Bigby back, and beaming : Packers Insider

Bigby back, and beaming

November 10, 2010 by  
Filed under News

Nov 11, 2010 ~ by Martin Hendricks, Journal-Sentinel

~Green Bay — You can’t blame safety Atari Bigby for the ear-to-ear grin that adorned his face in the Green Bay Packers locker room Sunday night.

First and foremost, Green Bay crushed the reeling Dallas Cowboys, 45-7, for its third consecutive victory. Second, the Packers enter their bye week on a roll and were granted a full week off by head coach Mike McCarthy. And finally, Bigby got a chance to play.

"I've never played with a team that's had this many injuries and had this much success. I think the sky's the limit for us this season."

“It’s been a while, but I’ve been ready,” said Bigby, who was just activated to the roster Saturday afternoon from the physically unable to perform list.

“I’ve had a couple of weeks (practice) under my belt. Tonight (Sunday), I had a limited role, and it was an easy win, so that took some pressure off. But it let me know I can still do it.”

Bigby has not played in a regular-season game at Lambeau Field since Dec. 27, 2009.

That one was a rout too, as Green Bay blasted Seattle, 48-10, and Bigby intercepted two Matt Hasselbeck passes. He also defended a career high four passes and added seven total tackles.

A lot has transpired since then.

First there was an off-season contract dispute. Then his chronic ankle injury required surgery in early August, forcing him to miss the entire Packers training camp and first eight games of the NFL season.

Finally, Bigby was on the field for the opening kickoff against Dallas. And the six-year veteran felt the excitement.

“It felt really good just to be out there at Lambeau Field,” Bigby said. “It was a good test right away because special teams is the hardest because it’s such a long play. . . . I think I made a tackle or an assist.”

While not listed for a tackle on that play, Bigby scraped off the rust on special teams and spot duty in the secondary. He rotated in on several series for starter Charlie Peprah and recorded two tackles against Dallas.

“The plan for Atari was to play on special teams and try to roll him in a couple series based on the way the game went,” McCarthy said in his postgame press conference. “It was actually great to get Atari in there.”

Bigby is back, and he hopes to contribute more in the coming weeks.

“I got a lot of reps, and I can’t even express how great it is to come back,” he said. “Physically, I felt good, and mentally I’m getting there. I know my job and know the plays.

“I don’t know what they’re (coaching staff) thinking. I know Charlie has been doing the job, and I’ve always been a fan of his.”

Cornerback Charles Woodson was glad to see Bigby back.

“With the bye week, we hope to get guys in this room healthy and keep it going,” Woodson said.

Bigby is feeling healthy again, and confident, on his surgically repaired ankle.

“I really needed the buildup of scar tissue to be removed, so I could get back my full range of motion in the ankle,” Bigby said. “I’d be lying if I said it felt perfect, but it feels really good.”

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