ESPN: Nick Barnett Done For The Year
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported yesterday that Packers middle linebacker Nick Barnett will miss the remainder of the 2010 season. Barnett left Sunday’s win over the Lions with a wrist injury, but returned to the game with a cast over his right wrist.
Barnett’s wrist will require surgery, but the question is when. The veteran is seeking a second opinion on Friday in hopes that he will be able to put off the surgery until after the season. If the Packers shut down Barnett for the year, it would be his second season-ending surgery in three years.
With Brandon Chillar’s shoulder ailing, the Packers are suddenly thin at the middle linebacker position. When the team faces the Washington Redskins this weekend, A.J. Hawk and Desmond Bishop will be the starters. The duo are plenty capable of holding down the defense, but should something happen to either of them, the team may find itself in an interesting predicament. They could move one of their outside linebackers inside or elevate former Arena League Football player Maurice Simpkins from the practice squad to prepare for Sunday’s game.
The circumstances are unfortunate, but Packers fans are finally getting to see what the team has in Desmond Bishop. The 4th-year player out of California has been eager to get on the field, but his play has been characterized as high-risk, high-reward. In other words, he makes some big plays, but he allows some big plays to happen.
Aaron Nagler of Cheesehead TV put it best when he wrote, “It is officially time for Desmond Bishop to cash the check his mouth has been writing for the last two years.”
Looking at A.J. Hawk, he’s been a starter all year, so he should be just fine. Perhaps he’ll even thrive in the leadership role. And to all the fans that were carrying pitchforks and lanterns around because Ted Thompson wouldn’t trade Hawk for Marshawn Lynch or another running back, you can pipe down. Once again, it looks like one of Thompson’s infamous non-moves has proven to be one of his best moves.