GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur says All-Pro offensive tackle David Bakhtiari is "a little bit ahead of schedule" in his recovery from a torn anterior cruciate ligament that ended his 2020 season prematurely.
Bakhtiari, 29, injured his left knee at a Dec. 31 practice and didn’t play the remainder of the season. He was working out with other players rehabilitating from injuries during the Packers workout on Wednesday as part of organized team activities.
LaFleur said it was encouraging to see Bakhtiari on the practice field, but noted it was too early to tell whether he will be ready for the start of the season.
"He’s really working hard," LaFleur said. "I think he came back and he’s in excellent shape. We’re just going to take it one day at a time, and I think he’s a little bit ahead of schedule. Then again, there’s a long way until the start of the season, and we’ll see where he’s at when it comes to that time."
Bakhtiari earned All-Pro honors last season despite missing four games because of injuries. He missed three games with broken ribs before suffering the knee injury.
He also was an All-Pro in 2018 and was a second-team selection in 2016, 2017 and 2019.
The 2013 fourth-round draft pick from Colorado signed a four-year contract worth up to $105.5 million with a $30 million signing bonus in November.
Love reps continue in Rodgers' absence
Aaron Rodgers, reportedly disgruntled with the organization, is yet to appear in Green Bay. In the veteran's absence, second-year quarterback Jordan Love has received more action on the practice field.
"I gotta say, I think he's made a jump," offensive lineman Lucas Patrick said of Love. "You know, from last year working just from C-Q-X with him and hearing him this year with his cadences, they're more on cue and his command for the offense, you can tell it has grown."
"He's my good friend, so to see him go on out there and, you know, from the first OTA practice reads, kind of a little nervous, to now scrambling, making good passes and stuff like that, it's really cool to see," added running back AJ Dillon, also entering his second season.
Also on Wednesday, the Packers announced they have signed first-round draft pick Eric Stokes, a cornerback from Georgia who was taken 29th overall. Wide receiver Amari Rodgers, a third-round pick from Clemson, is the only Packers draft choice who remains unsigned.