Packers Annual Checkup: Derek Sherrod
FOX Sports Wisconsin’s Paul Imig gives an in-depth statistical analysis and film study of every Packers player in his annual offseason checkup. Check every weekday through mid-April for his latest report.
Derek Sherrod, offensive lineman
Season stats: Eight games active (six offensive snaps total); one QB hurry allowed
ProFootballFocus.com season rating: minus-0.3
Best game: Week 13 loss at Detroit (played 6 offensive snaps; one QB hurry allowed; minus-0.3 PFF rating)
Worst game: n/a
Expectations at the start of the season: Low
Expectations were … Met
Looking live: Derek Sherrod missed the entire 2012 season while recovering from a broken leg that he suffered in December 2011. However, there was optimism within the Packers organization that Sherrod would be fully recovered in time for the team’s 2013 offseason training activities. "I hope he can work during the OTAs," coach Mike McCarthy said in February 2013. Offensive line coach James Campen said in May 2013 that Sherrod had participated in the individual player workouts (IPWs) and that Sherrod was "progressing along just fine." But, just days before training camp began in July, Sherrod was one of seven Green Bay players declared as physically unable to perform, so he was placed on the team’s preseason PUP list. "He’s confident; the medical staff feels good about the way he’s coming," McCarthy said of Sherrod on Aug. 12. "We’re trying to get him comfortable where he’s showing the explosion and ability to push through the rehab process." But as training camp concluded in late August, Sherrod was still not medically cleared. Therefore, he missed every training camp practice for the second consecutive year and once again began the regular season on the PUP list.
Upon further review: Being on the PUP list, Sherrod couldn’t practice until after Week 6. But as soon as he was allowed to, he did, making his return to the practice field Oct. 16. "I’ve been dreaming about it for a while," Sherrod said that day. "Just putting the jersey back on, putting the helmet back on, the cleats. Being out there with the rest of the fellas warming up, going through drills, practicing; it was a great day." On Nov. 5, Sherrod took another major step in his long road to recovery when the Packers activated him from the PUP list. "He’s competing to be part of the 46 (-man roster on game day)," McCarthy said. Sherrod did not make that cut in his first opportunity (Week 10). However, in Week 11, Sherrod was in uniform and on the sideline for the first time since December 2011, nearly two full years later. In that game on the road against the New York Giants, Sherrod was in on special teams during all field-goal attempts and extra points. "Thought he did a solid job," special teams coordinator Shawn Slocum said. "He was a little high. He’ll get better with it." Sherrod played six snaps on offense (his only offensive snaps all season) in Week 13 during the Packers’ blowout loss on Thanksgiving in Detroit.
Overall 2013 grade: C
Status for 2014: Ninety percent chance of being on the Packers’ active roster to begin the 2014 season. With Marshall Newhouse now with the Cincinnati Bengals and Don Barclay possibly competing to be Green Bay’s next starting center, Sherrod could be the No. 1 offensive-tackle option off the bench. He’ll compete for that role against Barclay, who struggled at center during the 2013 training camp. Sherrod is often mislabeled as a bust of a first-round draft pick. While he’s not come close to producing at the level of a player selected No. 32 overall, that can almost entirely be attributed to his devastating injury in 2011. Sherrod’s career may never have a chance to be what it could have been without the injury, though, and the Packers certainly aren’t expecting him to be a starter in 2014. But he’s still only going to be 25 years old throughout next season, and he has the size to be a good NFL player if fully healthy and confident. Sherrod will have to prove that he can do that within the context of a reserve role.
Next: Cornerback Sam Shields
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