GREEN BAY–Coach Mike McCarthy says the league has made its point about hand placement, and the number of penalties began to decline as the preseason progressed.
“I think the point has been made. Hand placement is something we’ve focused on. The conversation before the game is usually how the game is called,” McCarthy said in his Tuesday press conference. “They’re emphasizing don’t grab the jersey, so don’t grab the jersey. They made their point during the preseason and it’s our job to teach it that way.”
Thursday’s “Kickoff” game in Seattle will give the rest of the league a gauge on the question: Will penalty flags continue to fly, especially against defensive backs, according to the league’s new point of emphasis in enforcing illegal contact and defensive holding.
The Packers will be playing against Richard Sherman, widely considered to be the best cornerback in the game. Will Sherman play on one side only or shadow Jordy Nelson?
“If you watch the games, he’ll be playing to our right,” McCarthy said.
Randall Cobb is the Packers’ other main receiving target.
“Randall has come off his injury excellent. He’s had an excellent offseason and training camp. He looks like Randall. He’s ready to go,” McCarthy said.
Packers.com has provided this full report following locker room interviews.
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GREEN BAY–Mike McCarthy and his coaching staff will be wearing new, state-of-the-art headsets that block out background noise, but rookie center Corey Linsley will be making his first pro start in the NFL’s noisiest stadium without similar protection.
“You can’t protect him; he’s playing center. The best protection he has is Josh Sitton and T.J. Lang and Aaron Rodgers. He’s surrounded by some very good people,” McCarthy said at his Monday press conference, as the Packers continue their preparation for Thursday’s season opener in Seattle. “The challenge of noise is it makes you work harder on your communication. That’s it.”
The Packers spent much of the spring and training camp practicing in noise. Now, the real test is at hand.
“We’re about the Seattle Seahawks right now,” McCarthy said.
Packers.com has provide this full report following locker room interviews.
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GREEN BAY — Matt Flynn is the No. 2 quarterback for the Packers, Mike McCarthy said on Sunday.
The Packers kept three quarterbacks on their 53-man roster for the first time since 2008, with both Flynn and Scott Tolzien behind starter Aaron Rodgers. McCarthy said Flynn is the top backup.
“Matt took the No. 2 reps today,” McCarthy said, referring to Sunday’s practice.
McCarthy also said rookie fifth-round pick Corey Linsley will start at center in Seattle in place of the injured JC Tretter. Toward the end of training camp, Linsley took most of the reps at center with the No. 1 offensive line, but guard Josh Sitton took some snaps as well.
“Corey Linsley is our starting center. I feel good about where he is,” McCarthy said.
The Packers signed 10 players to the practice squad on Sunday. All 10 of those players were with the team in the preseason.
“The evaluation process is over. It’s a long process. We like our team,” McCarthy said. “I’m happy all 63 of the guys are our own.”
Sunday’s practice began the full week of preparation for Thursday’s opener in Seattle, where the Packers last played in 2012, losing on the infamous “Fail Mary” play.
That game will not be part of the coaching staff’s communication or motivation this week.
“I can promise you that the only time that topic will be brought up is when I’m in here,” McCarthy said. “It’s in the past.”
More Packers.com coverage
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You can read the transcript of the fan chat with Vic here:
If you don’t see the chat transcript above, click here.
Tags: #KCvsGB, chat transcript, kansas city chiefs
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HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(opening statement) “That’s exactly how you want to finish your preseason. As I told the football team, after the prayer, I don’t know if I’ve felt this good coming out of the preseason as I do tonight. It’s a group that’s got better each and every week. I really like the mix from an experience standpoint, the veterans and the young players. We’ve hit the targets. The next 48 hours is the worst part of our jobs. I’m very hopeful of the 75 men currently on our roster, all 63 of our opportunities come from that group.”
(on if the decision whether or not to keep three quarterbacks will be a difficult one) “I agree with that. Matt and Scott have both championed the case to be on our football team. I felt very good about their progress from last year through the spring, all the way through training camp. Based on watching it live, I think they both played pretty well tonight. Just the little things, too. There are a number of little things that went on, as far as checks and adjustments and things like that. I thought they both played very well.”
(on if he’ll use all of his time to make cuts) “Absolutely. Absolutely. The most important thing we have in front of us is picking this roster. Our preliminary work on Seattle has been extensive. As far as the game plan, and things like that, we’re in very good shape.”
(on Jayrone Elliot) “Obviously he made a number of big plays. He cramped up there and went back in, and you like to see that. His body of work has been very good.”
(on if this is a Super Bowl team) “I don’t jump out and make statements. Our goal is simply the same every year; we’re here to win championships. That’s what we’re working for. That will never change. That’s a part of being a Green Bay Packer. But with that, we’re not ignorant to the fact that you play 16 games and we have a game coming up here next Thursday.”
(on the upcoming schedule playing a role in deciding to sit so many players) “The game being seven days away was a huge factor in how we decided to approach this game. That goes without being said. As far as our schedule, tomorrow will be similar to a coach’s game plan day. It’d be an in-season Tuesday. Saturday will be kind of like our Monday. We’ll bring the players in late and we’ll just do meetings and everything in house here. We’ll look over the film and Sunday will be an adjusted Wednesday. Monday will be an adjusted Thursday, and then Tuesday’s a Friday. Wednesday, we’ll have our practice and then get on a plane to go to Seattle.”
WIDE RECEIVER DAVANTE ADAMS:
(on McCarthy’s comments after the game) “He feels that we did a great job with everything and that everybody gave a great effort and unfortunately we won’t be able to have everyone around. So everybody keep their heads up and just keep playing.”
(on the first game against Seattle) “I feel ready. We’ve been taking steps all throughout training camp and I feel like putting the pieces together and I feel like I’m ready. I feel like tonight, I felt real comfortable out there so I’m ready for this next game.”
(on touchdown) “It felt good, I mean, my first real touchdown. Got the two-point conversion against St. Louis but first Lamebau Leap and I had so much adrenaline I was just making sure I didn’t jump up into the box seats because I was feeling it. It was a good feeling though.”
QB MATT FLYNN:
(on the team’s overall good performance tonight) “I was real proud of some of those young guys that got in there, especially that reserve offensive line. [They had] a lot of guys fighting and they executed really well. It was fun to watch, fun to be a part of and that’s kind of the way that you want to go out in the fourth preseason game.”
(on if leading three scoring drives made a statement) “I don’t know. The only thing I’m thinking about is the ones I missed. I know that we had some production, but there’s a couple plays that I’m pretty frustrated about.”
(on what particular play he was upset about) “The fourth-down corner route to ‘Stony’ (TE Jake Stoneburner). I don’t know why, I don’t think I’ve ever done it in my life, but I flinched at a guy coming at me about to hit me and made a bad throw. It’s embarrassing so, yeah, I’d like to have that one back.”
(on what these next days are like for him) “Hopefully they’re really good. I don’t know, I just go home and hang out with my wife and my dogs and go about normal, everyday life and hope you don’t get a call.”
(on facing a playoff-caliber team) “It’s definitely good competition. They obviously have a great team. They have a great coach. But if you look at what they did on defense, they weren’t trying to out-coach us or out-scheme us. We lined up and they played a lot of man-to-man coverage and it was basically just let your guys go – the guys fighting for spots – let them go and have a lot of one-on-one battles. We won a lot of those today and we’d like to think that we could have won some more.”
(on the competition between him and Scott Tolzien) “I’ve said it from day one and it’s true, I’m not just saying it to say it, but I really haven’t paid attention to any competition. I’ve been out there supporting Scott, have never once compared apples to apples or tried to, and I don’t think anybody really does in a competition. But I think both him and I have played well and I think both him and I have made an argument to be on this football team.”
WIDE RECEIVER JEFF JANIS:
(on knowing ball was coming to him on fourth-down play) “I wasn’t sure but I knew I had a good chance at it so I was looking up and hoping.”
(on fourth-down play) “I just saw the ball in the air and had a chance to make a play and good thing I looked it in and scored the touchdown.”
(on first Lamebau Leap) “It was awesome. The fans are pretty crazy.”
(on final audition) “I think I showed what I can do and I knew coming into this game I had to showcase a little bit more and I think I did pretty well.”
(on proving he deserves spot on roster) “I think so but then again I know I’ve got a lot more work to do and a lot more things I need to work on, so I’m just going to hope for the best.”
(on 62-yard kickoff return) “I just got thrown back there. I was the second kickoff returner and I was just looking to make a play and I saw an opening so I took it and ran with it.”
(on Flynn and Tolzien) “They’re both good guys and they both throw a good ball and they’re both really good quarterbacks, so that’s going to be a tough decision.”
(on pressure regarding roster spots) “There was quite a bit, and like I said, I knew that I had to perform and show once again what I could do so I feel really good about the game and I’m just going to hope for the best.”
(on approaching tonight’s game) “I just approached it just like any other game and tried to just think of it as just another preseason game where I could go out and show what I could do, so that’s how I took it.”
CENTER COREY LINSLEY:
(on what the game film will show) “A lot of guys going hard, playing fast. A few minor mental errors out there that we kind of game-planned for. I had a mental error. I think someone else did, but regardless I think we played hard and fast and did well.”
(on his mental error) “I was the outside zone and went the wrong way.”
(on feeling in control) “Yeah, I did. I actually felt this was,) mentally and in terms of the intangible aspect of the game, I felt the most comfortable out there now. They’ve been telling me to get to the line and make the calls quicker and I felt that I did that better today than I ever have before, so I felt like I got better there.”
(on mindset) “Every game is an opportunity. There’s never a game for me where it’s just another game. I’m not there yet. Every day is another opportunity to get better and today was one of those.”
(on progress tonight against quality opponent) “Coach McCarthy just said that he doesn’t know that he’s ever felt this good after training camp or felt like a team has made this much progress after training camp, so I feel that when a head coach like Coach McCarthy says something like that you know it’s for real. Obviously everybody did a pretty good job tonight and played hard. There’s something to be said for that.”
(on how starting tonight might help against Seattle) “Seattle’s obviously a different environment. It’s going to be a bigger stage and everything but the area I feel I made the most improvement on was making my calls early and often, loud so everyone could hear them, so I felt I got better at that tonight.”
QB SCOTT TOLZIEN:
(on how he felt about the game tonight) “I thought guys just played well all together on our offense. Everywhere across the line – offensive line, receivers, running back – everyone that played showed up and played well.”
(on if he feels like he played to the best of his ability) “I think you’re always hard on yourself, [but] I’m definitely pleased. I think our whole offense is pleased with how the game went, but I’m sure when we watch the tape tomorrow you’ll see stuff that you can improve on, like every game. I thought just as a whole offensive unit, guys really came and played hard and played well.”
(on the relationship between him and Flynn despite competing for the same spot) “I like our [quarterback] room, and first and foremost, they’re great guys. It’s truly the most fun I’ve ever had playing football, having those guys in the room. They keep the mood light and it’s been fun in that regard. You spend so much time preparing for these games that you’re always happy for the other guy’s success just because you see how much time we put in it together, so it’s nice when it shows up on game day too.”
(on if he’s ever alternated playing like tonight) “Actually, last preseason we did it by series, actually against the Chiefs, when I was with San Fran[cisco]. That’s a little bit harder just because you’re kind of in and out, juggling. It’s tough to get in a rhythm, but I thought for the most part it went well tonight.”
(on how he would assess his entire summer) “Every day you’re just trying to get better at something and I’m really lucky, honestly. It’s a really good coaching staff here and then obviously playing with Matt [Flynn] and Aaron [Rodgers], that’s a lot of experience in this offense, so you learn a lot every single day. It’s been a great experience for me and I really have enjoyed my time here.”
(on what the next two days are like) “They’re tough no matter what because it’s kind of out of your hands. So you just control what you can control and it’s just tough because this room will never be the same as far as everyone on the roster [that] has to be cut. You build some great relationships and you’re here all hours of the day, so you meet a lot of guys and it’s never easy. I think these are the worst two days of the year coming up.”
Tags: #KCvsGB, kansas city chiefs, postgame quotes
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GREEN BAY–Matt Flynn and Scott Tolzien each completed two touchdown passes and the Packers capped their preseason with a 34-14 win over the Chiefs at Lambeau Field.
The two quarterbacks each played well enough to give Coach Mike McCarthy a difficult decision in naming a backup to starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Will the Packers keep three quarterbacks? That question is also on the lips of Packers fans heading into this weekend’s mandatory roster reduction to 53.
Flynn completed seven of 15 passes for 102 yards and touchdowns of 22 yards to Davante Adams and 11 yards to LaDarius Perkins. Flynn played in the first and third quarters.
Tolzien completed 12 of 18 passes for 139 yards and touchdowns of 33 yards to Jeff Janis and 6 yards to Myles White. Tolzien entered the game in the second quarter and closed it in the fourth.
Undrafted rookie Jayrone Elliott was one of the stars of the game, registering his fifth sack of the preseason and continuing his strong bid for a roster spot.
Eighteen Packers starters didn’t dress for the game, resting for next Thursday’s season opener in Seattle.
The Packers were 3-1 in the preseason.
Tags: #KCvsGB, kansas city chiefs
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GREEN BAY–Matt Flynn threw his second touchdown pass of the night and the Packers led the Chiefs, 27-14, after three quarters of play at Lambeau Field on Thursday night.
Flynn was the Packers’ quarterback at the start of the second half. He shot a 19-yard completion to tight end Ryan Taylor and the Packers had a first down at their 48. The drive was halted, however, when Flynn threw incomplete for tight end Jake Stoneburner on fourth-and-4.
Rookie phenom Jayrone Elliott was injured on the Chiefs’ next possession, but he was able to walk off the field under his own power and later returned to the game. The Packers forced a punt and took possession at their 6-yard line.
Flynn began the drive with a sideline dart to Kevin Dorsey. A bomb for rookie wide receiver Jeff Janis resulted in a pass-interference penalty against the Chiefs, and the Packers had a first down at the Chiefs 44.
Rookie running back LaDarius Perkins broke loose for an 18-yard run around left end and a late hit moved the ball to the Chiefs 11. Flynn’s screen pass to Perkins on the next play covered the remaining distance to the end zone. It was Flynn’s second touchdown pass of the night and the Packers led, 27-7, with 6:23 to play in the third quarter.
Cornerback Jumal Rolle intercepted an Aaron Murray pass, but a roughing-the-passer penalty against Andy Mulumba nullified the interception and gave the Chiefs a first down at the Packers 48. Flags were flying fast and furiously, as they have all through the preseason. Nearly every play ended with a yellow flag on the ground.
The Packers were flagged for illegal hands to the face on fourth-and-5, and the Chiefs had a first down at the Packers 12. Joe McKnight scored on a 1-yard run with :03 to play in the quarter.
Jeff Janis returned the ensuing kickoff 62 yards.
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Pau from Barcelona, Spain
Vic, I follow and enjoy your columns, even in training camp. TC is over; so is the preseason. Tell us who would be your TC MVP.
If JC Tretter hadn’t been injured, it might’ve been him. I was leaning toward Richard Rodgers until Jayrone Elliott’s sack in the first quarter. Nobody has come as far and as fast this summer as Elliott has. He has etched himself into the training camp history book with a storybook pursuit of a job in the NFL.
Ryan from Toledo, OH
Vic, I think Richard Rodgers could be a very effective starter for us at tight end. What do you think is the order of our depth chart at tight end?
Rodgers, Andrew Quarless and Brandon Bostick, when he’s healthy, but don’t etch that in stone. If Rodgers is this team’s starting tight end, a lot can change. Quarless played through the second quarter. What does that mean?
Joe from Dubuque, IA
Elliott is a beast. He has to make the 53, right?
Everybody’s looking for pass rushers. Dee Ford was a first-round pick for the Chiefs and Elliott is outplaying him tonight. I think Elliott makes the 53.
Todd from Boondocks, IA
When you covered the Jaguars during their down years, how did you approach “Ask Vic” compared to how you do it now with the Packers?
No difference; I told the truth. When the Jaguars had to gut the roster due to a salary cap problem in 2002, I told the readers the Jaguars were in rebuilding and it was going to take more than one year to fix the cap and the roster. The Packers are not in rebuilding.
Jeff from Grass Valley, CA
We’ve had lighten up week. What would you call this week for Packers fans?
The next six days are “Here We Go!” time.
Alex from Los Angeles, CA
Linsley looks solid and Elliot is the truth.
I watched Corey Linsley in the first quarter. I thought he was especially effective in run blocking. Let’s please remember that he and the Packers will be playing against a very different opponent next Thursday. They’ll be playing against the Super Bowl champions.
Matt from New York, NY
We want Seattle! We want Seattle!
That’s good, cause you’re gonna get them.
Ed from Fort Bragg, CA
Vic, I am thoroughly disgusted with the NFL’s values that were demonstrated by suspending a player for a year for smoking pot and only suspending a player for two games for violence against a woman. I think that sets a very bad example for the youth. What’s your take on this?
I think the NFL regrets that decision and it took steps to correct the problem today, but let’s please let that go for now. I’m watching a football game. It’s not an especially memorable football game, but watching a football game is why I’m here and it sure beats debating punishment for nefarious behavior. Jimmy Cannon said he liked being a sportswriter because he liked being in happy places. I’m in the press box tonight. I’m in a happy place.
Bob from Oosterhout, The Netherlands
Good luck, Ted Thompson. This roster is loaded with talent.
Yes, it is, but by the time he gets done using all of the means available to him to keep the players he wants, you’ll wonder if anybody was released at all.
Jerry from Wilmington, NC
Finally, the interception you’ve been looking for.
First in the preseason by a defensive back; Jarrett Bush was playing cornerback, though. I want one of the Packers’ safeties to get one.
Tags: #KCvsGB, kansas city chiefs
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GREEN BAY — The Packers scored every time they touched the ball until the final two minutes of the first half, taking a 20-7 lead at halftime against the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night at Lambeau Field.
The Packers added to their lead early in the quarter with a 29-yard FG by K Mason Crosby, capping a 10-play drive. Four runs by RB DuJuan Harris picked up 26 yards, and QB Matt Flynn hit WR Davante Adams for 17 yards to make it first-and-goal on the 5.
But Harris was then swallowed up for a 6-yard loss and two incomplete passes later, the Packers had to settle for Crosby’s kick with 13:26 left in the half.
Scott Tolzien took over for Flynn at QB on the Packers’ next possession and directed a 59-yard touchdown drive. He began it by hitting WR Myles White for 11 yards, and finished it with a 33-yard TD pass to rookie WR Jeff Janis on fourth-and-3.
As with Flynn’s field goal drive, a third-down defensive penalty on the Chiefs kept the drive alive, as Kansas City struggled with flags the entire first half.
On the second play of the Chiefs’ ensuing drive, Packers CB Jarrett Bush jumped a slant route and intercepted QB Tyler Bray’s pass at the Kansas City 41.
The offense quickly turned that into another three points, as RB LaDarius Perkins carried three times for 17 yards, but Tolzien barely overthrew WR Kevin Dorsey deep, leading to a 42-yard FG by Crosby. That made it 20-0 with 5:11 left in the half.
The Chiefs finally made some noise with a 49-yard kickoff return by Frankie Hammond Jr., and a diving catch for a 45-yard gain by WR A.J. Jenkins, making it first-and-goal. Bray’s 2-yard TD pass to TE Richard Gordon pulled the Chiefs within 20-7 with 3:21 left in the half.
After the Packers’ first scoreless possession of the game, the Chiefs drove to the Green Bay 40-yard line, but Bray’s pass on fourth-and-6 went off the hands of TE Demetrius Harris.
Tags: #KCvsGB, kansas city chiefs
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GREEN BAY–Matt Flynn took the first-quarter lead in the battle for the backup quarterback job by marching the No. 2 Packers offense 86 yards in 12 plays, capping the drive with a 22-yard touchdown pass to rookie wide receiver Davante Adams. The Packers led the Chiefs, 7-0, after one quarter of play at Lambeau Field in what is each team’s final game of the preseason.
The Chiefs gained two first downs in their opening possession of the game, but quarterback Chase Daniel missed a wide open receiver on third-and-3 and the Chiefs were forced to punt. Jeff Janis fielded the punt and the Packers took possession at their 14-yard line.
Flynn converted a third-and-6 with a 17-yard pass to Richard Rodgers. James Starks then ripped off 9 yards over right tackle and a 9-yard toss to Jarrett Boykin put the ball at the Chiefs 45. Flynn scrambled for a first down at the Chiefs 30 and then found Adams on a crossing route with 5:38 to play in the first quarter.
Eighteen Packers starters did not dress for the game. The Packers open the regular season in Seattle next Thursday. Undrafted rookie free agent Jayrone Elliott registered a sack of Daniel, which would give Elliott the league lead in preseason sacks.
Tags: #KCvsGB, kansas city chiefs
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