lions, Packers, Rams, Patriots, Texans, Robert Ferguson, Brett Favre, Ahman Green, Marshall Faulk, Drew Bledsoe

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