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Tuesday, December 25, 2012 8:15:01 PM(UTC)
Not only did Barclay have a solid game, he was fighting the flu at the same time.
Don Barclay lines up on the outside of the formation, and so it was no surprise that he was the last of the Green Bay Packers offensive line to get hit with the flu bug this week.
Talk about bad timing.
Barclay started feeling under the weather Thursday and barely made it through practice, then returned Friday to go through what was more like a walk-through than a practice. Then he showed up at the facility Saturday morning looking so bad that he was immediately sent home.
He had a hard time keeping any food down.
"It was tough," Barclay said after playing the entire game in the Packers' 55-7 victory over the Tennessee Titans at Lambeau Field. "They let me go home early and I just went home and pounded fluids. Laid in bed.
"I was talking with somebody in my family and they told me some trick. Cut an onion, put it by your bed. It's supposed to suck up all the sickness. I tried that. I woke up this morning and felt a little bit better, luckily."
The flu started with left guard T.J. Lang, then spread to backup center Greg Van Roten, then collapsed on Barclay Saturday. Lang missed two days of practice, Van Roten one and Barclay final preparations.
Apparently, the illness knocked them out only for a day or two, but for anyone who has had the flu, think about having to play a football game in 24-degree weather on the first day on which you can get out of bed.
Barclay was added to the injury report Saturday as questionable and when he got to the stadium Sunday morning, he was given an I.V. bag to make sure he didn't get dehydrated. He took part in warm-ups and then proceeded to start only the third game of his career.
"The hardest thing, I had trouble breathing on those long drives," said Barclay, who said he did not get a flu shot this year. "I felt good until the end and then I could feel the fatigue set in. But during the game, I felt good.
"I knew I had to get the job done. I knew I had to battle through it. I did."
As a group, the offensive line had a good day against a Titans team that got behind early and then never really did much of anything on either side of the ball. It's probably not fair to judge any part of the team's performance against the Titans, but there were signs the line is more solidified with Evan Dietrich-Smith at center now and Lang back at left guard.
Rodgers was sacked only once and hit three other times. The offense produced a 100-yard running game for the fifth consecutive week.
"Our line did a good job at the line of scrimmage," coach Mike McCarthy said. "I thought the protection, there was a solid pocket all day. Those are the types of things you look for in your football team."
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