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    9:15 a.m.                     Head Coach Mike McCarthy available in Media Auditorium

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Benson officially out for season

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 29, 2012 – 3:52 pm

Mike McCarthy announced on Thursday that RB Cedric Benson had surgery on his injured foot Wednesday and would remain on injured reserve for the remainder of the season.

When Benson initially injured the foot in Week 5 in Indianapolis, he was placed on IR with the designation to return. But that return now won’t happen. Benson said as recently as two weeks ago that he was going to be able to avoid surgery, but in the end, it was necessary.

That leaves the Packers with three healthy running backs in James Starks, Alex Green and John Kuhn.

“I feel we have a good rotation,” McCarthy said. “It’s really just finding the things they all do well, and playing to that and having them in sync with the run-blocking unit. I thought the way we started last game, and Arizona was a good game. If we can find that rhythm, it will definitely benefit us.”

Last week against the Giants, the aforementioned trio plus Randall Cobb combined for 40 rushing yards on 10 carries in the first half, a solid 4.0 average. But trailing 31-10 at halftime, the Packers were forced to get away from the run. Against Arizona before the bye, Starks and Green combined for 114 yards on 28 carries (4.1 avg.).

“We just need to pick up our end now,” Kuhn said. “I don’t think there’s just one in particular key. I think everybody just needs to detail their job – the line, the running backs, the wide receivers. The running game isn’t just the running back position. Every position falls into it.”

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Pickett returns to practice Thursday

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 29, 2012 – 12:32 pm

As Mike McCarthy suspected, DL Ryan Pickett was back on the practice field on Thursday after sitting out Wednesday with a quad injury. Both McCarthy and Pickett expressed confidence that Pickett would play on Sunday, and he appears on track to doing so.

Still no LB Clay Matthews, however, whose hamstring injury is going to be re-evaluated on Friday. No C.J. Wilson (knee) on the defensive line, either.

Also, WR Donald Driver (thumb) and TE Andrew Quarless (knee) did not practice on Thursday for a workout that did not include pads. The Packers have been practicing in pads most Thursdays this season, but the new CBA rules allow for only 14 padded practices during the regular season, so a couple of weeks here and there have to be without pads entirely. This would be one of those weeks.

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Posted in Packers.com Blog