Packers now hitting tough road stretch

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 26, 2016 – 11:08 am

161026-road-game-950GREEN BAY — After four straight home games with the bye week mixed in, the Packers begin a stretch of four road games in five weeks with their trip to Atlanta this weekend.

The Packers haven’t played on the road, and dealt with crowd noise and other such challenges, since Week 2 at Minnesota back in mid-September.

“We knew it was an unusual schedule when it came out in the spring,” Head Coach Mike McCarthy said prior to Wednesday’s practice. “The seven-day routine, that’s the reality you need to grab onto whether you’re playing home or away.”

Following a short break after last Thursday’s contest vs. the Bears, the Packers will play their final 10 regular-season games without a break. Nine of the 10 games will be on Sundays, with the one Monday nighter coming at Philadelphia in late November.

“It’s a 10-week plan,” McCarthy said. “At some point in your season, you go to a winter schedule where you cut back on the field time, increase meeting time and shorten the day by a half hour or so. We’re going to start some of that next week. We’re planning for the 10-week stretch. The medical report drives the final schedules.”

Regarding the team’s health, McCarthy said RB Don Jackson, who left the Bears game with a hand injury, will try to do the full gamut in practice to see if he can carry the ball with the injured hand.

“He’ll go through half-line drill and full physical team (11-on-11),” McCarthy said. “He has to go through that to give us direction on how we proceed to Sunday.” will have more following practice and locker room interviews.


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Julio Jones ‘has the whole package’

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 25, 2016 – 12:52 pm

161025-julio-jones-950GREEN BAY — Mike McCarthy had one word for Falcons WR Julio Jones’ statistics this season. “Outrageous.”

Through seven games in 2016, Jones has 40 catches for 830 yards, an average of 20.8 yards per catch and nearly 120 per game. The Packers haven’t faced Jones for two years, but back in 2014 he came into Lambeau Field and set a stadium record with 259 receiving yards in Green Bay’s shootout victory.

“We’re very well aware of what he’s capable of,” McCarthy said on Tuesday.

“He has the whole package. He can beat you deep, he can beat you on the back-shoulder throw, he goes up and high-points the football. He gets out of breaks on crossing routes. Everybody wants to talk about the talent, but he’s an accomplished route-runner.”

As far as guarding Jones on Sunday in Atlanta, the Packers will be without CB Damarious Randall, whom McCarthy confirmed had surgery on his injured groin and will be out this week. McCarthy did not give a timeline for Randall’s return.

CB Quinten Rollins could be out as well. He has missed the last two games with a groin injury and said in the locker room that he was taking it “day by day” this week.

That could leave the Packers down to LaDarius Gunter and Demetri Goodson as their top two outside corners against the Falcons, the same tandem that started against the Bears last Thursday.

“They’re getting better,” McCarthy said. “You look at all the guys that have been given opportunities. That’s kind of the way our season has gone. It’s important for us to continue to grow.”


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Woodson to serve as NFC captain for 2017 Pro Bowl

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on October 25, 2016 – 10:59 am

Former NFL defensive back Charles Woodson addresses members of the Edgewater High School football team before a news conference announcing Orlando, Fla., as the new host for the NFL Pro Bowl football game in Kissimmee, Fla., Wednesday, June 1, 2016. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

GREEN BAY – Former Packers defensive back Charles Woodson has been selected as one of four Legends captains for the 2017 Pro Bowl.

This year, the Pro Bowl will return to the traditional AFC vs. NFC format following three years using a revised, “unconferenced” structure with four retired players assisting each team.

Woodson, who spent seven of his 18 NFL seasons with the Packers, and Tony Gonzalez will captain the NFC team, while Jerome Bettis and Ray Lewis lead the AFC.

During Pro Bowl Week, the four Legends Captains will serve as mentors for the Pro Bowl players, coach practices, and be present on the sidelines on gameday.

A nine-time Pro Bowl selection and Super Bowl champion (XLV), Woodson returns to the Pro Bowl stage as a captain having played in the game in 2016.

Woodson, who now works as an ESPN commentator, ranks sixth on the NFL’s all-time interceptions list (65) and is tied for the most career defensive touchdowns (13). He won the NFL defensive player of the year award with the Packers in 2009.

“Playing in the Pro Bowl last year and now coming back as a captain is really special. I’m excited to return and take part in the week-long celebration of football’s best,” said Woodson in a statement.

“I learned a lot from the veterans I played alongside during my career, and now I have the opportunity during Pro Bowl Week to give back and impact current players and young athletes.”

The game will be played on Sunday, January 29, 2017 and simulcast live on ESPN and ESPN Deportes from Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida.

Fans may vote to select players for the 2017 Pro Bowl online and on web-enabled mobile phones at Pro Bowl rosters will be announced on Tuesday, December 20 live on NFL Network.

Tickets to the 2017 Pro Bowl go on sale to the general public beginning Tuesday, October 25. Fans may visit to purchase tickets.

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Pregame warmup: Rookie RB Don Jackson to start in NFL debut

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 20, 2016 – 6:08 pm

GREEN BAY — Packers rookie RB Don Jackson has been on an active NFL roster for all of a few hours, and he’s going to get his first NFL start tonight at Lambeau Field against the Chicago Bears.

Jackson, an undrafted rookie from Nevada, was signed to Green Bay’s active roster when RB Eddie Lacy was placed on injured reserve earlier Thursday. Head Coach Mike McCarthy said earlier in the week that Jackson was taking reps in practice just in case he’d be needed. Well, he’s needed now.

For a rundown on Jackson’s credentials, click here.

Other options for the Packers in the offensive backfield include new acquisition Knile Davis as well as WRs Ty Montgomery and Randall Cobb. Click here for a feature story on Davis’ arrival via trade this week.

Also for the Packers, WR Davante Adams is active after spending the early portion of the week in the concussion protocol. For the Bears, former Packers G Josh Sitton (ankle) is inactive and will not play in his return to Lambeau Field, but LB Pernell McPhee, who began the season on PUP, has been activated and is expected to play.

On a short week: The Packers are on a short week coming off a loss for just the second time in the Mike McCarthy era. Before the loss to the Cowboys last Sunday, the Packers had been 6-1-1 in games prior to a short week Thursday game. For more on that and the challenges facing Green Bay tonight, check out “One Last Look.”

Not including Thanksgiving games, the Packers are 5-4 all-time in Thursday night games, having won four straight. Their last loss in a non-Thanksgiving Thursday night game was at Dallas in 2007. Last year on Thanksgiving night, the Bears came into Lambeau Field and beat the Packers.

Weather update: It’ll be a cool, crisp evening in Green Bay. Temperature at kickoff is expected to be around 45 degrees, dropping to the low 40s by late in the game. There’s no rain in the forecast and light winds.

Around the NFC North: On Sunday, unbeaten Minnesota (5-0) is coming off its bye with a road game at Philadelphia (3-2). The Eagles have lost two straight after a 3-0 start. Also, Detroit (3-3) has won two straight and hosts its third straight home game against red-hot Washington (4-2), which has won four in a row after an 0-2 start.


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Don Jackson starting at running back; Packers-Bears inactives

Posted by Duke Bobber on October 20, 2016 – 5:55 pm

161019-inactives-950The following players will not play in Thursday night’s game between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears:

Green Bay Packers Green Bay Packers
23 CB Damarious Randall
24 CB Quinten Rollins
32 S Chris Banjo
44 RB James Starks
68 T Kyle Murphy
84 WR Jared Abbrederis
89 TE Jared Cook

Roster update: The Packers placed RB Eddie Lacy on injured reserve on Thursday. RB Don Jackson was signed to the active roster from the practice squad.

Starting lineup changes: #36 LaDarius Gunter and #39 Demetri Goodson will start at cornerback for Randall and Rollins. #82 Richard Rodgers will start at tight end for Cook. #34 Don Jackson will start at running back for Lacy.

Chicago Bears
6 QB Jay Cutler
19 WR Eddie Royal
32 CB Deiondre’ Hall
33 RB Jeremy Langford
36 S DeAndre Houston-Carson
71 LG Josh Sitton
91 NT Eddie Goldman

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Captains selected for Packers vs. Bears

Posted by Duke Bobber on October 20, 2016 – 1:25 pm


As per team tradition, the Packers select game captains each week. Today’s captains will be T David Bakhtiari (offense), LB Julius Peppers (defense) and LS Brett Goode (special teams).

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NFL Network’s ‘A Football Life’ profile of Brett Favre set to air

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 19, 2016 – 4:55 pm

161019-favre-950GREEN BAY — NFL Network’s “A Football Life” series will air a profile of former Packers QB Brett Favre after the Packers-Bears game on Thursday night and again on Friday, Oct. 21, at 8 p.m. CT.

The one-hour show produced by NFL Films features sit-down interviews with Favre, his wife Deanna, former coaches Mike Holmgren and Andy Reid, former Packers GM and fellow Pro Football Hall of Famer Ron Wolf, former QB coach Steve Mariucci, former teammates such as Aaron Rodgers and Greg Jennings, family members and more.

Favre was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this past summer and just returned to Lambeau Field last week to receive his Ring of Excellence and have his name unveiled on the Lambeau Field facade.


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No final decision yet on Eddie Lacy

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 19, 2016 – 10:40 am

161019-lacy-950GREEN BAY — Amidst media reports that Packers RB Eddie Lacy is going to be out multiple weeks with his ankle injury, Head Coach Mike McCarthy said on Wednesday that discussions are ongoing with GM Ted Thompson and team physician Dr. Pat McKenzie to sort through all the information regarding his injury.

“That’s exactly where we are,” McCarthy said, a little more than 30 hours before kickoff against the Bears. “He will work with the rehab group today at practice. He’s made a little bit of progress is the feedback I’ve been given.”

All McCarthy would commit to is that Lacy’s chances of playing on Thursday night are extremely remote.

“He’s going to have to have a wonderful, great 24 hours to play in the game,” he said. “We’ll see what tomorrow brings, but he will be working in the large rehab group today.”

New RB Knile Davis’ first day in Green Bay went well, and McCarthy said he’s a bright player who looked “natural” on the field. McCarthy wouldn’t say whether or not Davis would play in the game, but he’ll try to absorb as much scheme and game plan as he can before game time.

“We’ll do everything we can,” McCarthy said. “When you bring in a player in-season, you don’t get to teach him the system, you don’t get to teach him the foundation. You have to work that in the off hours. You have to exercise a game plan, which is different from an installation, but he’s a veteran, and I think he’ll do fine.”

Rookie Don Jackson is another option at running back should the Packers decide to sign him to the active roster from the practice squad. Ty Montgomery,  Randall Cobb and Aaron Ripkowski have also taken snaps in the backfield this season.

McCarthy also said CBs Damarious Randall and Quinten Rollins, both dealing with groin injuries, would be “hard-pressed” to play on Thursday night. That would leave LaDarius Gunter, Demetri Goodson, Micah Hyde and Josh Hawkins as the defense’s remaining corners.

“I have great confidence in them,” McCarthy said. “They’re going to get in there and play and we’re going to win the game. We have a good football team. Every one of our guys is a good football player. We have a good plan, we’ll exercise that today, and we’ll be ready to go tomorrow night.”


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‘Very sore’ Eddie Lacy will not practice Tuesday

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 18, 2016 – 11:43 am

161018-lacy-950GREEN BAY — Eddie Lacy is “very sore” and will not practice on Tuesday, and James Starks will be out at least a couple of weeks, Head Coach Mike McCarthy said.

McCarthy also confirmed that new RB Knile Davis has arrived. The Packers reportedly acquired the former Kansas City Chief in a trade that has not been officially announced.

“Until we get going, the goal is to get him ready for practice today, and then we’ll take it from there,” McCarthy said. He did not elaborate on how much Davis, a former third-round draft pick and speedy back, might be able to help the Packers on Thursday night. The Packers have seen Davis in live action off and on in recent years in Green Bay’s preseason games against Kansas City.

“It’s part of the NFL landscape, and it’s obviously a big challenge when you’re on a short week,” McCarthy said. “But he’s definitely a talented young player.”

Lacy is dealing with an ankle injury and he played through it in rushing 17 times for 65 yards on Sunday vs. Dallas. Starks had knee surgery on Sunday.

Practice-squad RB Don Jackson will also be getting some practice work at the position. “We have to make sure he’s ready if needed,” McCarthy said.

McCarthy also confirmed that CB Sam Shields (concussion) would not play this week, missing his fifth straight game, and CBs Damarious Randall (groin) and Quinten Rollins (groin) would be in the rehab group and not practicing on Tuesday. will have more following practice and locker room interviews.


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Pregame warmup: Packers still shorthanded in secondary

Posted by Mike Spofford on October 16, 2016 – 2:07 pm


GREEN BAY — The good news is the Packers have CB Damarious Randall back in action today vs. Dallas. The bad news is fellow second-year CB Quinten Rollins is the one not playing now.

Randall missed last week’s game with a groin injury and was questionable on the injury report this week, but he’s active and will start. But with CB Sam Shields (concussion) missing his fourth straight game and now Rollins (groin) out, once again the Packers are a little shorthanded in the defensive backfield.

If Green Bay goes with the same plan it utilized last week, CB Micah Hyde will play the nickel corner position joining starters Randall and LaDarius Gunter, and rookie S Kentrell Brice will come in for the dime defense, with S Morgan Burnett playing the dime corner role. Rookie CB Josh Hawkins is also an option for the dime defense, but S Chris Banjo, out with a hamstring injury, is not.

For the Cowboys, WR Dez Bryant, who was questionable with a knee injury, is out and will not play.

RB options: The Packers have only one true running back active for today’s game in RB Eddie Lacy, with RB James Starks out and rookie RB Don Jackson still on the practice squad.

Lacy was questionable this week after leaving last week’s game with an ankle injury, but he is active and will start. Green Bay’s other options for carrying the ball would be FB Aaron Ripkowski or WRs Randall Cobb and Ty Montgomery, all of whom have carried the ball this season, though not regularly. That trio has combined for nine rushing attempts this season, with Cobb leading the way with five.

Big day in the NFC: With the first-place Minnesota Vikings on their bye, the Packers will end the day either one or two games back in the NFC North race. In the overall NFC picture, four one-loss teams are playing one another in the Cowboys-Packers and Falcons-Seahawks matchups. So, at the end of today, the conference will have just two one-loss teams left, or three if the Eagles can rally to beat the Redskins (Washington was winning in the third quarter at the time of this posting), on the heels of the unbeaten Vikings.

Weather update: It’s a beautiful late afternoon in Green Bay. Temperatures at kickoff are expected to be in the 60s, perhaps dropping into the high 50s later in the game. There’s no chance of rain and winds are light.

TV map: Here’s the FOX TV map for the late-afternoon broadcasts, courtesy of

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