GREEN BAY – One of the more underrated aspects of the NFL is how teams structure their camps and practices. A lot of thought goes into making sure the coaching staff is able to glean as much as it can from the organized activities. If they can’t obtain effective evaluations, well, I think you can guess what usually happens next.

The NFL opened up the weekend for teams to hold their rookie minicamps and the Packers were one of several teams that flew their guys in order to get the ball rolling. It’s an important weekend because OTAs begin on May 23, which is a little over two weeks away. LaFleur and Co. need to see their newest additions in action so they can figure out what to do with them when the 23rd rolls around.

It’s logical to wonder, however, why the Packers didn’t start rookie camp on the May 14, the next open date. It’s a closer date, obviously, which makes it seem like the logistical aspects outside of actual camp are easier to plan. It’s also fair to assume the shorter the distance between rookie camp and OTAs, the better prepared the guys are by May 23, right?

Friday, LaFleur explained why he opened up camp on the first weekend.

“The reason I like to do the first week is you tend to get a few better tryout guys and then also, it kinda gives them a week to go back home and digest some of the things that you’ve taught them,” LaFleur told reporters Friday. “So, hopefully, when they get back here and integrated with our veterans, they aren’t starting from scratch.

“I think it does give them a little bit of a jumpstart in terms of No. 1, how we operate, and the expectations and standards that we have set forth here. But also, just in terms of our football.”

It makes complete sense. The rookies that attend camp over the weekend have plenty of time to get acclimated and ready for OTAs and the offseason, in general. Having more than two weeks of time to prepare is obviously much better than a little over a week. Rooks are acclimating to the routines and rigors of an NFL offseason while also acclimating to their new lives. That extra week is a major, major help.

And the beautiful part about it is it sets the rookies up for success and the Packers should get maximum results – whether they’re positive or negative.

There won’t be any excuses for these guys when May 23 rolls around and that’s exactly what teams want when they are trying to assemble their roster for the upcoming season.

Guys will either sink or swim. But, that’s just another aspect of acclimating to their new lives.

You can watch the LaFleur’s full press conference below: