GREEN BAY PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(overall thoughts) “Our football team improved tonight. You always want to win the game, but you really look at the quality of play and the play style. I think over these three weeks, these first three preseason games, that the play style is kind of what we’re looking for. The quality of play is something that we’ll continue to work on. This penalty environment that we’re in right now is a challenge for everybody and we need to keep working through that. But overall, without viewing the film, I felt like we took a step tonight.”
(on how he feels the number one defensive unit performed) “I think our number one defense, we had that one big play that we gave up, but other than that, I thought we dominated the line of scrimmage. Three-and-outs speak for themselves so I was very pleased with the first unit.”
(on his running backs) “You never have enough running backs; the history around here will speak to that. The goal is to have as many of those guys, particularly those three to line up and play first, second and third downs. We had some things tonight that we’ll definitely learn from, particularly on third down. That’s the goal. We want to line up and keep playing.”
(on if Richard Rodgers is working toward a starting job) “Well, I think it’s obvious that Richard is definitely going to be a big part of it. I think it’s been evident for some time now. As far as starters, once again, we don’t line up and play with 11. We’ve always kept a number of tight ends. I’ve always looked at the tight end position as a four-down position. I really like what Richard has done with his opportunities.”
(on how Scott Tolzien played) “I think Scott, I feel redundant, I still look at him as a young player that is improving. I thought that he definitely improved tonight. We went to what we refer to as a standard huddle with multiple personnel groups and I thought he handled that very well. I liked the way he played tonight.”
PACKERS QB AARON RODGERS:
(on how he feels about the eight preseason drives he has had) “I think we’re ready. I think it’s been a good preseason. We’ve scored some points, moved the ball, saw what we wanted to see out of our skill players and the offensive line.”
(on if he’s concerned about the hits he took on the second and third series) “No concerns. That’s correctable stuff, that’s good defense, a lot of veteran players on that side of the ball. So they made a couple plays and hit me one time when Richard (Rodgers) let his guy get through and they had a stunt for a sack.”
(on opening at the Seahawks in the regular season) “It’ll be a good test for us. That’s a great football team, they’ve got a great home-field advantage and it’ll be a great environment. We know what that was like in the ’11 season when New Orleans came to us. It’s exciting, you’re at home, it’s the first game of the year, so there’s going to be a lot of energy in that place and it’s a tough place to win.”
(on if he’s accomplished more this preseason than previous years) “(Quarterbacks coach) Alex (Van Pelt) challenged me to do a couple things in this preseason and we’ve hit a couple of those, but I think it’s good when you can take a couple shots – not too many – but a couple shots in live action. We had some adversity at times with some poor execution but we still put 20 points on the board and had three scoring drives and a lot of plays in the first half. We had a lot of things we wanted to hit.”
(on how smooth the transition has been with JC Tretter and Richard Rodgers) “Probably more than we thought as far as the smoothness with those two guys. JC’s done a great job. He’s an intelligent guy, he’s a tough player and he’s done a great job. And Richard has really done a good job with his opportunities. He’s a smart guy who’s going to just keep on getting better.”
(on the play of the defense) “They’re playing good. We’ve got a lot of guys who can rush the passer, we’ve got a lot of guys that can cover. It’s just a matter of letting those guys loose. We run a lot of stuff in practice and might not have seen all of it in the preseason, which is normal. But as they start to amp it up a little bit the next few days I’m sure everybody’s going to be excited about what those guys can do.”
(on being able to sustain the offensive pace for a full game) “I’m worried about the offensive line. There’s a couple of guys who are a little overweight (smiling), I think, so they’ve got to work a little harder and be smarter with their eating habits this week and get ready for a long game. This is how we’re going to run the offense. We’ve been doing it in practice, trying to be up-tempo and they’ve got to keep up – and they will.”
(on the improvement of Eddie Lacy) “He was pretty damn good the first year. He’s a great player and he’s going to have a great season for us. He’s a football player. He knows how to play the game, he’s smart. He’s incredible with his blitz pickups and understanding the offense, and he’s just a talented guy. We know what we got in him and we gave him the ball on the first drive a bunch and got him out of there.”
PACKERS SAFETY MICAH HYDE:
(on defense bouncing back after long TD run) “You’ve got to be happy with the way the defense bounced back. Like I said, we want to go out there and set the tone early. We gave up that long run and then after that we kind of just put our foot down and said no more of that. So you know it was tough that first drive, but after that I felt like we got some momentum and we tried to move in the right direction.”
(on momentum and whether the team is completely ready heading into the regular season) “Definitely not. I don’t think so at all. Like I said, we left some plays out there, you know that long run they had, a couple big passes, we left some plays out there so I don’t think we’re 100 percent ready at all.”
(on getting prepared for the regular season) “Just keep moving every day. Every day just keep getting better. You know we’re going to watch film tomorrow, come in on Sunday and have another practice and get better. That’s all you can ask for right now, the regular season is approaching quick and we got another tune-up, another preseason game, to get ready for.”
(on starters not playing in the fourth preseason game) “I feel like this week of practice is going to be big. You know, knowing that is the case, that starters don’t play that much in the fourth preseason game, I think that practice is going to be huge. We’re going to go out there and throw it around. And I’m sure we’re going to have some stuff for Seattle, but like I said it’s the last tune-up for the regular season.”
PACKERS RUNNING BACK EDDIE LACY:
(on playing time) “I mean that’s just the way it played out. You know going in I didn’t know how many series I would go, but Coach liked the first drive.”
(on first drive compared to subsequent drives) “I think the defensive line was flowing a lot. The linebackers were flowing a lot, which was opening up the back cut, but after that drive I don’t think they flowed as much so it was kind of difficult for the runner to tell his lanes.”
(on the rest of running backs) “DuJuan had a great night tonight. He had a lot of explosive runs and a screen for 31 yards, I think it was, so he definitely got a lot of work in today and we’re looking forward to the season.”
(on defenses playing him different from rookie season) “I don’t know; I really can’t tell. I mean I’ve had success my only two drives in the preseason so far but you know it’s just preseason Week 1 and I’ll definitely be able to tell if it’s different this year compared to last year.”
(on the depth at running back) “I think it’s great because we have three backs that are able to play at any time so I think going through the season, it’s a long season, so with us three back there we should be able to stay fresh and be able to go fast all season.”
PACKERS LINEBACKER/DEFENSIVE END JULIUS PEPPERS:
(on what he needs to get better at after this game) “Everything. You need to get better at everything. You need to wrap up better and tackle. It’s always going to be room for improvement.”
(on settling in with the team): “Yeah, I’m pretty comfortable. I feel good. Trying to knock a little rust off before we get to these real games.”
OAKLAND RAIDERS HEAD COACH DENNIS ALLEN:
(on his first thoughts) “Disappointed in the loss. We lost to a good football team today. It was a good opportunity to measure ourselves to exactly where we’re at. We’re obviously not there yet as a football team. We’re going to get there, but obviously we’re not there yet. Lot of areas we’ve got to improve, the unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, got to get that cleaned up…We’ve got to learn from that and correct that. That’s my responsibility to get that corrected. Offensively, we’ve got to improve ourselves on the passing game and that’s a full-time team effort. That’s not about one individual. We’ve got to be able to convert third downs and keep those drives alive. I didn’t think our tackling was that good early in the game. I thought midway through the game it got better and then again I thought it got a little sloppy toward the end.”
(on confidence they can accomplish what they have to) “We’ve got a good group of guys that are working hard in there. Really, it comes down to, in a couple instances, a little bit of focus and concentration. We’ve got to continue to work, take advantage of the opportunities.”
(on Khalil Mack looked) “I thought he looked like how I thought he would look. I’ve been saying all along that he’s going to be a factor for us and he’s going to be an explosive player for us and I thought we saw some of that today. He’s still got a long way to go, got a lot of things he’s got to get better, but I think we all saw some of the things he can bring to the table.”
(on updates about Sio Moore) “The initial word is a neck strain, I don’t know what kind of timeline that means. The most encouraging thing is that he is fine. I think he’s back here in the building.”
(on progress of passing game) “In the National Football League, there’s not a lot of wide open guys. You’ve got to be able to play in a contested environment. That’s what NFL football is all about.”
(on Matt Schaub) “I think I would need to look at the tape and see where we’re at. We’ve got to improve in the passing game. Matt’s part of that, but everybody else is part of that too.”
RAIDERS QUARTERBACK MATT SCHAUB:
(on how close they are to getting things worked out) “We better be close to being ready for the regular season shortly. We got off to a good start, which is what we wanted to do. We sort of stubbed our toe a few times there especially in the second quarter. We just didn’t execute. We need to be better than that.”
(on whether it is a unit-wide problem) “This game, especially on the road against a good opponent, you need everyone doing their job each and every play.”
(on the biggest things they need to work on) “Be more consistent on first, second and third down. First drive of the game, throughout the whole thing, play at a high level and play at that standard consistently.”
RAIDERS WIDE RECEIVER JAMES JONES:
(on the game) “I feel like we are getting better every time we take the field. We had a couple opportunities that we let slip away on our part that really didn’t have anything to do with their defense, but I have been over there. That is a great football team. They have a lot of good players over there, a good coach, and I think they will be a playoff team. It was a good challenge for us to be able to go against a defense like that.”
(on if he thinks the Packers defense will be improved this season) “I think they all understand each other pretty well and I think that is what is helping them out right now. They have a real good feel for one another. They are going out there trusting one another and playing with each other. I think if they can stay healthy they will be a great defense.”
(on transitioning from Green Bay to Oakland) “It is going good. I love it. I am just excited about the challenge to help get this organization back on the right track. This has been a winning organization in the past. We have some work to do. It was a good challenge for us today, but we accept the challenge and we are going to get better.”
RAIDERS SAFETY CHARLES WOODSON:
(on Green Bay’s no-huddle offense) “That no-huddle is a beast. It can keep a defense on its heels. You have a quarterback that is smart as he is in picking up what you are trying to do. They kept us off balance that first drive and went down there and scored easily. I felt like we settled down a little bit, but then we had some penalties that kept it alive on third down. So I felt like we played well against them aside from that first drive.”
(on being back in Green Bay) “There was a lot of love out there and I could feel it. There were a lot of people chanting my name. I could still see a lot of 21 jerseys. It felt good to go out there and receive that kind of welcome. It was exactly what I felt like it would be because the fans here understand that when I went out there, I left it all on the field every week.”
(on rookie linebacker Khalil Mack) “He is a young guy that has a lot on his plate, but I think he is going to be fine. You saw the flashes tonight with his interception on the screen play. Those are the types of plays that he has the potential to make and we are confident that he will make those going forward. We feel like he is going to be a great player.”
RAIDERS DEFENSIVE END LAMARR WOODLEY:
(on his first quarter sack) “It was good defensive call. Our linebacker on that side did a great job of coming over there and freeing me up and I was the one that got the glory.”
(on limiting Green Bay’s offense after their first touchdown) “It was just guys doing what they are supposed to do. Guys being where they are supposed to be and not doing other people’s jobs. Once we got all the guys on the same page we were able to make some plays. I feel pretty good about our starting defense.”
Tags: #OAKvsGB, oakland raiders, postgame quotes
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 1 Comment »
GREEN BAY–The battle for the backup quarterback job might be on the line in the preseason finale against the Chiefs next Thursday.
Scott Tolzien capped an 11-play, 80-yard touchdown drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Alex Gillett early in the fourth quarter of the Packers’ 31-21 win over the Raiders at Lambeau Field on Friday night.
Tolzien and incumbent backup quarterback Matt Flynn are locked in a competition that’s too close to call after three preseason games. In the win over the Raiders, Flynn was four of 10 for 37 yards and an interception. Tolzien was eight of 11 for 107 yards and a touchdown.
Aaron Rodgers played most of the first half and completed nine of 20 passes for 139 yards and two touchdowns.
Other than for allowing Maurice Jones-Drew a 40-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, the Packers defense dominated the action.
The Raiders tacked on two late-game touchdowns, with Matt McGloin throwing to Brice Butler on both occasions.
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GREEN BAY–A Mason Crosby field goal increased the Packers’ lead over the Raiders to 25-7, as the two teams headed into the fourth quarter of Friday’s game at Lambeau Field.
The third quarter began with the Raiders playing their No. 1 offense against a Packers defense of reserves. Matt Schaub completed a 40-yard pass to Denarius Moore to the Packers 25. Schaub then completed an apparent 14-yard touchdown pass to James Jones, Demetri Goodson in coverage, but replay review reversed the call. On fourth-and-9, Schaub threw high and out of the back of the end zone.
Matt Flynn remained at quarterback for the Packers, but was unable to move the sticks.
After recovering a Raiders fumble, the Packers began a drive at their 43. On third-and-10, Flynn pitched a strike to Myles White that carried for 19 yards and a first down at the Raiders 13. Flynn threw the pass into the face of a fierce rush. The drive stalled and Crosby came on to attempt a 41-yard field goal. It was good and the Packers led, 25-7, with 4:10 to play.
The Raiders faced a fourth-and-2 at the Packers 49. Matt McGloin completed a 20-yard pass to Latavius Murray. On the next play, pass-rush phenom Jayrone Elliott sacked McGloin for a loss of 15 yards. Elliott had batted down a pass a few plays earlier. The Packers forced a punt with :37 to play in the third quarter.
The third quarter ended with Scott Tolzien at quarterback for the Packers.
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 5 Comments »
Andrew from La Crosse, WI
Vic, after that offensive display in the first quarter, I am officially worried.
You were officially worried when you woke up this morning.
Tyler from Lincoln, NE
Great tackle by Micah Hyde in the first quarter. Covers like a corner and tackles like a linebacker. I feel like that’s a player who should play safety on every play. Do you agree?
I think he has that kind of ability, but let’s allow the competition at safety to play out.
Josh from Lincoln, NE
Is this really our first team offense playing?
Give Andrew a call. He’s officially worried. You can officially worry with him.
Tim from Clear Lake, WI
Can you really set a tempo or tone during preseason? In a few days a lot of these guys won’t be on the roster.
You can’t set a tone in preseason. All you can do is survive it and evaluate it.
Dustin from Maplewood, NJ
I’m seeing a lot of people say this is the best offensive line the Packers have had in years. Do you agree?
Yes, I do. What I’m seeing is a lot of people that refuse to believe this is the best offensive line the Packers have had in years.
Randy from Lakewood Ranch, FL
I am listening to the game on radio and it sounds like all phases are struggling. Is it as bad as it sounds?
It’s 22-7 in the Packers’ favor. What’s so bad about that? Six more quarters and the preseason will be over. I am officially happy.
Dan from Houston, TX
The defense isn’t perfect, but it looks good enough. Will that be enough to beat the best?
We have yet to see what Dom Capers has planned for the regular season. Julius Peppers got a sack the old-fashioned way; he beat his man. I like that a lot. Most of all, I like the way the secondary is playing. Their coverage is tight; it was last week, too.
Russ from La Crosse, WI
Two touchdowns, two attempts at two points. Is this going to be the norm?
It’s three for three now. It’s practice and the Packers are practicing 2-point attempts. I guess they figure they don’t need to practice their PAT kicks.
Jay from Arlington Heights, IL
Vic, missed tackles happen, but I’m seeing the big guys eat blocks and the linebackers running to the ball. I’m happy.
Did you see Datone Jones hold the point of attack and make the tackle on a run to the Raiders’ left? That’s very encouraging. Look for the little things.
Jerry from Wilmington, NC
Vic, did you get a chance to visit with Jones-Drew?
I’m going to run over to the Raiders’ locker room after the Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers press conferences, and hope I get there in time to say hello to a really good football player and a guy I like.
Jordon from Tampa, FL
Hi, Vic, I’m a big Packers fan and while watching the game I noticed a few players on the sideline were on spin bikes warming up. I wonder if the players could reduce hamstring injuries (that have been plaguing the league) if they would raise the seat to an almost full leg extension to stretch the hamstring out while pedaling. With the seat so low, they are only working their Vastus Medialis and Rectus Femoris. Just an observation I made. What are your thoughts?
Maybe they’re trying to work their Rectus Femoris.
Jack from Reston, VA
Vic, McCarthy said he wanted to try 2-point conversions during the preseason to prepare for when it is used in the regular season. While I see his point, wouldn’t it be smarter to practice extra points more, especially with the new rule change?
The PAT rule isn’t changing. The experiment ended with this past Monday’s game. It’s back to the 2-yard line.
Ryan from Irvine, CA
Vic, I just ran out of beer and it’s barely the second quarter (poor planning). What do I do?
Do you have a spin bike?
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 30 Comments »
GREEN BAY — Two more touchdowns by the No. 1 offense in the second quarter gave the Packers a 22-7 lead over the Oakland Raiders at halftime on Friday night at Lambeau Field.
The Packers shook off some offensive sluggishness at the start of the second quarter with a 67-yard TD drive, aided by a Raiders personal foul on the first play.
RB DuJuan Harris then took a screen pass 31 yards into the red zone, and on fourth-and-3, the Packers decided to go for it. QB Aaron Rodgers hit WR Jordy Nelson on a quick hitch as Nelson slipped away from CB TJ Carrie and walked into the end zone for a 12-yard TD. On the previous play, Carrie had broken up a potential TD pass to Nelson in the end zone.
The Packers’ second try at a 2-point conversion failed, and Green Bay led 14-7 with 13:37 left in the half.
Green Bay’s defense then recorded its fourth straight three-and-out. On the ensuing drive, Oakland LB Sio Moore went down following a run by RB DuJuan Harris and had to be removed from the field on a stretcher.
The Packers continued that drive and added another TD, taking 14 plays in all. Right after the injury, Harris took a pass for 11 yards and a few snaps later, RB James Starks caught a short lob pass and went 23 yards to make it first-and-goal. The Raiders got the stop on third down inside the 10, but an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on DL Antonio Smith gave the Packers a fresh set of goal-to-go downs, and Rodgers hit TE Andrew Quarless on third down for a 6-yard TD.
Starks ran in the 2-point play, following another Raiders penalty that put the ball on the 1-yard line, and the Packers led 22-7 with 5:58 left in the half. That was it for Rodgers and the No. 1 offense, with the QB finishing his night 9-of-20 for 139 yards and 2 TDs.
The Packers No. 2 offense had one good chance to score, following a fourth-down stop by the defense when the Raiders went for it from the Green Bay 26-yard line. A sack/strip by LB Nick Perry and subsequent recovery and return by Mike Neal all the way to the Oakland 39-yard line gave the Packers great field position, but QB Matt Flynn’s pass on the very next play was picked off by Raiders LB Khalil Mack.
A holding penalty on the Raiders’ final drive of the half pushed them out of field goal range, and a Hail Mary pass into the end zone on the last play was batted down, incomplete.
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GREEN BAY–The Packers and Raiders each scored on their opening drives of the game, but a two-point conversion allowed the Packers to take an 8-7 lead into the second quarter of Friday night’s preseason game at Lambeau Field.
The Packers’ opening drive began at their 27-yard line following a 34-yard kickoff return by DuJuan Harris. On third-and-2, Aaron Rodgers hit Richard Rodgers for 32 yards. Two runs by Eddie Lacy gained 12 and 17 yards, first and goal at the Raiders 4-yard line.
Lacy scored from a yard out on second-and-goal. Aaron Rodgers threw to Jordy Nelson for the 2-point conversion, 8-0 with 11:53 to play.
The Raiders’ first possession began at their 40-yard line following a Mason Crosby kickoff that sailed out of bounds. On third-and-2, Maurice Jones-Drew pulled away from Morgan Burnett’s attempted tackle, and Jones-Drew raced 40 yards for a touchdown. The Raiders trailed, 8-7, with 9:23 to play.
From the 20, Aaron Rodgers immediately went back to Richard Rodgers to start the Packers’ second possession. James Starks, who replaced Lacy, punched out a first down.
On fourth-and-1 at the Packers 40, Starks gained a first down, but a holding penalty against JC Tretter moved the ball back to the 30 and forced a Packers punt.
Oakland took possession at its 37 and Julius Peppers sacked Matt Schaub for a 5-yard loss.
The first quarter ended with the Packers at the 50-yard line.
Tags: #OAKvsGB, oakland raiders
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GREEN BAY — Kickoff for preseason game No. 3 is a little more than an hour away, and the Packers will be without CB Casey Hayward for the matchup with the Raiders at Lambeau Field.
Hayward was limited in practice on Tuesday, when Head Coach Mike McCarthy said the team was “being smart” with Hayward, given his history of hamstring trouble. Hayward then sat out Thursday’s short practice and will not suit up tonight.
Hayward missed all but a few games last season due to recurring hamstring troubles. Coincidentally or not, Hayward’s first preseason action last season came in the third game, after missing the first two-plus weeks of camp, and in that game he re-aggravated the hamstring injury for the first time.
Others not suiting up for the Packers tonight are RB Rajion Neal (knee), LB Joe Thomas (knee), OL Don Barclay (knee), WR Jared Abbrederis (knee), TE Brandon Bostick and DL Letroy Guion (hamstring).
Longest look: McCarthy said this week the starters would play the longest in this game, which could mean as much as the entire first half. The starters played into the early stages of the second quarter in last week’s game in St. Louis.
Weather update: It’s a humid but not overly hot night in Green Bay, with temperatures at kickoff expected to be in the high 70s with the humidity in the 80-90 percent range. Chances for rain are very small, however.
For a quick video preview, be sure to check out “Final Thoughts.”
Roster cut looming: Tonight will be the last preseason game before the roster cut to 75 players. Roster cuts are not due to the league until Tuesday, but it’s likely the Packers will make their roster decisions before the next practice, slated for Sunday.
The roster currently stands at 88 players. If Barclay and Abbrederis are placed on injured reserve, as expected due to their injuries being season-ending, that would leave less than a dozen other roster moves to be made.
One more to go: The Packers will wrap up the preseason next Thursday, at home against Kansas City. After that final preseason game, the roster will have to be reduced to 53 players.
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As per team tradition, the Packers select game captains each week. Today’s captains will be QB Aaron Rodgers (offense), CB Tramon Williams (defense) and LS Brett Goode (special teams).
Tags: #GBvsOAK, aaron rodgers, brett goode, captains, oakland raiders, tramon williams
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 3 Comments »
GREEN BAY–Packers Coach Mike McCarthy said undrafted free agent tight end Colt Lyerla has been waived, and McCarthy’s comments at Wednesday’s press conference would suggest Lyerla would be assigned to the team’s injured reserve list if he clears waivers.
“I know Colt was waived injured. That’s his status right now. You have to take it as an opportunity to improve yourself,” McCarthy said on Wednesday.
Lyerla sustained a knee injury while attempting to hurdle a defender during the Packers’ “Family Night” practice. He hasn’t practiced since.
The Packers signed Lyerla following last spring’s draft. He was a top prospect at Oregon until off-the-field difficulties derailed his college career.
“What he’s been through in the past, it’s a learning process. I feel like we have him on a good path,” McCarthy said.
Because the Packers waived Lyerla instead of assigning him directly to injured reserve, he wouldn’t count against the Packers’ 90-man roster should he clear waivers and then be assigned to IR.
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 24 Comments »
Former Packers safety Nick Collins announced his retirement on his personal Twitter account on Tuesday night.
Collins, a second-round draft pick in 2005 and three-time Pro Bowler (2008-10) suffered what turned out to be a career-ending neck injury while making a tackle of Panthers RB Jonathan Stewart in Carolina in Week 2 of the 2011 season.
He was placed on injured reserve and released at the end of the season. He was never signed by another team.
Collins returned to Lambeau Field last season for the NFC Wild Card playoff game against San Francisco and was introduced to a loud ovation from the home fans.
He tied a single-season team record in 2008 with three interception returns for touchdowns, and he’ll be best remembered for his interception return for a touchdown in the first quarter of Super Bowl XLV, a key play in the 31-25 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Tags: nick collins
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 17 Comments »