Packers assistants: ‘It’s time for us to get it done’

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 25, 2016 – 5:14 pm

161125-rollins-950GREEN BAY — The Packers’ coordinators and defensive coaches addressed the media Friday afternoon. Here’s a synopsis of some of their key comments.

Defensive coordinator Dom Capers

On how LB Jake Ryan was playing before ankle injury:

I really liked our combination in there with Blake and Jake. What we’re asking them to do, they were doing a good job. You’ve got a first year guy and a rookie. I think Jake is your typical from Year 1 to Year 2, he’s made some pretty good strides and we’re excited to see him back out there.

On CB Damarious Randall’s playmaking ability:

One thing has been missing this season has been the turnovers. A big part of that is the more guys you put on the field who have those kind of abilities, the better your chances are because you never know when it’s going to happen. We’ve seen him through the preseason and regular season to be able to go take the ball away.

Offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett

On Philadelphia’s defense:

They’re playing really well at home. You look at what they’re doing on tape. They fly around and make plays. What stands out is their discipline. We have to continue to be disciplined and execute in certain situations to make sure we take full advantage of every opportunity we have.

On having two traditional RBs:

It certainly helps. Obviously you want some balance. At the same time, you want to do what’s necessary to win the football game. It opens up the opportunity for play-action pass. The key is to just execute and take full advantage of the situation.

Special-teams coordinator Ron Zook

On whether the Eagles use returners Wendell Smallwood and Kenjon Barner at the same time on kickoffs:

They have. They did last week. I think that’s what they’ll probably do so you can’t kick away from them. They’re both very good. They do a good job. … (Smallwood) can run, he’s fast, he’s strong. They feel that and those guys do a good job of blocking as well. They’re very well-coached.

On Jake Schum’s production recently:

Placement. We’re not where we were in punt coverage last year at this point in time. You get a return here or there, a missed tackle, there’s so many little things that can go wrong, but the big thing is ball placement. I think Jake is getting into a little bit of rhythm. He has to place the ball where we need to place it and we have to go down and cover.

Associate head coach/linebackers Winston Moss

On Clay Matthews getting acclimated after injury:

The mind and the will might have been willing and wanted to in so many ways, but this is pro football against a very good team. To get back into the flow, it might not always be as easy as you think. We’re looking forward to him to him getting back to his old play-making self.

On not having Matthews for three games:

When you have a player of Clay’s ability and he’s not in there, the defense doesn’t benefit. When he’s in there, he’s shown he can be a game-changer. When you don’t’ have that type of player in there, you do the best you can with the next set of available players. Datone Jones is so close to breaking through and making plays. He’s very complimentary in the pass rush. The last time we won a game, he hits the quarterback, ball flies out and Nick Perry gets the interception. You look at Perry, he’s been very solid. We’re trying to find the blend with Julius to make sure he plays enough. All he does is make big plays at crucial times.

Cornerbacks coach Joe Whitt

On Damarious Randall working his way back:

That’s what we get paid for. Nobody really cares about the rust or what have you. The only thing that matters is how you perform on game day. Hopefully when he does come back, he gives us the plays we need for a winning performance.

On mounting injuries at cornerback:

It’s not necessarily hard on me. I’m not doing a very good job of getting guys to produce on game day. That’s what it all comes down to. What they do in practice – they’ve had some really nice practices, but at the end of the day, we get paid to win football games and it’s my job to make sure no matter who goes out there, they’re executing and playing at a level that we can win games, and making splash plays. That’s what we’re typically known for. I tell my guys as long as the quarterback plays well and the cornerback plays well, we’re winning here at the Green Bay Packers and I firmly believe that. We have to play better. I don’t care who goes out there and I have to coach better. I’m not going to any excuses. It’s time to make plays. It’s time to get it done and we can do it. If we want to have the success that we’re going to have, then we better do it. It’s as simple as that.

On Sam Shields’ season being over:

He and William Gay are two of the guys I’m closest to that I’ve coached. I just want to make sure that when we comes back (to Green Bay), he’s Sam Shields, the person, that’s all I care about. That’s what he’s taking care of. He’s with his family. He’s with his little girls. I know their bringing him plenty of joy at this moment. That’s the best place for him. The football part of it is going to take care of itself. He’s meant a lot to me over the past couple years and I’m just looking forward to having him back around and being around because he’s a fun guy, he’s a good guy to be with and he bring so much to this team.

Defensive line coach Mike Trgovac

On using Mike Daniels in third-down situations:

We have a little rotation going there. We kind of judge it a little bit on the down-and-distance, too. He was in there during the Indianapolis game where we got the pick off the good rush. We’re trying to mix it up a little bit and keep those guys fresh. If he’s in a game situation where it’s a middle-of-the-road down, we’ll try to keep him in.

On Kenny Clark’s development:

I think Kenny is coming along well. He had some really good plays in the game, fighting through pass rush. That’s a little bit of that job, particularly when you’re only rushing four. I thought he did a really nice job. They try to run a duo-play on him and he did a nice job of holding his ground there. I think he’s going to be a fine player.

Assistant linebackers coach Scott McCurley

On how Jake Ryan looked at Thursday’s practice:

It’s exciting to get him back out there. At the same of practice, I was a little concerned with being outside on the slick conditions. Moving around today was a blessing. I think he’s feeling better and better. We know he does a great job and can help us out.

On difference Ryan makes inside:

Jake’s a big part of it. He’s made a big stride from Year 1 to Year 2. It’s unfortunate he’s not out there. As an inside linebacker group, we have to step up and pick up the slack. It can’t be two good plays and then one breaks out on you. You have do your job and pick up the slack for the guys who aren’t out there. There’s no excuse. We have to go out there and get the job done.

Safeties coach Darren Perry

On all the moving parts on defense:

I don’t think trying to do too much. We have some moving parts, but the guys who are out there know what they’re doing. We just have to do it better. We’ve had some guys in positions and we just haven’t made the plays whether it’s third down or first-and-10.

On limiting tight-end production:

When you think back – I hate to go back to Tennessee, but that was the one game where we probably weren’t at our best. It was pad level. We corrected that. Our guys have the ability. We have to make sure our technique is on point. Ability-wise, it’s there. We just have to make sure we’re dialed in and focused.

Posted in Blog

Packers LB Jake Ryan returning to practice on Friday

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 25, 2016 – 10:54 am

161125-ryan-950GREEN BAY — Packers LB Jake Ryan is set to return to practice for the Packers’ defense on Friday, Head Coach Mike McCarthy announced.

It will be important for Ryan to return, given that rookie LB Blake Martinez is now out with a knee injury. Ryan, Martinez and Joe Thomas have taken the bulk of the snaps at inside linebacker for the Packers this season, and Ryan’s recent absence necessitated the promotion of Carl Bradford to the active roster to have any depth at the position.

“Everything looks good with Jake so far,” McCarthy said of Ryan, who is recovering from an ankle injury. “We need him. Definitely, Jake Ryan is important to how we move forward. He’s made a ton of progress. I’m excited to see him out at practice today. It’s great to have him back.”

Ryan has missed essentially the last two games. He was injured on an early punt at Tennessee two weeks ago and was out of the game before Green Bay’s defense ever took the field. He then missed last week’s game at Washington.

It’s probably not a coincidence that the Packers’ run defense has allowed its two biggest runs against it with Ryan out of the lineup, a 75-yarder at Tennesssee and a 66-yarder at Washington. Prior to Ryan’s departure, the longest run against the Packers this season was just 29 yards by the Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott.

“He’s really comfortable with what’s being asked of him,” McCarthy said of Ryan in his second season. “The adjustment part of it is cleaner for him. He’s playing a lot faster. He’s a heck of a football player. He’s instinctive, he’s tough.”

As for QB Aaron Rodgers’ comment on Wednesday that he thinks the Packers “can run the table,” McCarthy had no qualms about it.

“I love it. It’s an expression of confidence,” McCarthy said. “That’s a statement he made. I read about it just like everybody else. It just shows what’s going on internally. The fact of the matter is you have to win the next game. We all get that part. This is a big challenge going to Philadelphia.” will have more following practice and locker room interviews.


Posted in Blog

Where to watch Monday night’s Packers-Eagles game

Posted by Duke Bobber on November 25, 2016 – 9:00 am

161123-starks-950– If you’re looking for a Packers bar airing the game, try the search feature on Packers Everywhere.

– ESPN is in its 11th season as host of the most successful series in sports television history, Monday Night Football. Play-by-play man Sean McDonough is joined by analyst Jon Gruden for the 47th season of MNF broadcasts, with Lisa Salters reporting from the sidelines.

– Milwaukee’s WTMJ (620 AM), airing Green Bay games since November 1929, heads up the Packers Radio Network that is made up of 50 stations in five states. Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) and two-time Packers Pro Bowler Larry McCarren (analyst) call the action.

– Westwood One Sports will air the game on radio across the country. Kevin Harlan (play-by-play) and Boomer Esiason (analyst) will call the action, with Steve Tasker reporting from the sidelines and Jim Gray hosting the pregame and halftime shows.

– The broadcast is also available on Sirius Satellite Radio (WTMJ feed).

NFL Game Pass gives fans access to full replays of every NFL game on demand, in high definition.


Monday 8:30pm (TSN)

Lunes 730pm (ESPN)

Tuesday 130am (Sky Sports)

Tags: , , , , ,
Posted in Blog

Eddie Lacy and Sam Shields out for season

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 23, 2016 – 1:40 pm

161123-lacy-950GREEN BAY — Head Coach Mike McCarthy said the Packers will activate CB Makinton Dorleant from injured reserve on Wednesday, a move that officially ends the season for RB Eddie Lacy and CB Sam Shields.

Lacy had 71 carries for 360 yards in five games (5.1 yards per carry), including a 17-carry, 103-yard performance against Detroit in Week 3. He’s participated in team meetings since being placed on injured reserve on Oct. 20.

With Lacy out for the year, the Packers likely will stick with receiver Ty Montgomery in the backfield, along with veteran James Starks and recently acquired veteran Christine Michael.

“I thought he was having his best year,” said McCarthy of Lacy. “Eddie brings a different style and different packages you do with Eddie and James. It’s important to fit what we do and how we do it with our players.

Shields, a Pro Bowler in 2014, hasn’t played since he sustained a concussion in the fourth quarter against Jacksonville during Green Bay’s the regular-season opener on Sept. 11.

McCarthy has stayed in contact with Shields, who’s been home in Sarasota, Fla., but said he doesn’t know the cornerback’s long-term outlook in regards to football.

“Really the conversation with Sam, I know particularly mine, he needs to get healthy for him and his family,” McCarthy said. “That needs to be his focus, it is his focus and that’s what we’re focusing on.”

Dorleant, an undrafted rookie out of Northern Iowa, had two tackles in two preseason games before being placed on injured reserve during the final roster reduction with a hamstring injury.

The 5-foot-11, 182-pound cornerback stayed in Green Bay during his rehab and could provide depth to a cornerback position that lost Demetri Goodson to what McCarthy called “a significant knee injury” against Washington on Sunday night.

“He’s explosive,” said McCarthy of Dorleant. “He plays with great energy. I liked his toughness. I thought he did some really good things on special teams. He was injured pretty much the whole training camp and fought through it, and did some good things. It’ll be good to get him out there and see where he is.”

The previous players who received the Packers’ designation to return from injured reserve are TE Andrew Quarless (2015), C JC Tretter (2014), WR Randall Cobb (2013) and RB Cedric Benson (2012).

McCarthy added that cornerback Damarious Randall (groin) will practice in limited fashion on Wednesday. He hasn’t played since Oct. 16 against Dallas.

Right guard T.J. Lang (foot) is getting better, but McCarthy said he won’t practice Wednesday and will be a long-shot to play on Monday night against Philadelphia.

Posted in Blog

T.J. Lang and Jake Ryan won’t play against Washington

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 18, 2016 – 10:06 am

161118-lang-950GREEN BAY — The Packers will be without right guard T.J. Lang and inside linebacker Jake Ryan for Sunday night’s game in Washington, according to Head Coach Mike McCarthy.

Both Lang (foot) and Ryan (ankle) exited in the first quarter of Sunday’s game in Tennessee and didn’t return. Both players sat out of Wednesday and Thursday’s practices.

Don Barclay, a fifth-year veteran, finished the game at right guard for Lang and likely will get the start Sunday against Washington. It’ll only be the third game Lang has missed since he became a starter in 2011.

“I think it helps anytime a player can focus on one or two position as opposed to all five,” said McCarthy of Barclay’s versatility. “Really, I think you’ve seen him excel at the center position, which is a real credit to him anytime you convert a tackle to a center obviously that’s a huge change.

“He’s just a heck of a football player.”

McCarthy didn’t make any projections on the availability of starting left tackle David Bakhtiari, who left in the third quarter with a knee injury and didn’t return.

Bakhtiari was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday. Rookie second-round pick Jason Spriggs replaced Bakhtiari in Tennessee and could get his first NFL start if Bakthiari doesn’t play.

Second-year linebacker Joe Thomas, who’s served as the Packers’ dime linebacker all season, stepped in for Ryan at inside linebacker next to rookie Blake Martinez in the base and nickle defenses against the Titans.

Thomas and Martinez are the only other natural inside linebackers on the active roster, though outside linebacker Clay Matthews and safety Morgan Burnett know the position, as well.

McCarthy’s biggest concern with Ryan’s absence is the domino effect it could have on the special-team units.

“It’s more about the special teams and how we’re going to play on defense,” McCarthy said. “We have two more days of preparation.”

The rest of the Packers’ injury report and designations for Sunday’s game will be released on Friday afternoon.

McCarthy said newly acquired running back Christine Michael was limited in practice Thursday after arriving in Green Bay only hours before, but he likes what he saw from him.

“You look at a young man’s talents, his running style. He’s obviously productive,” McCarthy said. “He comes from a running football environment. It’s obviously an area we want to get better and have more opportunities.”

Posted in Blog

Packers assistants: ‘Good to see Jared Cook back on the field’

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 17, 2016 – 5:54 pm

161117-cook-950GREEN BAY — The Packers’ coordinators and offensive coaches addressed the media late Thursday afternoon. Here’s a synopsis of some of their key comments.

Running backs coach Ben Sirmans

On Christine Michael:

Being out there on the football field today, one of the things about this league is how much terminology is similar like protection. I said, ‘This is what this is,’ and he’s like, ‘Yeah, that’s what we called it in Seattle.’ It makes the transition much easier.

On his skill set:

I’ll tell you what. I was really impressed. He’s really quick. He has good, sudden movement. It seems like he has good vision. He runs with a natural body. It gives him a better chance to get in and out of seams. He has a pretty good skill set. I think he was leading Seattle in rushing.

Tight ends coach Ben Angelichio

On Jared Cook’s progress:

It’s been good. Obviously he’s been practicing more, participating more in some of the team stuff. We’ll make that decision when we get to Saturday and see where we’re at. It’s good to see him out there getting reps.

On how Cook was playing when he got injured:

Yeah, I thought he got off to a good start in the Detroit game. I think in the second half against in Minnesota when he started to progress. The game was moving in a positive direction against Detroit. It was unfortunate he ended up getting hurt there in the second quarter.

Receivers coach Luke Getsy

On Randall Cobb playing through hamstring injury:

He’s starting to get on the other side of that thing. He’s as tough as they come. There’s nobody tougher in the business than that guy. Nobody in the building will see him holding his hamstring or limping around.

On Washington CB Josh Norman:

I think as much as anything, you know someone is going to face him. We keep it general in our room about how you want to attack somebody. Whether he’s going to follow somebody, there’s no way to prepare for that. If he does follow somebody, you’re preparing for man (coverage). We’ll find out pretty quickly on Sunday.

Quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt

On Davante Adams’ improvement:

I think Davante is really coming on. He looks confident in his play. The more confidence he has, the better he’s going to play. I think he’s feeling really good about where his game is right now. He’s a guy, Chicago in particular, I don’t think they had an answer for him no matter who they put on him. Since then, he’s playing with a lot of confidence.

On the prevalence of back-shoulder passes in Tennessee:

A lot of that goes into the details of the game plan and how they play downfield throws. They played the high shoulder and invited you to throw the back shoulder. We had some success with it last week.

Offensive line coach James Campen

On how Jason Spriggs and Don Barclay did against Titans:

I thought they did OK. Losing T.J. Lang, I thought Donny did well. They have good rushers there. It was a good learning experience for Jason. There’s one play there he’d love to have back. The first time playing and a good opponent, it’s a good way to get your feet wet.

On if offensive line is better equipped this year to handle injuries:

I would think so because of the positions they play. We have two big guys, tackles, you can always move them inside if you have to. I think that’s a tribute to the scouts who are picking them. I would have to say yes and then you have a guy like Donny who can play all three. You watch tape and of course you’re going to watch last year’s game and see JC playing (at left tackle). He played a good game out there against them.

Associate head/coach offense Tom Clements

On third-down production:

In order to play well regardless of (situation), you have to execute. It’s all in paying attention to details. When you have a chance to make a play, you have to make a play whether it’s a runner, passer, receiver or blocker. We got into some long-yardage situations that are difficult to convert. It’s not one factor. We have to play as well as we can and execute.

On Jared Cook in the offense:

He was starting to play well. He was feeling more comfortable in the offense. Aaron was feeling more comfortable with him. It’s unfortunate he got hurt. He’s done some good things in practice. We’ll see what happens.

Offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett

On what Christine Michael can do for offense:

It’s early right now. He came in today, literally, so obviously it’ll take a little time before we can get going. Coach McCarthy will put a plan in place for him and he’ll get up to speed.

On what it would mean to get Jared Cook back:

He’s another playmaker. It’s always good to get those guys back out on the field. He goes about it the right way in the classroom and practice environments. It’s just continuing to work through it. It’s early. From the overall preparation standpoint, just continue doing what he’s doing right now.

Defensive coordinator Dom Capers

On Julius Peppers:

We’ve had a plan with Julius all along that hasn’t’ changed a whole lot. We have a number of people at that position that we feel good about. We’re just trying to stay the course with the plan we’ve had with Julius. There probably isn’t a player on defense that wouldn’t want to play every snap. … Rushing the passer every down is exhausting, the advantage is you have a fresh guy rushing against a guy who’s been blocking two or three guys. It’s just something we have to keep our finger on the pulse.

On difference with Clay Matthews in defense.

It’s like most defenses in the league. I always felt if you want to be an outstanding defense, you want to have two or three difference-makers and then a lot of good guys who fill their roles. I’ve always felt Clay is a difference-maker. I look at our game last week, which is one of the toughest starts we’ve had since I’ve been here. The 75-yard run had a big impact on the game. You have play every play like that play is going to determine the game.

On whether Clay Matthews is an emergency option at inside linebacker:

He always is. We haven’t talked to Clay about playing inside, but if Clay was up last week and we ended up on the first play losing Jake, then Clay would’ve been the best alternative if he had to go in there. He doesn’t need a lot of reps.

Special-teams coordinator Ron Zook

On P Jake Schum:

He had a couple punts that were inside the pooch area where you’re not going to get the big net (average). You just have to be steady. We strive for net punt and field position. You get into the latter months of the season when the weather becomes a factor here. Last year one of the things that helped us with our net punt was getting our gunners down there to cover and keeping the returns to a minimum.

Other stories:

Hodkiewicz: Michael happy to call Green Bay ‘home’

Spofford: Matthews ready to return, for real this time

Spofford: On a day off: Hunting with Janis

Spofford: McCarthy on Michael: ‘I love his running style’

Posted in Blog

McCarthy on Michael: ‘I love his running style’

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 17, 2016 – 11:00 am

161117-mccarthy-michael-950GREEN BAY — At the time of his pre-practice press conference on Thursday, Mike McCarthy hadn’t yet met new RB Christine Michael, as he was en route to Green Bay.

But the Packers’ head coach is eager to get to know him, particularly on the field.

“Dynamic football player. I love his running style,” McCarthy said. “He’s productive. I like his ability to get in and out of breaks. The best thing about him is the way (he can) change direction and explode on the second and third cut. I think he’s a good fit for us.”

Whether or not Michael will be able to join the team on the practice field on Thursday was uncertain.

His availability was brought to McCarthy’s attention by GM Ted Thompson late during Wednesday’s practice, and McCarthy had already seen rookie RB Don Jackson go down with a knee injury. A second-round draft pick out of Texas A&M by Seattle in 2013 — one pick after the Packers chose Eddie Lacy — Michael was a player McCarthy liked coming out of college. A lot of things made sense to put in the waiver claim by the deadline on Wednesday.

“He’s played a lot of football. He’s a veteran. I look for the transition to be pretty seamless,” McCarthy said. “There will be some carryover from his prior experiences. It’s really about language and understanding what we’re doing. Just like any new player, you work him in packages.”

On the injury front, McCarthy said both LB Clay Matthews and TE Jared Cook had good days at practice on Wednesday. He was interested to see how much each player would do in practice on Thursday, but both appear on the comeback trail.

CB Damarious Randall did not practice on Wednesday and is “moving along” on the team’s rehab plan, McCarthy said.

Other stories:

Hodkiewicz: Michael happy to call Green Bay ‘home’

Spofford: Matthews ready to return, for real this time

Spofford: On a day off: Hunting with Janis

Hodkiewicz: Packers assistants: ‘Good to see Cook back on the field’


Posted in Blog

Clay Matthews will practice in a limited capacity Wednesday

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 16, 2016 – 11:58 am

161116-matthews-950GREEN BAY — Packers linebacker Clay Matthews will practice on Wednesday in a limited capacity, according to Head Coach Mike McCarthy.

Matthews has missed the past three games due to a lingering hamstring injury. The six-time Pro Bowler was close to returning two weeks ago before suffering a setback leading up to the Packers’ Week 9 game against Indianapolis.

Matthews, who also missed the Packers’ Week 3 game against Detroit due to a hamstring issue, has 13 tackles and three sacks in five games this season.

Tight end Jared Cook (ankle) also continues to make progress after participating in his first padded practice last Thursday. He hasn’t played since Sept. 25 against Detroit.

“Jared Cook will practice today. Clay Matthews will practice today,” McCarthy said. “Those two guys will be limited. That’s the starting point and we’ll see how it goes from there.”

McCarthy said left tackle David Bakhtiari (knee) will be limited in Wednesday’s practice and right guard T.J. Lang (ankle) is scheduled to be part of the rehab program. Both offensive linemen exited against the Titans on Sunday and didn’t return.

The Packers (4-5) are looking to turn things around Sunday against Washington, which is a rematch of January’s wild-card game at FedEx Stadium.

“You definitely always look at your past experiences,” said McCarthy when asked about dealing with the team’s three-game losing streak. “That’s a part of developing your awareness and instincts. With that, you have to make sure it applies to your current situation. I do that. I think everybody does that. No one walks through the NFL unscathed. This is a tough spot, but it brings you back to your foundation.”

Tags: ,
Posted in Blog

Packers declare Clay Matthews out against Titans

Posted by Wes Hodkiewicz on November 11, 2016 – 10:06 am

161111-matthews-950GREEN BAY — Clay Matthews will miss his third consecutive game against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday due a hamstring injury, Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy confirmed Friday morning.

While Matthews won’t be available, McCarthy said he doesn’t have any long-term concern regarding Matthews’ hamstring, which flared up again late last week.

“I had a chance to talk with Clay (on Thursday),” McCarthy said. “He’s making progress, (but) just won’t be available this week.”

Matthews’ hamstring issues began in Week 2 against Minnesota, causing him to sit out of the Packers’ home-opener against Detroit on Sept. 25.

He returned after the Packers’ Week 4 bye week to start the next three games before experiencing tightness near end of the Packers’ 26-10 win over Chicago on Oct. 20.

Matthews practiced last week and appeared to be nearing a return before experiencing a setback last Friday and sitting out of Sunday’s 31-26 loss to Indianapolis.

The six-time Pro Bowl linebacker has 13 tackles and three sacks in five games this season. With Matthews out, the Packers will again turn to Nick Perry and Julius Peppers to keep pressure on Tennessee quarterback Marcus Mariota.

McCarthy didn’t make any other declarations on the team’s injured players, but said tight end Jared Cook (ankle), and running back James Starks (knee) and cornerback Damarious Randall (groin) continue to make progress after participating in Thursday’s padded practice.

“James is very close and we’ll see how Jared is come Saturday,” McCarthy said.

McCarthy added that receiver Randall Cobb should be a full go Sunday against the Titans. Cobb played only in the second half against the Colts due to a hamstring injury that sidelined him a week earlier against Atlanta.

Tags: , ,
Posted in Blog

On facing Titans QB Marcus Mariota: ‘We have to plaster our coverage’

Posted by Mike Spofford on November 10, 2016 – 5:53 pm

161110-mariota-950GREEN BAY — The Packers’ coordinators and defensive assistant coaches met with the media after practice late Thursday afternoon. Here’s a sampling of their comments.

Special teams coordinator Ron Zook
(on what FB Joe Kerridge could bring to the units)

“He’s an athletic guy.  He’s a sharp, intelligent guy. We’re trying to work him in there. The last couple days he’s done a nice job. You do so much in camp, and it’s hard to make that stuff up, but I’m looking forward to getting him on the field.”

(on changes with the Titans since they switched special teams coaches)

“Haven’t seen a whole lot of difference in terms of the things that they call. It’s hard in the middle of the season to change your philosophy.”

(on having the right personnel)

“We’ve had a couple bad plays, like anybody in the NFL has, but I don’t think it has anything to do with the size of our guys.

“Let’s take care of us. Let’s do the things we have to do. This is the time later in the year where your time gets cut back a little bit (in practice). You have to see the looks that you’re going to see in the game.”

Offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett
(on possibly getting TE Jared Cook back)

“He was explosive, provided some play-making abilities. He’s coming along.”

(on using so many different personnel groupings)

“You see a lot of new faces out there, and you see them have an opportunity. Each and every week, there could be a different personnel grouping, and guys are excited about that.”

(on tackles David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga)

“You talk about being consistent, and those guys have done that. We have to continue to do that moving forward.”

(on FB Aaron Ripkowski)

“You see him playing with an attitude.”

Defensive coordinator Dom Capers
(on Tennessee’s ground game)

“They’ve got a strong commitment to the running game, and they’ve got good people blocking up front. They’re inside guys are all fighters, they’re maulers. They play with three tight ends at times.”

(on RB DeMarco Murray)

“Murray is a big, physical guy. He’ll take the ball anywhere. If things are clogged up inside, he’ll take it outside on the perimeter. They have a number of things they challenge you with to get the ball on the perimeter. They put a premium on you communicating, because you’re changing your calls.”

(on making a statement with run defense)

“I think we just want to go in and play well. We know it’s going to start with stopping the run. They’re very efficient at what they do. They’re very good on third down, because they have a lot of third-and-1, third-and-2, not a lot of third-and-longs.”

(on their play-action game)

“You’ve got a running back and a tight end who are your two leading receivers. A lot of that is the play-action game.”

Associate head coach/linebackers Winston Moss
(on Nick Perry’s season)

“We’ve always known Nick is a very intelligent, very tough-minded guy. Once we felt he got through the offseason OK and his mindset was in the right place, there was an anticipation. We’re halfway through the season. He’s been very steady, very solid, and we’re looking for him to stay healthy and finish strong.”

(on Clay Matthews’ absence)

“I think the defense misses Clay Matthews. Clay is a playmaker. Clay is disruptive in the run and the pass. We’re looking forward to him getting back. He’s part of the puzzle that helps this defense win.”

(on the run defense)

“We feel very good about our ability to stop the run. We feel we can line up and play anybody, but we have to play well.”

Defensive line coach Mike Trgovac
(on playing run defense vs. Tennessee)

“If you get too caught up in all the shifts and all the motions …. If you let that stuff get to you, you’ll see a steady dose of it. You just have to calm down and play football. You have to stay sound. Just settle down, stay poised, and play your techniques.”

Assistant linebackers coach Scott McCurley
(on run defense vs. Tennessee)

“They do a good job of presenting new problems every week, new looks for you. You have to make sure your checks are on point, your communication is on point, read your keys. Because if you’re behind … your eyes probably won’t be right and you’ll be behind on the play.”

(on RB Murray and TE Walker in the passing game)

“The quarterback does a great job getting to his checkdowns. You have to respect their ability in the pass game. It becomes more difficult when you get the run action and releases by tight ends. It’ll be a great challenge to stop the run and defend those two in the pass game.”

(on LB Jake Ryan)

“He’s playing faster.”

Cornerbacks coach Joe Whitt Jr.
(on facing QB Mariota and his running ability)

“We have to be able to plaster our coverage. He can create time with his legs. He has a rocket arm. He can throw on the run. We have to make sure when the down is extended we stay close to our coverage. I don’t know if we’ve seen a quarterback who can quite move like this guy. I don’t think we’ve faced this type of guy this year.”

(on Gunter’s season)

“I look at ‘Gunt’ and I think this. He’s a guy that came into the year as the 4. He’s been thrust into the role not only where he’s the 1 but we’ve matched him. You want to show you’re deserving of the role. He wants to show he can be the guy, but there’s some growing pains. It’s different being the 4 and being the 1. I think he’s learning from the mistakes he has made. He’s been targeted more. For the most part, I’ve been pleased with the way he’s handled the challenge, and I’m excited to see him play this week.”

Safeties coach Darren Perry
(on Clinton-Dix’s good plays, bad play vs. Colts)

“Just like most competitors, guys that play in this league, you have a tendency to remember the bad plays, and that’s normal. We’ll learn from it, and I think the next time we get an opportunity, the results will be different.”

(on Brice)

“He still has a ways to go. He does some good things, and he’s flashed, and I love his physicality, but he’s still a rookie. Every day is a learning experience for him. He’s working hard, not making excuses. We’re pushing him, he’s pushing himself. You see things that you like. We’ll keep coaching him up and keep grinding.”

(on Brice’s physicality)

“He’s got the ability to knock people back. That play in Atlanta, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that, the way he defied the law of gravity you could say. I’ve seen guys turn that play down. To me that was one of the most impressive plays I’ve seen in quite some time. Just the effort and the will. A lot of guys would concede that play.”


Posted in Blog