HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(on opening statement) “Tough loss. You never want to lose at home, obviously. Division game. I thought offensively, we got off to a fast start, but didn’t convert there in the red zone. After the injury to Aaron Rodgers, I thought we ran the ball very well, but we were not very productive in the passing game, especially on third down. We had a few series where we were on the fringe, had good field position and we couldn’t quite convert on third down. That was a key to the defensive effort by the Bears and our inability to get that particular third down for more points. Defensively, we didn’t do a very good job stopping the run. The tackling, to me, without seeing the tape, looked like a lot of missed tackles and also the passing game. The way the fourth quarter went, disappointing. It has kind of been a disappointment for our football team as the year has moved on. It’s a situation that we’ve continued to focus on and tried to improve on, but it did not happen tonight. I thought special teams played well. They recovered the surprise onside kick and did a pretty good job on Devin Hester.”
(on Aaron Rodgers injury) “Aaron Rodgers injury, I just had a chance to speak to Aaron before he went up to the training room, he has a shoulder injury. They want to run more tests. They don’t have an exact diagnosis. That’s where we are. We’ll have more information for you, probably tomorrow.”
(on if he had a chance to talk to Rodgers at halftime) “No, I didn’t. I didn’t have a chance to talk to him. After the game is the only chance I really had to talk to him. Halftime is kind of a busy time for coaches, making adjustments. I saw him off in the distance, but I didn’t have the chance to talk to him.”
(on his confidence level in Seneca Wallace) “Seneca, he needs to perform better and he’ll definitely do that with a week of practice. We’re on a short week, we’re on a six-day week. We have the Eagles coming in here, new staff, uncommon opponent, so we need to do a better job in the passing game. It was obvious tonight, the third downs were something that held us back. We ran the ball well, particularly when they were loading up against the run there. It’s a disappointing loss, no doubt. We fully expected to win the game, we had some opportunities. We have no excuses. We didn’t play well enough, they beat us.”
(on if it’s a challenge to get a backup quarterback ready) “It’s the same thing that everybody goes through. Aaron takes a lot of reps during the week. Seneca’s (reps) are probably on the low side of backups. We do a lot of work with our backup guys after practice and things like that. But there’s nothing like live reps and I think it was evident tonight.”
(on Eddie Lacy’s performance) “I thought he ran hard. He came out after halftime and he takes that first one almost to the house. From what I saw, I thought Eddie Lacy played very well.”
(on how much of the offense is based on Rodgers’ calls at the line of scrimmage) “Well, Aaron is a huge part of our offense now. We’ve been at this thing for how many years as far as the no huddle, and this is something that has been built over time with Aaron as the centerpiece. I don’t think it’s realistic to put anybody in there and think they’re going to pick up and run it the way he has run it. But it’s our job as coaches to make sure that Seneca is comfortable and put him into positions, put him into concepts that we can execute and be successful in. I thought we did that on first and second down, but third down was an issue tonight.”
(on the Bears receivers) “We knew going in they were big, physical receivers. They did a good job blocking us, probably factored into the run game production. I can’t be specific without looking at the video. They had separation on us in coverage and they made a lot of plays. They had a lot of production on offense.”
(on the Packers onside kick) “I was trying to steal a series. It was something that we had been working on. I thought the timing was right. We came out and had the stop there in the second half, and were able to get the seven points and we were trying to ride that momentum wave. I felt our football team needed it and it was a great job by our group. We went down and got three points out of it. I thought it was a good opportunity and worth the risk.”
(on how his team reacted once Rodgers left the game with his injury) “I thought the team reacted well. Frankly, we had a bunch of injuries. Getting Seneca ready wasn’t the only thing that was going on over on the sidelines. Our special teams group had a lot of changes. We lost three linebackers in about two plays. We had a lot of activity tonight.”
QUARTERBACK SENECA WALLACE:
(on how prepared he felt for tonight considering his lack of practice reps) “I felt pretty good. Obviously, not getting the reps in practice, you’ve got to go out there and just try to play. I tried my best. I put a lot of pressure on myself to make sure there’s not a letdown from what Aaron (Rodgers) is doing and what I’m doing. But obviously it’s tough to get put in that situation, to go there and not have a lack… You want to go out there and compete. That’s what I’m about. I love to compete and I put a lot on myself. I feel like I should have played better.”
(on if he was comfortable right away) “It takes a little bit to get in the swing of things, obviously, (with) not getting reps in practice. But I’ve been in this situation before and it definitely will get better.”
(on if he felt they were just a play away from getting some drives going) “We missed a couple things. Obviously, the timing and things like that, but like I said, if I made some better throws, I feel like we could’ve got some good things going, got a couple first downs, got a little momentum going. The offensive line did great. We ran the ball well. I’ve just got to make some better plays here and there.”
(on if he’s preparing to start next week) “My mindset is just keep moving forward whatever situation is called, and I’m prepared to be the starter. I’ll continue to keep pushing and get better.”
(on how he feels he fits in this offense with his skill set) “Honestly, I feel like my skill set is good. I think that I was brought here for a reason, and, like I said, it’s going to get a lot better. It’s a tough situation to get put in the first quarter, but I’ve just got to keep fighting. I know that regardless of what happens this week I’m going to keep preparing and it’ll get better if I’m playing.”
(on what his teammates said to him when he came in the game) “They know I’ve been working the last eight weeks I’ve been here, and they are confident regardless of whoever’s in there. We’ve got to have confidence and know we can move the ball, and do the things we need to do regardless of who’s playing quarterback. They looked at me and said ‘Let’s go,’ and I know I’ve got to go there and perform at a high level for them.”
(on what the Bears were doing schematically) “Nothing really. They did what they thought we saw on film. I think I put lot on myself to play a lot better than what I did in the situation, but we’re going to move forward and get better for next week.”
(on if T.J. Lang’s injury put any more pressure on him) “It’s been that situation for the last couple weeks. It’s the next man up, and we’ll continue to keep fighting.”
(on if he could tell Rodgers was hurting when playing catch on the sideline with him) “I knew he was in a little bit of pain, but we didn’t know what was going on.”
(on how much of the offense he’s learned in eight weeks) “I learned a lot. I think now it’s about timing and getting the reps in practice. It’ll get better.”
(on how much he can cram in this week if he’s the starter) “I’ll just keep grinding, regardless of how much they put on my plate. (I’ll) just continue to keep playing, go back to the basics and things that I’ve learned in the past. I’m in this situation for a reason and I’ll put it in God’s hands. I know I’ll continue to keep preparing and get ready for the week.”
RUNNING BACK EDDIE LACY:
(on what head coach Mike McCarthy’s message was after the game) “Pretty much that we can play a lot better than we did. We left a lot out there on the field, and we just have to correct it, forget about this and move on. We have a lot of football left to be played.”
(on his 56-yard run) “It was perfectly blocked. I just had to make one guy miss and run as fast as I could.”
(on losing QB Aaron Rodgers early in the game) “He’s the heart and soul of this team – offense and defense. It took a lot out of us. We tried to step up the best we could.”
(on what he thought when Rodgers went down with the injury) “I just knew we were going to have to run the ball a lot more. I thought, just try to hold onto the ball, don’t turn it over and give them momentum.”
WIDE RECEIVER JORDY NELSON:
(on losing QB Aaron Rodgers early in the game) “We don’t want to lose anyone, especially our quarterback, and someone who’s that good. Sometimes it happens. I think Seneca (Wallace) came in and did alright. We were able to make some plays, just not enough. The run game was good and we made some explosive plays, but they made more plays than we did.”
(on the impact if Rodgers is out long-term) “I think we’ll be fine. We dealt with this a few years ago. Obviously, that wasn’t as long as this possibly could be – we don’t know. We trust Seneca (Wallace). He has a proven track record and he’s been around the league long enough. We have all the faith in the world in him. He’s going to get plenty of reps now, we’ll get that chemistry down and we’ll be ready to roll. It’s just another opportunity for someone else in this locker room to step up.”
DEFENSIVE TACKLE B.J. RAJI:
(on the loss) “We have a high standard here at the Green Bay Packers, and tonight we just lost to a team that played harder than us.”
(on what he thought when QB Aaron Rodgers went down with the injury) “Honestly, my first thought was that we were going to be fine. We were going to rise together as a team. That wasn’t the case tonight, and we’re going to get better. Tonight the Bears were the better team.”
(on the impact if Rodgers is out long-term) “He’s the best quarterback in the league. Take what you want from that. But that’s why it’s a team game. We have to step up and play better on defense.”
(on what the defense could have done better tonight) “No. 1 is just tackling and understanding our scheme. (Defensive Coordinator Dom Capers) had a good scheme in place. At times, we were getting outside our integrity. We allowed a lot of tosses and runs inside with traps. (The Bears) did a good job and we weren’t ready to play tonight.”
(on the Bears’ final offensive drive) “It was frustrating. That’s not like us. Give the Bears credit. They played better than us tonight. They had a good game plan and they stuck with it.”
Tags: #CHIvsGB, chicago bears, quotes
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 25 Comments »
HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY
Initial comments …
“Today was obviously a very tough loss for our football team. I thought it was definitely a game of peaks and valleys, a lot of moments of adversity going through the start of the game and getting down 14-0. The way our defense responded, I really felt it picked our football team up generating takeaways, being able to come into halftime with the lead.”
“We had a great start there in the third quarter and then we had some momentum plays clearly go against us. I thought the two personal fouls on the two drives that resulted in touchdowns for Cincinnati were big momentum plays.
“Obviously the two takeaways from the Bengals, the interceptions, were big plays. But we still had a chance to go down in the final drive with a chance to win the game. We didn’t get that done. And I’m skipping over probably the biggest play of the game — the fourth-down call.
“Big plays, production are a big part of the NFL. It’s something we feel we do a pretty darn good job of, but we came out on the short end and, obviously, came out in the short end on the scoreboard. Those are my thoughts. With that, I’ll take your questions.”
How much adversity did you have to go through after losing RB James Starks, TE Jermichael Finley and LB Clay Matthews to injury?
“That’s the challenge of our game; you have to be able to adjust on the sidelines. Losing Jermichael early like that, he was a featured player today. So you adjust. I thought Ryan Taylor did some good things. I thought Andrew Quarless started slow, but he did some good things. But it affects your rhythm. The ultimately that’s probably affected the most by that is our quarterback.
“Johnathan Franklin came in when James got hurt right before halftime. I thought James was in a groove. We knew it was probably going to be tough sledding early against this defensive front. But we felt if we could sustain it for four quarters, we’d be able to have some more success. Johnathan came in and did a heck of a job. He obviously had the one (negative) play there on the fourth down. But it’s tough. It was definitely one of the most different games I’ve had in all my time.”
What was your thinking on going for it on fourth down?
“It was really on the mark. It was based on probability. You think it’s going to be close, so it was an inches play. We had a couple things going on. It was something that we talked about. Obviously we thought we could convert it. That’s why we called the play. We didn’t get it done. That’s the profession of play calling. When it works, it’s excellent execution by the players. When it doesn’t, it’s the play callers. I had confidence in Mason (Crosby) going in. We were inside the mark in our field goal. It had nothing to do with that. I just felt that we had a chance to convert and get another set of downs, and particularly have their defense on the field for another long drive.”
As a play caller, what thoughts went through your mind during the challenge of the spot of the football the play before fourth down?
“With the challenge, you obviously had plenty of time to think about it. I probably over thought it, because my initial thought was to kick the field goal. I’m paid to make those decisions. We they go wrong, I’m responsible.”
QB AARON RODGERS
Have you been in a game quite like this?
“It was a frustrating game. To spot them 14, score 30 in a row and then they scored 20 in a row to finish it. It’s disappointing; we feel like we gave the game away offensively. We had a lot of turnovers and I played poorly. Defense played well enough for us to win and we should have come out with a win.”
It’s not very often that you walk in here and say you didn’t play well enough for your team to win …
“Yes, it’s disappointing. I prepared to play well this week against a very good defense; they are very well coached. They had a good plan for us and knocked a lot of balls down. We ran the ball effectively but we weren’t throwing it as well as were the first couple of weeks, and that’s disappointing because we had some chances.”
How challenging is it to go in with a game plan and then you lose pieces? Finley, Starks …
“Yes, it’s tough to win a football game with two running backs. That limited our personnel groups and when James (Starks) went down, than Jonathan (Franklin) got hurt in the game and Jermichael (Finley) went down. But we had guys step up, Jonathan played a real good game for us, had some good runs, but we have to clean some things up. We turned the ball over way too many times to win.”
What happened on the two interceptions?
“I couldn’t tell on the first one if James (Jones) actually saw me, I was throwing to a spot that I thought he would be at. On the second one, I felt good about the ball, but Leon (Hall) made a good play.”
You appeared more frustrated than usual today. How would you describe your frustration?
“Yeah, I was frustrated; I didn’t play very well. I am competitive and I expect to play well every week and this week it didn’t happen and that’s frustrating. We couldn’t convert; we got in a rhythm in the third quarter and it looked like we were going to blow it open, but we turned the ball over twice. Then we turned the ball over again in the fourth quarter, and that’s why we lost.”
What happens when you and your coach get into a disagreement? How do you get past it for the day?
“We are both passionate about the game and competitive. We want to win very badly. I went over and talked to him after that and we got on the same page. We needed to talk, we did and we moved on.”
Was that discussion about a play call?
“I am going to leave that between Mike and I. We are both competitive and I think we were both frustrated all day that we couldn’t have some success in the red zone. We kicked away too many field goals and had too many turnovers.”
Can you take us through the sequence where you think Randall (Cobb) has the first down on third down and then the challenge and then all hell breaks loose?
“It was frustrating, I thought he had it. It would have been a big first down for us with about four and a half to go I think. We didn’t get it. We had a good play call on fourth and short and after I handed the ball off, I saw it come out. I should have made the tackle. After that they picked it up and scored.”
How has Randall Cobb come along in his year plus in the league?
“He is a great player and he will continue to get better the more reps he gets. He is tough to guard, he is tough athletic and he knows the game very well; has excellent second reactions. He is going to a big time player for this team for a long time.”
You were part of the playoff game at Arizona that was really crazy. Would you say this game was like that?
“That one was a lot more fun. We scored a lot of points and moved the ball well. This one, we scored a lot of points, but we didn’t move the ball very well for the most part. The defense played excellent today, they put us in a great position to put the game away on multiple occasions. Especially early in the game, converting those drives into touchdowns instead of field goals. One drive we got no points on after a sack and it’s disappointing. We will work on things; its only week three. But you have to win these types of games when you are coming down stretch and trying to make it into the playoffs.”
They batted down three balls on the last series. Were they doing anything different?
“I think they were looking to bat it down a little more, knowing we were going to be looking for some quick passes. They are smart defensive ends, they’ve played some years in this league. They are both 6-6 plus. We tried some different things, cutting them on some play, split the line at times. But they are good players.”
How did you come out of this physically? It looked like Michael Johnson got your knee one time. Did you make amends afterwards?
“Yeah, we made amends. He said he didn’t mean anything by it and I trust him. We have a week off and we have to get some guys healthy. We have to get Morgan (Burnett) back, John (Kuhn) if we can, Jermichael (Finley) hopefully he will be back. And James (Starks) and Eddie (Lacy), hopefully they will be back. We have some injuries, we need to get guys back and see what we can do at full strength.”
When the schedule came out and you saw you had a week four bye, you probably weren’t real happy. Has your opinion changed after what happened here?
“It is what it is. We are 1-2 right now.”
RB JOHNATHAN FRANKLIN
How frustrating was not being able to score on the final drive?
“It’s what we love. We’ve got to pass the ball, so it makes it tough to score when they knock down passes.”
Talk about the “next man up” mentality of the running backs corps.. …
“We’ve got some great offensive linemen. I’ve got to praise God and give the guys up front credit.”
Is it too easy to say that this was a learning experience?
“It’s life. You, me, everyone, we’re always learning. You’ve got to understand why certain things happen, then go from there. We’ve got a long season. Hopefully, I’ll be blessed with another opportunity. I’ve got to continue to work to and continue to praise in God.”
WR JAMES JONES
How tough was communication on offense early in the game?
“It wasn’t bad at all.”
Were you surprised that Aaron Rodgers threw two interceptions today?
“The first interception was my fault. Hands down. I stopped on the route. I can never do that. I put the quarterback in a bad situation right there, giving him mixed reads. That was completely all me. I had a slant route. I’ve got to cross the defender’s face. I can’t do that (stop) to the quarterback. That was my fault. Overall, we did not play well on offense. We’ve got to find a way to get it done and help our defense. Our defense played well.”
Did you see anything strange on that play?
“No. I didn’t see anything strange. In the heat of the moment, you make mistakes sometimes. That was one of my mistakes. I didn’t cross the DB’s face. (Rodgers) was looking for me and threw it. The defender had cut me off and intercepted the ball.”
Touch on the running game that had James Starks rush for 55 and Johnathan Franklin gain 103 yards …
“We were running it well. Starks came in running it well; Franklin came in and made his mark with some big runs. We’re running it well. The running game got us in that rhythm early in the second half on some drives to score some points. We’ve got to continue to push it and run the ball a little bit more. Hopefully, it opens up the passing game.”
What held the Packers back in the red zone today?
“They’ve got a pretty good defense. You’ve got to take your hat off to them. They’ve got some good players over there. They’ve got a good defense. Obviously, we didn’t execute the way we wanted to, but you’ve got to give credit to them. They made some plays today. We weren’t out there on air playing against our selves.”
DT B.J. RAJI
Comment about today’s game …
“The first drive, give them credit. They had some different schemes for us and had some success. Obviously, if we did a better job after the fumble on the kickoff return and held them to three (points). They scored really easily at first. We’ve got to take blame for that. I was proud of how we came back in the first half and forced four turnovers, with the touchdown. Obviously, against a good team, we didn’t play well enough in the second half.”
LB CLAY MATTHEWS
Are you happy that the defense was able to force so many turnovers?
“Obviously, our goal is to force turnovers. We made some TFLs and lots of sacks. But, we gave up 34 points. They made some freak plays. We didn’t make the plays when we needed to and that cost us.”
How wild was this game?
“Crazy. It was wild with regard to the calls and the plays that happened. Ultimately, there were two very good, playoff-caliber teams out there today. They made more plays than us to win the ball game. That’s kind of where we are right now.”
Tags: #GBvsCIN, cincinnati bengals, quotes
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 55 Comments »
GREEN BAY PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(opening statement) “I have five injuries to report. Casey Hayward, hamstring, DuJuan Harris, knee injury, Morgan Burnett, hamstring, Brad Jones, hamstring, and Jarvis Reed, ankle. With that, I’ll take your questions.”
(on Vince Young’s scrambling ability) “Vince Young, the dimension of running, that’s something that we really wanted to see. I think you’re just seeing Vince get more and more comfortable of what I’ve asked of him. Particularly, for as much as man to man we saw tonight, he was very instinctive and made big plays. I thought he did very well on his first drive. It was very unfortunate with the high snap on second down on his second drive. I think Vince is definitely one of the players that took advantage of his opportunities tonight.”
(on Graham Harrell’s performance) “Graham, frankly, there is some video that we really need to look at. I’d like to see more. He had some tough breaks there with the penalties, but the rhythm of the offense and some of the things mechanically, I would have liked to have seen us be more sharp. We played primarily against an eight-man front, and we didn’t do a very good job handling that.”
(on if he is giving his starters enough time to get ready for the season) “We have a process. Frankly, part of my message to the team is we’re going to trust the process. I feel very good about the process. You can’t sometimes have it both ways. We try, we want to win the game. We wanted to win tonight, especially at home, but there was more information that was needed so that’s what we kind of juggled. Going back, not to be redundant, I thought it was very important for a number of our players to play early. I was very pleased with a lot of production that we had on defense, especially going against Russell Wilson and their offense. We’ll see what the video says in the morning and we’ll go from there.”
(on his gut feeling of where his offense is at this point) “Well, it’s part of the game. It’s part of developing your football team. I’m sure everybody goes about it differently. I’m not really interested in how other people are doing it in this new structure. We have a talented personnel department, we have a talented coaching staff, and we’re trusting the process that we’ve laid down for our players. It’s about one thing; creating opportunities for your football team, creating opportunities for your football team to grow. We grew in some ways, in some ways we did not. With that, we’ve got a week to get ready for Kansas City. It’s a six-day week, we have to get in here, get it going and get our work done. Obviously, we have a tough weekend ahead of us, we’ve got to get down to 75. This is the time of year head coaches and general managers don’t look forward to. You spend a lot of time with these men, from April 15th on, and obviously we’ll have to get down to 75 here throughout the weekend.”
PACKERS QB AARON RODGERS:
(on if he knew how long he would play tonight) “I knew I was going to be in for the first quarter. We had a seven-and-a-half minute drive, so Mike (McCarthy) made the decision one drive and out.”
(on if he feels like he’s gotten enough work this preseason) “I do. I’ve played a lot of football. I’ll make sure my conditioning is where it needs to be for the first game and we’ll be fine.”
(on any concern about the lack of reps with Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson) “We’ve had issues like that in the past with Jermichael (Finley) being out, Greg (Jennings) being out. You just have to get your work in in practice when those guys come back. Hopefully we get Jordy back next week to get some work in (and) Randall the same. In regards to if they play or not, it would be good to get some reps with them, but we’ve played a lot of football together. Jordy and I and had a lot of success, and Randall last year obviously had a lot of success. We’re talking every day and they’re in the meetings. It’s a matter of making sure we’re on the same page.”
(on Vince Young’s performance) “Vince did a good job. That’s his game right there, being able to make plays when the pocket breaks down or when they’re rushing four and playing a lot of man coverage with nobody with vision to the football. Vince obviously is still a good athlete and he was able to get us down there and get it in the end zone.”
(on where Vince Young is in terms of picking up the system) “I think he’s improving. This is a wordy system and a difficult system to pick up. He obviously came in after seven installs have been put in already so he was behind, but he’s been picking it up and showing improvements.”
(on if the team starts thinking about the regular-season opener now) “I think right now we’re going to think about this roster and this is the last night this group of guys is going to be together. It’s a tough day for some of our guys (to) go down to 75. A lot of guys have put a lot of effort into this. Obviously next week will be about Kansas City and getting guys more opportunities. At the same time you start looking at your first (regular-season) opponent and focusing on the things we need to do to get ready for that.”
(on how much he talks to the other QBs during the game) “We look at the pictures on the sideline and I help out if I see anything, but they’re very well-coached. (Quarterbacks coach) Ben’s (McAdoo) up in the box, obviously (offensive coordinator) Tom (Clements) down on the sidelines and we go through the stuff and talk about any adjustments they might have made or things to look for next time in that situation.”
(on how he feels about the offensive line’s chemistry with limited game reps) “I’m not worried about that. I think it’s good for David (Bakhtiari) to get that many reps. I think he did a pretty good job out there. We’ll watch the film, but it helps that we’ve been very solid with T.J. (Lang), Evan (Dietrich-Smith) and Josh (Sitton). We just need to figure out who those two tackles are going to be and get some consistency out of them and keep finding ways to get the ball to 88 (Finley).”
PACKERS TIGHT END JERMICHAEL FINLEY:
(on his personal performance) “I came out feeling fresh. (Aaron Rodgers) and I had a talk earlier in the day about me touching the ball early. When a guy like that comes up to you and tells you you’re going to get the ball early, you get jittery.”
(on if he’s worried about the first-team offense only getting limited opportunities) “Not at all. I know when the games count we’re going to get six (points) on the board for sure and practice makes perfect. We get tons of reps in practice and I think that’s enough.”
(on quarterback Vince Young’s performance) “That’s my Texas boy so I’m not going to say anything bad about him, but I thought he looked great tonight. He got his feet wet and I can’t wait to see what he does next week.”
PACKERS LINEBACKER CLAY MATTHEWS:
(on containing Seahawks QB Russell Wilson) “I’m real excited about that. I thought we did a great job keeping the quarterback contained. Obviously he possesses their greatest playmaking ability by extending the pocket and extending the play. We did a good job. He’s going to make his plays, but for the most part we got after him, got our hands on him and got him down.”
(on cornerback Casey Hayward’s interception) “It’s good to see. Obviously he’s continuing his playmaking ability from last year when he had six or seven interceptions, so it’s good to have him back out there. It’s good to see what he’s capable of and we’re going to need it this year.”
(on the defense’s performance this preseason) “I think we’re continuing to improve. I think we played very well up front the first two games, up front on first and second down. Now it’s about getting those third-down plays. Aside from the first drive (tonight), which we’ll take a look at and improve upon, I thought we did a good job.”
PACKERS QUARTERBACK VINCE YOUNG:
(on his personal performance) “I felt all right. It’s still a learning process right now. I’m getting there – more reps, more practice, a lot of film work, studying … picking Aaron (Rodgers), Graham (Harrell) and BJ’s (Coleman) heads is definitely helping me out a lot.”
(on the offensive’s performance when he was in the game) “The biggest key that Coach McCarthy was telling us as a second team and a third team was to get a better tempo, get guys out of the huddle. I really feel like the offensive line did a great job. The receivers made some big catches. Things like that. I just really felt like we accomplished some things that Coach wanted us to do as a second and third unit, and I just want to continue to keep that work up.”
(on making plays with his feet) “I just really feel like the things that the defense did gave me opportunities to use my legs a little bit. Like I said earlier, it still goes back to the offensive line making some key blocks, opening up the window, as well as our receivers making some key catches.”
(on leading a touchdown drive) “It’s not really about me. I just felt like everybody as a team, as an offense took care of their responsibilities on that play and we got the touchdown out of the drive, so that’s pretty good. The next drive we could have done a little bit better, so that’s something we can work on.”
Tags: #SEAvsGB, quotes, seattle seahawks
Posted in Packers.com Blog | 14 Comments »
Green Bay Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy
“(TE) Matthew Mulligan had an arm injury and did not return. That is all I have to report at this time.”
(On the game)
“As far as an overview of the game, I thought that the football team took a step forward tonight. We obviously still have a lot to work on. I thought the offense moved the football. We need to focus on getting the ball in the end zone this week. We took care of the football, we had the one fumble on the ground during the fourth quarter but it was reversed. Defensively, I felt good about our defense, particularly on the third downs and their ability to keep them out of the end zone. On special teams we were able to get a number of kicks for both Mason (Crosby) and Giorgio (Tavecchio) so that we can continue that evaluation. I feel like the productivity and the opportunity on a number of different fronts gives us the chance to evaluate and move into preseason week number three. Overall, I think like I said to start off, we took a step forward but we still have a lot of work to do.”
(On the play and interception of DT Johnny Jolly)
“You go back to his play in college and when he played in the earlier years for us, he is a very instinctive football player. I don’t know the specific statistics of how many batted balls he has had in his career. With his hand-eye coordination, for him to make a play like that in that particular defense, he is the perfect guy for a role like that. It was obviously a big play to keep them out of the end zone. It speaks a lot to Johnny Jolly’s case to make our football team. When I talk about the team taking a step forward, I think Johnny taking a step. We are starting to see the player that was here a few years back. I am very happy for his individual success here tonight.”
(On the play of RB Eddie Lacy)
“If you go back to his college film and his ability to not waste any steps, that is something that I have always looked for in a runner, particularly a good north and south and with his body type. We wanted to give him some opportunities. We visited with him before the game. I wanted to make sure that he was all the way back from his injury and I think that was evident tonight. He clearly took advantage of his opportunities.”
(On the play of QB B.J. Coleman)
“B.J. did a good job. He had a couple of plays that he wished he could get back, but I thought that he saw pressure from their defense and did a couple of things at the line of scrimmage. He needs to settle down still a little bit more, but he improved today.”
(On watching the kickers in a live game time situation)
“It is a kicking competition and it is important for both of them to improve off of film. The opportunity did not present itself last week and frankly I think that it was important to get them the opportunity. I think the way the game was played will reflect that. We will continue to let those guys battle it out. We will try to kick to them as much as we can on the six-day week as we lead up to Seattle.”
(On the #2 quarterback selection and evaluations)
“You can say that at the quarterback position, on the cornerback position, you can say that at the right tackle position. This is the time that the individual that the guy who will be in that position to jump forward. This what usually happens in the second or third preseason week.”
(On QB Graham Harrell)
“I thought he was better this week than he was last week, but I thought that his ability on some things that we had really been stressing with Graham – his play out of the pocket, his transition from in-pocket to the out of pocket phase and I thought he did a good job.
(On the play of QB Aaron Rodgers)
“I thought that Aaron was very sharp. I took the ball out of his hands in a couple of situation that I wouldn’t do on a normal Sunday. I thought he was sharp and kept us in key plays.”
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers
(On his performance tonight)
“It was okay. It was frustrating not getting in the end zone. But, I’m going to highlight a couple of guys I thought that played really well. On our side of the ball, Jermichael (Finley) was awesome. He’s had a great spring, summer and camp and I’m excited about his progress moving forward and the role he’s going to play in our offense. We need to find more ways to get him the ball, Eddie Lacey as well. Eddie was in there working with the first group. He did a nice job being on the same page as a rookie and ran the ball really well.”
(On Eddie Lacy being a quality running back)
“I think we’ve had quality running backs here in the past. It’s just a matter of doing a better job of scheme that fits our personnel and the game up front and making the most of the athleticism we have with those guys. And then we have a back that has very good patience in Eddie. But there are six guys who have run the ball really well in camp. I think it’s a fun competition to watch and we’ll see what happens moving forward, but Eddie had a good night.”
(On his other observations tonight)
“I like our team. We’re a young team with a lot of energy that’s exciting to see the guys and their personality. I felt there was more life on the sideline tonight. We actually scored some points tonight and the defense was playing great. One moment that sticks out more than any tonight was Johnny Jolly having an interception. I was jumping up and down running down the sidelines and I know James Jones was doing the same thing. There were probably 25 guys on the field congratulating him and that just says a lot about his presence, his personality, the way the guys feel about him and how happy were are to have him back and he played great tonight.”
Packers RB Eddie Lacy
(On his performance tonight)
“I felt good tonight. It was my first night out there with the number one offense in a real live situation and I felt as though I did a good job tonight.”
(On the Green Bay offense)
“We came out and played a lot more physical in this game. We didn’t like the way things went in the last game and we wanted to come out and be different and take a step in the right direction and we did that tonight.”
(On getting an opportunity to play)
“I was just happy to be out there and to be a part of what we’re building here this season. I did make a couple of great runs, but the offensive line did a great job and I made good reads. But I’m just out here to contribute and the coaches are going to play who they want to play.”
(On his comfort level playing tonight)
“I was nervous at first, but after the first hit I got a lot more comfortable and then just let the game come to me.”
(On if he brings something extra to the Green Bay offense)
“I’ll watch it on tape and see how things went out there. But for me I thought I did a great job and I hope to continue to do the same thing.”
Packers LB Clay Matthews
(On his thoughts regarding the team’s performance)
“I definitely think we took a step in the right direction. We aim to win every game around here. Obviously, preseason is a little different, but with that being said, we came out (last week) and defensively, we gave up a few too many points and had a letdown. But tonight, I thought we took a step in the right direction with the victory. We had a goal-line stand, so I think we did some things out there. We definitely took a step in the right direction.”
(On coming up with key stops in the red zone)
“Last week, we didn’t do so well in certain situations, but this week we gave up a deep ball down to the five-yard line and we were able to keep them out so we feel good about that. We improved on the areas from last week where we had some letdowns, so that’s what’s important right now. We have two more games, obviously. The Week 3 matchup is our biggest as far as seeing where your team is at, so we’ll see. I know I continue to say it, but we took a step in the right direction.”
(On his thoughts on the offense’s performance)
“We saw that last week. Aaron (Rodgers) played limited snaps last week and I know we had the ball at the goal line and we were unable to punch it in. It’s unfortunate, but ultimately they looked good. They looked real good. We know with Aaron in charge it’s going to be for defenses to not allow them to put points on the board, so anytime you’ve got him back there with the offense we have, it should be a good day for us.”
Packers TE Jermichael Finley
(On how it felt to have so many balls coming his way today)
“It felt good. It comes out from the chemistry that I have with ‘12’ (QB Aaron Rodgers). It’s started off pretty good.”
(On how he can maintain that level of chemistry with Rodgers)
“Catch the ball and run your routes.”
(On if it was part of the game plan to funnel the ball to Finley today)
“No. That’s just how it’s been going lately and I guess everything’s coming ten-fold.”
(On how much of his success is due to an increased focus on maintaining a vision of the whole field)
“I would say all of it. You’ve got to look out and see what you’ve got and ‘12’ has put it on me the last couple weekends, so we got hot.”
(On if yards after the catch is a focus for him this year)
“Yeah, that’s one of my focuses. I mean, that’s how I want to be. I want to catch it and do something after it, so I’ve been working on that, and it’s coming. It’s all coming into place, so we’ll see what we’ve got for the next two preseason games.”
(On his thoughts on where the offense is after being able to move the ball consistently tonight)
“I think that’s one aspect of our game on the offensive side that we need to do, which is finish. We need to be able to put points on the board and keep driving the ball like we are, but when we get in the red zone, we need to make it count.”
Packers LB A.J. Hawk
(On where the Packers are as a defensive unit right now)
“We’re definitely not where we want to be, but going from last week to this week, we improved a bit. It was good to have a lot of different situations tonight. We got down there on the goal line and had a couple of good goal line stands. We were happy to get off the field there and stop them on fourth down. Overall, we would have loved the shutout, but it’s tough to get shutouts in the NFL, we know that much. We’re a work in progress, for sure.”
(On if it’s difficult to gauge a unit’s progress in preseason games)
“A little bit, but when you’ve been around and you judge your preseason, it’s still football. That’s the great thing about football. This isn’t like other sports. You can’t go out there like a preseason basketball game and just loaf around the field. If you’re on the field, you’re playing hard. Everybody is, so I think you get a good gauge of where you’re at.”
Tags: #GBvsSTL, quotes, st. louis rams
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PACKERS TOP VIKINGS TO MOVE INTO A TIE FOR FIRST PLACE IN THE NFC NORTH
– Green Bay beat Minnesota, 23-14, today at Lambeau Field to improve to 8-4 on the season. With Chicago’s loss to Seattle on Sunday afternoon, the Packers and Bears are tied for first place in the NFC North, two games ahead of the Vikings (6-6).
– With the victory on Sunday, the Packers extended their franchise-record divisional winning streak to 10 games.
– Green Bay has won five consecutive games against the Vikings, the longest streak vs. Minnesota since a five-game one from 2006-08.
– The Packers have won 18 of their last 19 regular-season games (.947) at Lambeau Field and 24 of their last 26 contests (.923) at home.
– Green Bay will stay home for another NFC North contest when it hosts the Detroit Lions next Sunday night at Lambeau Field in a nationally televised game (7:20 p.m. CST).
OTHER POST-GAME NOTES:
- Today’s paid attendance was 70,567. It was the 308th consecutive sellout (291 regular season, 17 playoffs) at Lambeau Field.
– QB Aaron Rodgers threw a TD pass in his 35th consecutive regular-season game at home, further extending his franchise record. It is the longest in the NFL since Dolphins QB Dan Marino’s 39-game streak from 1983-88.
– Rodgers went over the 3,000-yard passing mark for the season, his fifth straight 3,000-yard season (2008-12).
– S Morgan Burnett matched his single-game career high (at Chicago, Sept. 25, 2011) with two interceptions.
– C Jeff Saturday made his 200th career NFL start.
– P Tim Masthay placed his 27th punt inside the 20 this season, the third most in a season in franchise history (since 1976) behind only Sean Landeta (30 in 1998) and Craig Hentrich (28 in 1996).
– With a plus-one turnover ratio, the Packers have now won the takeaway battle or come out even in 27 of their last 30 regular-season games.
– Green Bay’s 38:30 time of possession was the team’s top mark since a 40:48 time of possession at New England on Dec. 19, 2010.
GREEN BAY PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(opening statement) “Good victory for the Green Bay Packers today. Good divisional win. It’s always tough to play the Vikings. I was very, very pleased with the way our team started the game. I think that tilts toward our preparation when we come out with the fast start. In the second quarter we had some things go against us. Then the start of the second half, with the poor start, the rush defense wasn’t where it needed to be. I thought Morgan Burnett’s interception in the third quarter in the end zone was probably the key play of the game. It shifted the momentum. I felt that our team was able to overcome adversity and played very well in the second half. Offensively, we maintained balance, which we needed to. We overcame the injuries to T.J. Lang and Jordy Nelson. Defensively, we played tough; the tackling was not where it needed to be. Adrian Peterson is an outstanding football player and we respect him. Maybe we respected him too much. We had too many missed tackles there. I thought our special teams were solid.”
(on Don Barclay’s performance) “I thought Don did a good job. Actually, I thought the confidence in the play calling reflected that. When he first went into the game, I tried to take care of him and play it smart. Frankly, after halftime we just really played a basic, clean football game. I thought our players did a heck of a job. It was nothing unusual. We took a couple shot plays, but it just came down to being balanced with the run and pass, similar to the way they were playing us on defense. We saw a little bit more quarter coverage than we probably anticipated, but I thought Don gave us an opportunity to keep rolling by allowing us to play both run and pass. I was pleased from what I saw.”
(on being able to run off time in the third quarter after Morgan Burnett’s interception) “We stuck to our plan and tried to stay in favorable down and distances. We know what it looks like when we’re stuck in third-and-11 on 47 percent of our third downs like we were last week. That’s not the formula for success. The focus was to play in favorable down and distances. I thought we were able to do that today.”
(on if he feels like he’s getting into a good running back situation with Starks and Green) “I liked the combination of running backs today and I loved what James Starks did. I thought he stepped up. I thought Alex ran well. I thought John Kuhn played tough like he always does. But I thought James was a little cut above today. That’s why I went with him in the fourth quarter. I like what I see from our backs.”
(on Morgan Burnett’s interception in the third quarter) “Like I said in my opening statement, I thought Morgan Burnett’s interception in the end zone was the biggest play of the game. I thought our whole sideline turned after that. Halftime was not the best halftime that I have been a part of. Our guys were a little bit up and down when we came in. We just stuck to the adjustments and he gave us the boost. Morgan’s playing very well. He’s had big plays for us throughout the season. He’s showing good veteran leadership back there.”
PACKERS QUARTERBACK AARON RODGERS:
(on how the offensive line played after Lang’s injury) “I thought they did a good job. You’ve got to give Donny (Barclay) a lot of credit. Don Barclay stepped in, got his opportunity and made the most of it. I’m very proud of him. He’s a good kid, he’s really worked hard in training camp and put himself in position to not only make the team but be a contributor. We put him out there on different personnel packages and (we’re) excited for his opportunity. He was going up against a tough rusher today in Brian (Robison) and he did a good job.”
(on the offensive production in the second half) “Yeah I thought we got into a good rhythm there. We ran the ball more effectively than we have all season, a good combination of James Starks and Alex Green running the football, doing a nice job. I’m not sure what the final numbers were, but I think we had around 150-yards rushing, which probably hasn’t happened here in a while. That gave us some good balance.”
(on the 11-minute scoring drive) “We haven’t had one of those in a while. We haven’t been able to control the clock like that and it says a lot about the toughness of those guys. It wasn’t the prettiest drive. We made the most of our third-down opportunities.”
(on the Bears loss) “It puts us back in first (place in the division). I can’t say there’s many Seahawk fans in the locker room, but we appreciate the help.”
(on the James Jones TD catch) “It reminded me of a catch, what was it, Jacksonville or Arizona, one of the two – he had a similar catch where he went up over the guy and made the play. He’s made the most of his opportunities this year. I think that’s nine touchdowns for him. If not for a phantom call there, he probably would have had another one on the second drive, but James did a good job. (I was) disappointed last week not getting him any opportunities. Today he didn’t have, again, a ton of opportunities, but he made the most of them.”
(on the double-pass interception) “I was just trying to punt it in there, pin them back pretty good. I wanted to catch it first, that was important. And then as I was making the catch, I saw (Everson) Griffen coming my way. I think Josh (Sitton) made a nice block and gave me some room, and I just tried to put it out. I kind of ran out of arm a little bit there.”
(on the Vikings’ defensive strategy being similar to the Giants’ last week) “They played us very soft. Actually they mixed in some one-high in the first half and brought a couple pressures, but for the most part outside it was softer defenses and we did a good job running the ball. We blocked them up, the backs made the right cuts and put us in more manageable third down situations. We didn’t convert them every time, but we didn’t have as many third-and-11 plusses like we did last week.”
(on how important this division win was) “It was important. Everything is right in front of us, regardless of the Bears outcome today. We still have the Bears at Chicago and the division very well could come down to that meeting.”
(on if they compensated on offense for the line injuries) “Not really. We had a plan coming in we wanted to give those guys help regardless if it was T.J. (Lang). T.J., Marshall (Newhouse) and when Donny (Barclay) came in we wanted to help Donny out obviously, but it would have been the same plan if T.J. had not gotten hurt. Give Don a lot of credit. He did a good job, he grew up tonight and I’m really proud of him. He really does things the right way and works hard.”
(on having WR Greg Jennings back) “I think now, at this moment, he’s probably going to take Jordy’s (Nelson) reps. I’m not sure what Jordy’s situation is going to be, but I would guess that Greg would step kind of seamlessly back into that slot. Talking about the slot, Randall’s (Cobb) going to stay in the slot I would assume, and Greg will be outside for the most part. It’s nice to have him back. He’s a big-time player. He can make catches down the field. There were a couple plays where we were on the same page today, which is fun to get him back out there and still have the same feel that we had previous to the injury. He’s a big-time player, we’ve got to get him more opportunities.”
(on if this a gut-check type of game) “I think it definitely was a gut-check for us. At halftime, I think the thing you can say about our guys, there was no panic. Our defense shut them out in the second half, which ultimately gave us the win, but there was no panic on the offensive side.”
(on what the mood of the locker room was at halftime) “I thought it was a no-panic locker room. He (Coach McCarthy) maybe wanted some more yelling and screaming, but we have been typically in the last couple years not a big rah-rah team. We don’t need a lot of rah-rah speeches. Every team is different. In 2010, Charles (Woodson) was giving us a speech every week. This team is a different team, different makeup. I think there’s some leadership in the room. Guys understand situations and the other guys carry their load.”
PACKERS SAFETY MORGAN BURNETT:
(on his second interception) “It was a good defensive call. I trusted my technique. That put me in a position to make the play and coach always tells me to just trust your instincts. On that play, I just let my instincts take over and that’s what happened. I undercut the ball and came away with the pick.”
(on the team’s ability to create turnovers today) “Any time you can get a turnover and help your offense out, steal them an extra possession – that really helps out a lot. We did a great job of getting turnovers, and the offense did a great job of protecting the ball, so this game, we won the turnover battle. Any time you win the turnover battle, your chance of winning is pretty high.”
(on limiting the Vikings’ passing game) “Everyone stuck to their technique. Everyone communicated very well. Everyone did their job and no one got outside of their element. Everyone trusted that someone was there to help them in certain defenses. We all pulled together.”
PACKERS KICKER MASON CROSBY:
(on his confidence today) “I’m great. This team, we find ways to win. Even though my kicks might not all go through, and other things might happen on the field, we are finding ways to win and that’s what I did today. I found a way to bounce back after a miss right there at the end of the half and make some kicks that I needed to in the second half.”
(on his mindset following the miss before halftime) “We understand what needs to be done. I’ve got to go out there and make them happen – that’s what’s expected. As soon as I get back out in the second half I regroup and as soon as the ball leaves my foot, I move on to the next one.”
PACKERS LINEBACKER A.J. HAWK:
(on S Morgan Burnett’s interception in the end zone) “You can’t affect the game in a more positive way than picking them off in the end zone when they’re knocking on the door. That was huge. It took the momentum from them and we kind of ran with it after that.”
(on getting a key division win) “It’s good. We have a tough division. Every game is going to be like this. I think the NFC North is a fun division to be in as a linebacker. Every game is super physical, and I don’t think there are going to be many blowouts in the North.”
(on the offense’s 11-minute drive in the fourth quarter) “It was awesome. It was really fun to watch actually. I stand up and watch our offense all the time when they’re on the field. It was something special to see. Our offense is one of the best for a reason, and that drive was just huge and came at a big time for us.”
PACKERS WIDE RECEIVER GREG JENNINGS:
(on being back on the field following the injury) “It’s great to be back – great to be out there on the field and actually take some hits, run some routes, get winded a little bit and get dirty. It really felt good today.”
(on the 11-minute scoring drive in the fourth quarter) “That’s what it’s all about – making sure we can sustain drives, move the chains and keep our defense off the field. They’ve got a heck of a running back over there on the other side of the ball and it’s hard to contain that guy. We understand that, so the best way to contain him is to keep him off the field. It’s been a while since we’ve had a drive like that. That was pretty impressive. To get the first downs that we were able to get on third down, key conversions… I know (WR coach Edgar Bennett) will be excited about that since he’s our third-down guy. Overall, as an offensive unit, that drive was outstanding.”
(on the production from the Packers’ running game) “It keeps teams honest. We talk about who is the key to beating the cover two – it’s the run game. If you’re not running the ball well teams are going to be able to sit back and just put six in the box and that’s it.”
(on getting a key division win) “Division games are huge. We’ve got another one next week. Obviously we’re going to take this one and let it marinate a little bit. It’s a big win for us coming off that loss last week. We’re moving forward. Another division opponent is coming in next week in Detroit. They’re not going to take it easy on us, and we’re not going to take it easy on them.”
PACKERS CORNERBACK TRAMON WILLIAMS:
(on facing the Vikings’ running game) “They had a good day on the ground. We knew we had to stop (Adrian Peterson), we knew it was going to be tough, and it was. Obviously when they tried to pass the ball we kind of limited them from doing that. AP got his, no doubt about it, but we got the job done. Going against a back like that, you know explosive plays are going to come some way, somehow, whether it’s breaking tackles, whether it’s him just getting around the edge and going the whole way, he finds a way to get explosive gains. You’ve just got to get a bunch of guys to the ball and in the second half I think we did a better job of that.”
(on his unnecessary roughness call) “You all saw it. I didn’t see it. I just hit the guy. You can tell me better than I can tell you. You tell me what it looked like. I didn’t ask any questions. I know a clean lick when I do it myself.”
(on getting a key division win) “It’s big. Obviously whenever you play a division opponent it’s never easy, no matter how outsiders may see it. That was a good team coming in and we got another win under our belt, and that’s what counts.”
MINNESOTA VIKINGS HEAD COACH LESLIE FRAZIER:
(on the loss) “It was a very disappointing loss. We had some opportunities in this ballgame to put ourselves in a good position, and we came up short. Our guys played extremely hard. Green Bay was better; they beat us. Congratulations to them. It was just a tough loss.”
(on the offense) “We definitely want to improve our passing game. That is something that we will keep working to improve. You want to create a little bit of balance for sure, especially as well as we were running the ball. We need to create balance. We will keep working on that.”
(on the performance of Adrian Peterson) “It was a tremendous effort by Adrian today and our offensive line of opening up holes. I am just extremely proud of his attitude. He wants to win as much as anybody. That is the only accomplishment that he is concerned about. He is disappointed that we didn’t win. The fact that he ran for 210 yards is important, but not as important to him as the fact that we didn’t win this game. That is the beauty of Adrian Peterson; he is the total team guy.”
(on Christian Ponder) “Christian is our quarterback. We are going to do all we can to help him this week to have a good game against Chicago. When you are on the road, you really have to play clean football. It is hard to overcome turnovers on the road. We don’t have that margin of error on our team right now. Hopefully he and the rest of our team will learn that lesson.”
(on Green Bay’s defense) With all the man coverage that they played, we really felt going into the ballgame that we would be able to exploit some of the things that they were doing. We anticipated them playing a lot of single high, but obviously we didn’t take advantage.”
(on the playoff race) “We aren’t out of this thing by any means. We have a lot of veteran players who realize that things change every year, but at that same time they also know that we have the right people. There is no reason to panic.”
VIKINGS QUARTERBACK CHRISTIAN PONDER:
(on his performance) “This one definitely hurts. It is disappointing to go out and throw two interceptions. There were a couple of more plays besides that that I wish I could have back. All I can do is come back to work tomorrow and try to keep getting better. We just have to move on and put this one behind us.”
(on his first interception) “The number one rule as a quarterback is to not throw across your body across the middle of the field, especially when it is late in downs, and that is exactly what I did. I thought it was coming open and maybe I could have thrown a better ball, but I probably shouldn’t have thrown it at all.”
(on his second interception) “It was man coverage and we had it beat. I had to step up; I was a little late on the throw and I left it behind him. It is my job to throw it only where Kyle (Rudolph) can catch it, and I left it behind him. The guy (S Morgan Burnett) made a play.”
VIKINGS DEFENSIVE END JARED ALLEN:
(on the offsides penalties) “Just a lack of concentration on our part. Aaron (Rodgers) did a great job on a couple double-counts and got some of our guys, and that’s totally on us.”
(on the discrepancy of time of possession) “You know our job is to not let them score. I mean we had a four point lead at halftime. I don’t think we were as clean on third down as we would like to be in the second half. That’s what kept us on the field a little longer.”
(on the interceptions in the red zone) “They got two interceptions in the red zone and that negates points for us. Whether those are field goals and we have those six points, that’s a difference at the end of the game. Even if we get field goals, that gives us a shot to win it at the end of the game with two minutes.”
(on any adjustments made by Green Bay in the second half) “It was really only one series. They caught us on a couple tosses when they had a short field. Hats off to them, you know, you don’t really anticipate them calling those plays directly into a stunt. Other than that, they know how to move the chains and we just have to get off the field on third down.”
(on playing all season with a torn labrum) “Hats off to our training staff, I’ve been banged up a lot this year and I haven’t had to miss a practice for it. It probably happened last season, but it hasn’t limited me in anything from practice or anything like that.”
VIKINGS WIRE RECEIVER DEVIN AROMASHODU:
(on the turnovers today) “You can’t turn it over. We had some crucial turnovers in the red zone and we’ve got to bounce back and get it figured out.”
(on getting the receivers more involved in the offense) “We obviously just have to try to throw the ball a little bit more, maybe make a little bit more of our opportunities. But I think we tried to get the receivers involved and it just didn’t work out today.”
VIKINGS WIDE RECEIVER MICHAEL JENKINS:
(on the struggles of the offense) “It’s not just him (QB Christian Ponder). If you look at the interceptions, it could look like it’s his fault, but it’s not. It’s all of us. We never just want to put it on one guy.”
(on if he’s ever been a part of a receiving corp that struggled this much) “No, I mean nine years in, and I’ve never had it like this. We have to find a way to fix it if we want to make the playoffs.”
VIKINGS RUNNING BACK ADRIAN PETERSON:
(on the frustration of the loss today) “It’s very disappointing, especially the way we ran the ball today, and now you can look at it and say it was all for nothing.”
(on his success running the ball today) “I knew how critical this game was, and I just want to come out and put it on the line, and I can say that we did that. Our guys came out and played with passion. We just have to eliminate the turnovers and the penalties, and take advantage of the opportunities we had today.”
(on the momentum switching after the interception) “It hurts, man. You get down there in the red zone, guys are playing good ball, and then we turn it over. But guys responded and kept fighting.”
(on what he said to QB Christian Ponder after the game) “I told him if you keep playing with that passion that you showed today, despite those interceptions, we can win.”
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HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY
(on the game) “Very good victory for our football team tonight. I was very pleased with the way we came out. When came out of the tunnel I thought that the energy was excellent form the first snap to the conclusion of the game. Our goal was obviously to come in here and beat a very good football team, that’s very well coached, talented football team in a great environment here in Houston, so we accomplished that. Unfortunately, we have some injuries, some that look to be potentially serious injuries and we’ll have to recover from that and move on to St. Louis. But I thought our football team had great energy and productivity in the first quarter, and that was really our message at half time – to continue and finish. I thought we took a step as a team tonight and again, beat a very well-coached football team in the Houston Texans.”
(on if playing the undefeated Texans on Sunday night gave his team extra juice) “I don’t think it really mattered what the records were between the two teams tonight. We knew when the season started that this was a very good football team when we had the opportunity to view our schedule. We knew the first few weeks we’d be challenged and just different, and the three road games with this one in the middle on Sunday Night Football. I have a lot of respect for Gary Kubiak and his staff and their team and we knew what they’d put forth coming into the game. We really, truly stayed focused on improving ourselves and that will always be our message and our approach. I was pleased with way we played.”
(on what role the run game played) “It was a factor in getting looks in the no huddle. I thought (QB) Aaron (Rodgers) was spectacular this evening. We pretty much went exclusive no huddle from the starting point of the game. We wanted to press their defense as much as we can because of how much respect we have for those guys. Aaron kept us in plain looks, and that was a big part of our production in the run game. Run blocking I thought did an excellent job, gave us a very good front. I thought (RB) Alex Green played very, very well for his first opportunity tonight to fully have the football. I thought it was a good start in the right direction for our run game.”
(on if ILB Brian Cushing’s absence affected their game plan) “Not really. He’s an outstanding player. I mean, clearly he’s probably the most productive player on a very good defense coming into the game, but schematically, we always do preliminary game plans and then we jump into an exclusive game plan that we start on Mondays. We do have enormous respect for Brian (Cushing).”
(on the defense’s performance) “It was very good defense, very good technique, sound scheme by (Defensive Coordinator) Dom Capers. Ultimately, the credit goes to the players, we have good players. They’re proven players. I’m excited about our defense with the three turnovers this evening. That was one missing part of our 4-0 first success. Offense did a great job taking care of the football against a very good defense that is as good or better than anybody in the League, a very solid defense. Injuries are part of the game and we were overcome today.”
(on QB Aaron Rodgers) “I think that speaks for itself. Aaron was on fire. He did a great job of putting the ball where it needed to be. I thought that probably the biggest play of the game was when he had the opportunity on the first third down of the game, where he came back right after the penalty and took a shot right to (WR) Jordy Nelson. He played through some bumps and bruises there in the second half so clearly one of his better performances as a Packer.”
(on if he thought QB Aaron Rodgers was motivated by questions by critics this past week) “That’s really a question for Aaron. We spend a lot of time during the week, we have a one-on-one every Thursday and go through the whole plan, and that really wasn’t a part of our conversation. I think he does a great job dealing with that responsibility – that when things don’t go well, the quarterback takes a lot of the heat, and when things go well he gets a lot of the praise. He’s played a lot of quarterback in his career and he’s played very well, so he’s jumped over a lot bigger hurdles than this week, that’s for sure.”
(on DE J.J. Watt) “I think J.J. Watt is a dynamic, young player. He has everything you look for in a defensive lineman, and for him to play inside and (DE Antonio) Smith on the other side, I think that’s an excellent pair. That was really our focus of their defense. J.J. has big days ahead of him. Everybody is proud that he’s from Wisconsin, and we’ll root for him starting tomorrow. He’s an excellent player.”
WIDE RECEIVER RANDALL COBB
(on the motivation for tonight’s performance) “We just wanted to make a statement. We know what our team is capable of, last week we didn’t finish as well as we wanted to. This week we wanted to bounce back and show everyone who we really are.”
(on the Packers having multiple playmakers on offense) “We have a lot of players who can do a lot of things with the ball. With all the dynamic players we have we just try to get the ball in their hands and let them do their thing.”
(on QB Aaron Rodgers’ six touchdown passes tonight) “He played phenomenal, that’s the Aaron we know. We made plays for him down the stretch. He fought through a lot of adversity tonight and led us to a big win.”
(on his big kick return after the Texans touchdown) “That was a big return, they drove down the field and scored. We wanted to make sure we got something going the next series, and we got some good blocking in the front and I was able to find a crease on the outside and hit it.”
(on if tonight’s performance is what we can expect from the Packers the rest of the season) “This is the standard. I think that’s why everybody was wondering where we have been. This is the team we know we are capable of being and we just have to continue to do it week in and week out.”
TIGHT END TOM CRABTREE
(on Packers opening touchdown drive) “You always want to have a fast start. That’s something that was lacking in our first couple of weeks. We definitely got off to a fast start today and kept the momentum going the whole game.”
(on if tonight’s game was a statement win) “I think anytime you get a win in this city it’s big. We’re not looking at it as a statement win it’s just kind of hopefully a win that can keep our momentum going.”
(on if the Packers saw any weaknesses in the Texans secondary on tape) “I wouldn’t say that. Every week you try to find weaknesses against whatever defense you’re playing and try to game plan accordingly. It’s a matter of executing, and this week we seemed to execute better than we have in the past.”
(on what this win does for the Packers emotionally after coming off of a tough week) “We won a football game. Tough week is probably your viewpoint, not ours. I thought our team did a very good job staying focused on what it’s really about, and that’s the preparation phase of it, staying in tune, getting ready to play these guys in this environment and we accomplished that. Our goal now is going to St. Louis, we really need to win two games in a row, that’s our focus – stack success for the first time this year.”
LINEBACKER A.J. HAWK
(on the win from the defense’s perspective) “It’ll put us on the right track to turn this thing around. To stop an offense like theirs, you have to stop the run first. Arian Foster is one of the best in the league.”
(on the specifics of stopping the Texans’ run attack) “I think to stop the run what you need is the front seven have to be very unselfish, and that’s what we did tonight – especially with our front four. The defensive linemen stay in their gaps, take up two blockers – it lets everyone flow and run. They have a unique running game with how they like to stretch and stretch. Arian is very patient and finds cutback lanes all the time. We felt like if we could make him bounce and bounce east and west, not let him hit those downhill seems, and I think we did that tonight.”
(on this game being a defining moment for the season) “We hope a victory like that is. We don’t want a loss to be a defining moment for us. Like I said, coming in we were definitely confident. We’ve been confident all year, but we just haven’t put a full game together. I think tonight we finally did.”
GUARD T.J. LANG
(on the offensive line’s plays) “Well we talked about playing more consistent. You know last week, we played quite well in the first half and the second half and then let up four or five sacks. We wanted to rebound up front and we knew this was going to be a tough group to do that against. A lot of great pass rushers on that defense. We understood it was going to be a challenge but when we showed up we expected to give (QB) Aaron (Rodgers) the time to throw the ball and try to make a lot of big things happen. Like I said, it’s fun to play and fun to block that guy when he’s on his game like that.”
(on the running game by RB Alex Green) “A lot of production in the first half with the run game a lot of big plays there. I think it takes a lot of pressure off (QB) Aaron (Rodgers) too when we are able to run the ball. We make their defense respect our run game so they can’t just drop seven guys and sit on our receivers. They have to respect us running the ball. You know, that plays a huge success on offense and we have got to make sure we are staying consistent.”
(on tweeting after the game) “I don’t know. It feels good to get the win especially against an undefeated team at their home. We took a step forward today. We have got to keep doing everything we can to stay consistent and keep moving forward.”
WIDE RECEIVER JAMES JONES
(on the overall offensive performance) “Offensively, I feel like we came out fast like we wanted to do. We put some pressure on them by scoring points early. We were able to throw the ball down the field so that was good. It was a good test for us and luckily we put up some decent points.”
(on QB Aaron Rodgers performance) “I think he was in the zone tonight. He was out of the pocket making plays with his legs, sitting in the pocket making great throws. I think we as receivers ran some pretty good routes to compliment his great performance.”
(on WR Jordy Nelson’s performance) “Jordy was a monster tonight; he caught three touchdowns so he was trying to catch up to me. The Texans came out in press-man and challenged him but he made some great plays. ”
LINEBACKER CLAY MATTHEWS
(on the defensive performance of Packers) “I think it spoke for itself. I don’t know how many points we gave up. We gave up seven on a drive where I had an offsides as well as a pass interference. Take that away and we had a pretty good day. We held them under 50 yards rushing until that last run, we got a couple of key interceptions, got after the quarterback a little bit and that’s what we wanted to do coming in.”
(on why the defense was able to put pressure on the Texans offense) “I think the gameplan overall to stop the run, teams haven’t had success against this team, so we were able to do that along with bring (defensive coordinator) Dom’s (Capers) blitzes and guys like myself off the edge seemed to get a lot of the pressure.”
(on if this was a statement win) “It’s a win and that’s what we need. Right now we’re a little up and down, so hopefully we can maintain this level of play that we have. It seems at times we play with a kind of unison between defense, offense and special teams. There are things to correct. We’re 3-3. That’s the reality of it and hopefully we can stack some success now.”
(on the league fining players for hits and his statement on Houston Texans linebacker Brian Cushing’s injury) “I definitely think there’s a double standard in this league when it comes to fineable offenses that comes for defensive players. A great example is (Green Bay Packers linebacker) Nick Perry got fined $15,000 for a hit on (Indianapolis Colts QB) Andrew Luck, which looked rather legal to me but I don’t make the rules and that hit on Cushing was $10,000. Proof is in the pudding. Ultimately as a defender you like to see the league take care of not only the offense but the defense when so much onus is put on certain individuals rather than the entire body of the game. I got a great response from defenders around the league. The NFL has to listen to us. Someone had to say something. That was just the straw that broke the camel’s back and hopefully something does change. I’m not complaining or to look for sympathy, but we all like to be protected by the same rules.”
WIDE RECEIVER JORDY NELSON
(on getting the first touchdown of the game) “That was big to get back onto the field and get that touchdown to start us off. We wanted to start fast. This game, and I don’t know if this still counts, but I think that might be the first time that we scored on our opening possession. It was big and it got us going.”
(on the play of QB Aaron Rodgers today) “He’s great. He came out and played well. I know he got banged up a little bit, but not too much. It’s just good to see – we know what we can do when we’re all doing the right thing. We haven’t put a complete game together yet this year, and we came really close tonight. It’s fun to watch, it’s fun to be a part of. Everyone was just doing their part and making plays.”
(on if he needed a game like this to get going for himself) “I’m fine. Obviously you’ll take it. You want to do what you’re supposed to do to help the team win. And when your number gets called, you have to make the play. That’s all there is that happened today. It’s no different. In our room all we do is preach to make the most of your opportunities, and I think we did that tonight.”
(on getting off to a fast start) “Yeah, we need to. Like I said, I don’t think we had scored on our opening possession all year. So we wanted to get going. Especially when you’re on the road – try to help to take the crowd out of it. We were able to do that and get it into the end zone early and often and get in a nice rhythm.”
(on the team firing on all cylinders tonight) “They were, at least close. I don’t know, we’ll get back in the film room, pick it apart and strive to improve to perfection. It’s probably impossible to get to, but that’s what we’re looking for. At some point in time, I know we had a lull, but we just have to keep working at it, keep moving forward and get ready to go again next week.”
(on catching three touchdowns in the game) “All we do is go out and do our jobs, everyone across board. When we do that, we’ll form up. We’ve been far from putting a complete game together throughout this season. We’ll look at the film and see how close we came tonight. We just have to continue to improve. It’s a long ways away from being where we want to be, so we just have to continue to get better and keep grinding and keep working.”
(on the difference with QB Aaron Rodgers tonight) “I think it’s just everyone doing their job, him included, all the way across the board. We came in and played well tonight. Once we look at film, it’s been something different every time. No matter what it is that’s got us in a lull and not performing the way we need to. So I think everyone just stepped up and did their job, him included. When we do that, we can be explosive.”
(on the defense taking the pressure off of the offense) “It’s great. I mean, that’s how you want to become a complete team. Those guys are going out and getting stops, we’re putting points on the board. Obviously that’s how you get a nice lead and you can kind of make a team one-dimensional and allow us to do what we want to do on offense. Whenever you can do that, we’ve experienced it, you don’t want to be on the bench on offense. As long as we keep scoring and they keep stopping it’s going to become that because they’re going to be running out of time. It’s how you become a complete team, and that’s where we’re striving to get to.”
QUARTERBACK AARON RODGERS
(on his performance and the game) “It was a game that I was into early. Coach (McCarthy) gave me some good opportunities to take some shots. I missed (WR) James (Jones) on the first one then we got that offside penalty and went right back to (WR) Jordy (Nelson) on a deep ball and he made a great catch. We got in the end zone and kind of got rolling from there. The line did a great job protecting for the most part, I stepped into one sack and then we had an adjustment from a run that was kind of the other sack. Did a good job protecting, guys made plays; we had multiple big-time catches down the field. Both of James’ catches where excellent for touchdowns. (WR) Randall (Cobb) made some great second reaction plays and (TE Tom) Crabtree had a big touchdown.
(on the Texans defense) “They challenged us. They played a lot of one-high safety, a lot of man coverage and put those corners in one-on-one spots with not a lot of safety help. So we wanted to take some shots early and as we got in the flow of the game, we kind of wanted to dictate the stuff we wanted to do on offense – shots down the field, double moves and made the most of a lot of them.”
(on Packers offense tonight against the Texans) “It’s a very good team. That team is going to be in the playoffs. They’ve got a great quarterback, great running back, and a very good defense. They’re very well coached. This is just a team that has a lot of pride in our locker room. I said it this week, there is not a lot of quit in that locker room. It’s almost better when people are doubting us a little bit I think; we kind of band together. People try to pull us apart this week and we stuck together and found our motivation within.”
(on this game being a must win) “I never like to use those words but I know what you mean. This was an important game for us. We had a couple not go our way, games we should have won. 2-4 would have been very difficult. We got a tough stretch still to play. Another road game next week before we get to come home and a lot of very good teams on our schedule left, five division games and we can’t add up too many losses early in the season especially the way Chicago is playing. We can’t get too far behind.”
(on hearing the criticism) “Of course I heard it. I mean it wasn’t like I paid a lot of attention to it but people, whether it’s good stuff or bad stuff, friend of mine they like to tell me what’s being said out there. I’m not someone that watches a lot of TV or puts a whole lot of worth into some of those comments, but I feel like I’ve always played with a chip on my shoulder and it helps when people give me a reason to have that chip on my shoulder.”
(on DE J.J. Watt) “He’s very good at celebrating. He’s a great player. I was actually joking with him in between the TV timeouts. After the first sack I kind of looked back and figured that’s what he did, I didn’t see it but I just said, ‘hey you got your own move why you messing with mine,’ I know he does the salute. When you’re a quarterback it’s interesting to see the kind of dances that go on around you and it’s not often you get to dance back to them. I made mine’s look kind of silly after my touchdown run doing my discount double check and have it call back on a holding call, but you got to give J.J. (Watt) a lot of respect. He’s a big time player in this league and he has a chance to be Defensive Player of the Year for sure and be great in this league for a long time.”
(on having fun with the discount double check dance) “It’s been great working with State Farm, the commercials have been great and hope we can keep doing them.”
(on WR Jordy Nelson) “Jordy’s a great player. He’s a phenomenal athlete, gives you a lot of confidence as a quarterback when you put the ball in his area that he’s going to come up with it. He made some big catches for us. The touchdown really got us going early in the game. It was just him running by the corner and making a good play on the ball.”
(on being committed to the run game tonight) “It was important for us to stick with it tonight. They’re sub packages four down one linebacker, playing a lot of six DB’s (defensive backs) so when they’re six DB’s are on the field you have to be able to run the ball effectively. They like to play wide techniques with their tackles. They got five really good guys who can get after the passer. They’re four are as good as any four in the league. It was important for us even if we weren’t super effective with it to make sure we were still making the attempts.”
(on Texans defense without ILB Brian Cushing) “Brian is a perennial Pro Bowler and it hurts not having him out there but we’ve found in Green Bay that the next guy needs to step up. We haven’t had (WR) Greg (Jennings) for good part of the season and it’s given (WR) James (Jones) opportunities and he’s done an incredible job for us and (WR) Randall Cobb and (WR) Jordy (Nelson) is holding steady, so they (Texans) need to have the same sort of thing happen with Brian out somebody will step up. They’re a great team and they’re well coached. They’ll miss Brian but somebody will step up and fill the void.”
Tags: houston texans, quotes
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GREEN BAY PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY
How satisfying was it to see the first team put points on the board and move the ball like they did?
“The first team offense was really productive. It all started with Aaron (Rodgers) and his excellent command of the offense. They were rushing four most of the time, and he (Rodgers) did a good job pulling the ball down and making plays with his feet. I thought we were productive, but I am sure that when we evaluate the film, there will be things that we need to correct and get better at. I really thought that the whole team improved today.”
What did you think of Cedric Benson?
“I liked the rotation with Cedric (Benson) and Alex (Green). We really wanted to accomplish that rotation in the first half. Cedric looked very natural carrying the ball tonight. Obviously there are some language adjustments that still have to be worked through, but he is an instinctive and powerful player. That much was evident in those hard, inside runs that he had. I thought he got off to a good start.”
How much is Cedric Benson going to help your play action game?
“I don’t know how you would like to quantify it, but anytime you have another weapon on your offense, it certainly helps. I thought he got off to a good start.”
Defensively, you were able to get some good pressure throughout the game …
“I thought our defense — and really the whole team, for that matter — had a lot of juice and bounce in them. The pressure on defense was good. Our guys were able to cover down in pressure situations and get good pressure with a three-man rush. We played smart out there. Overall, I was very pleased with the defense. The turnovers really made a big difference in the second half as well.”
What stood out to you on that goal-line stand that they had in the first half?
“First-and-goal at the one, and the favor generally goes to the offense. The big loss on second down was a huge play, and those are the type of things that I talk about throughout the preseason. You can’t simulate those things in practice, and when you have a chance to learn from those, it is always a good thing. You can either build off of them, or clean them up if it doesn’t go the right way.”
Tags: cincinnati bengals, post-game, preseason, quotes
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GIANTS TOP PACKERS, 37-20, IN NFC DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF
- The N.Y. Giants beat the Packers, 37-20, on Sunday at Lambeau Field to advance to the NFC Championship.
- Green Bay’s 15 wins overall on the season rank tied for No. 2 in franchise history (1997) behind only the team’s 16 victories overall in 1996.
OTHER POST-GAME NOTES:
- Today’s paid attendance was 72,080. It was the 302nd consecutive sellout (285 regular season, 17 playoffs) at Lambeau Field.
- WR Donald Driver caught three passes today, giving him a franchise-record 49 receptions for his career in the post- season. That surpassed WR Antonio Freeman’s mark of 47 career catches in the playoffs.
- With 45 receiving yards, Driver moved past WR Robert Brooks (651 yards) for the No. 2 spot in franchise postseason history. Driver now has 675 career receiving yards in the playoffs.
- Driver has now caught a pass in 12 consecutive postseason games, which is tied with Freeman for No. 2 in franchise playoff annals behind only RB Dorsey Levens (13 games).
- QB Aaron Rodgers set a single-game franchise postseason record for the most rushing yards by a quarterback with 66 yards on seven carries (9.4 avg.). That topped the previous mark held by Rodgers (39 yards, at Chicago, Jan. 23, 2011). Rodgers’ 66-yard day was the most by an NFL quarterback in a playoff game since Atlanta’s Michael Vick posted 119 yards rushing vs. St. Louis on Jan. 15, 2005.
- With 264 passing yards on the day, Rodgers surpassed QB Bart Starr (1,753 yards) for the No. 2 spot in the franchise postseason record book. Rodgers now has 1,781 career passing yards in the playoffs.
- With two TD passes today, Rodgers moved into a tie with Starr for the No. 2 spot in team history for the most TD passes in the postseason with 15 in his career.
- LB Brad Jones became the first Packer to block a field goal in a playoff game since DL Cletidus Hunt did so vs. San Francisco on Jan. 13, 2002.
- S Morgan Burnett posted his first career postseason interception with his second-quarter INT of QB Eli Manning.
Tags: giants, nfc divisional playoff, notes, packers, Playoffs, postgame, quotes
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PACKERS TOP LIONS, 45-41, TO FINISH 15-1
- Green Bay beat Detroit, 45-41, today at Lambeau Field. With their 15th victory, the Packers became just the sixth team in NFL history to finish with a record of 15-1 or better.
- The Packers posted a perfect record (6-0) in their division for the first time since the league went to a divisional format in 1967. The last team to register a perfect record in the NFC North/Central was the 1987 Chicago Bears (7-0).
- Green Bay’s 550 yards gained vs. Detroit today was the third-highest single-game total in franchise history behind only the 628 yards at Philadelphia (Nov. 11, 1962) and the 569 yards at Tampa Bay (Oct. 12, 1980).
- Sunday marked the sixth time this season that the Packers scored at least 42 points in a game. That is the most by an NFL team since the merger, besting the previous mark of five games by the 1971 Dallas Cowboys.
- The Packers set single-season franchise records for regular-season games won (15), total points (560), points per game (35.0), total points at home (321), points per game at home (40.1), touchdowns (64 plus today), net passing yards (4,924), fewest giveaways (14), fewest punts in a 16-game season (55), fewest penalties in a 16-game season (76) and fewest penalty yards in a 16-game season (591).
- Green Bay’s 6,482 total net yards this season rank No. 1 in franchise history, besting the 2004 total of 6,357 yards.
- The Packers’ 560 points on the season ranks No. 2 in NFL single-season annals behind only the 2007 New England Patriots (589). Green Bay led the league in scoring for the first time since 1996.
- With 70 total TDs this season, Green Bay tied the 1984 Miami Dolphins for the second-most TDs in a season in NFL history. The two teams trail only the 2007 New England Patriots (75 TDs).
- The Packers’ turnover differential of plus-24 is tied for the No. 2 mark in franchise history behind only the plus-26 margin in 1943.
- Green Bay’s 31 interceptions this season are tied for the most by the team in a season since 1962 (also 31).
- The Packers have now won 21 straight games against the Lions in the state of Wisconsin (including playoffs). The regular-season winning streak of 20 straight games is the longest home winning streak in the league.
- This was Green Bay’s fifth season sweep of the Lions in the past six seasons.
- Today’s victory was Green Bay’s 13th straight at Lambeau Field and the 19th victory in its last 20 contests at home.
- The 13-game home winning streak is tied for the fourth-longest winning streak at home in franchise history.
- Green Bay posted an 8-0 record at home for the first time since 2002.
- The Packers’ 25 regular-season wins over the past two seasons rank No. 2 in team history over a two-year period behind only the 26 wins from 1996-97.
OTHER POST-GAME NOTES
- Today’s paid attendance was 70,294. It was the 301st consecutive sellout (285 regular season, 16 playoffs) at Lambeau Field.
- QB Matt Flynn set franchise records for the most passing yards (480) and the most passing TDs in a game in franchise history (six).
- Flynn is only the fourth quarterback in NFL history to post 475-plus passing yards and six-plus TDs in the same game, joining Y.A. Tittle (Oct. 28, 1962), Joe Namath (Sept. 24, 1972) and Joe Montana (Oct. 14, 1990). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Flynn joined Dan Marino and Kurt Warner as the only NFL quarterbacks to throw three-plus TDs in each of their first two career starts (among quarterbacks whose careers started since 1970).
- According to Elias, the Packers became the first team in NFL history to have two different QBs each throw at least five TDs in consecutive weeks. QB Aaron Rodgers threw five TD passes vs. Chicago in Week 16.
- With a 122.5 passer rating this season, Rodgers set the NFL single-season record, topping the previous mark of 121.1 by Colts QB Peyton Manning in 2004. Rodgers is the first Green Bay quarterback to lead the league in passer rating since the system was implemented in 1973.
- Rodgers is the first 4,000-yard passer in league history to throw six or fewer interceptions in that season. The previous record of seven INTs was held by both Rodgers and QB Brett Favre (seven INTs each in 2009). Rodgers is also the first QB in NFL history to register two seasons with 500-plus attempts and seven or fewer INTs (also did so in 2009). The only other quarterbacks in league history to accomplish the feat in a season are Jason Campbell in 2008 and Favre in 2009.
- Rodgers’ average of 9.25 yards per attempt this season ranks No. 4 since the merger (min. 200 attempts) behind only Kurt Warner (9.88 in 2000), Chris Chandler (9.65 in 1998) and Ken Stabler (9.41 in 1976).
- Rodgers set single-season franchise records for TD passes (45), passing yards (4,643), completion percentage (68.3), yards per attempt (9.25), touchdown/interception ratio (7.50), and 300-yard games (eight), and tied Bart Starr (1966) for the team record for interception percentage (1.20).
- Head Coach Mike McCarthy is the first head coach in team history to win six consecutive season finales. As a team, the Packers have won nine straight season finales (2003-11), the longest current streak in the NFL.
- WR Jordy Nelson’s three TDs gave him 15 for the season. That is the most by a Packer since WR Sterling Sharpe had 18 in 1994. Nelson is the third player in franchise history to have 15-plus TD catches in a season (Sharpe, Don Hutson).
- Nelson’s three TDs and 162 receiving yards were single-game career highs, and his nine receptions were a career high for a regular-season game (also had nine catches in Super Bowl XLV vs. Pittsburgh).
- Nelson became just the second player in franchise history to have at least eight receptions, 150 receiving yards and three receiving TDs in a game (Javon Walker, 11-200-3, at Indianapolis, Sept. 26, 2004).
- Among Packers with 60-plus catches in a season, Nelson’s receiving average of 18.6 ranks No. 2 in team history behind only WR James Lofton’s 22.0-yard average on 62 catches in 1984.
- TE Jermichael Finley’s 767 receiving yards this season are the second most by a Green Bay tight end in a season behind only Paul Coffman’s 814 in 1983.
- Finley matched his career high (2009) with 55 receptions on the season. Those two seasons trail only Coffman’s 56-catch season in 1979 in the franchise record books for tight ends.
- Finley’s eight TD catches on the season are the most by a Green Bay tight end since Bubba Franks’ nine in 2001.
- RB Ryan Grant’s 80-yard TD reception was the longest reception by a Green Bay running back since Elijah Pitts’ 80-yard TD reception from QB Bart Starr vs. the Los Angeles Rams on Sept. 25, 1966.
- With 140 points on the season, K Mason Crosby became the second player in team history (Paul Hornung) and only the sixth player in NFL history to record two 140-point seasons in his career (141 points in 2007).
- Crosby’s 649 career points are the most in NFL history by a player in his first five seasons in the league.
- Crosby set a franchise record for the most PATs in a season with 68.
- P Tim Masthay set single-season franchise records for gross punting average (45.6) and net punting average (38.6). Net punting average has been an official stat since 1976.
- WR Randall Cobb’s kickoff return average of 27.7 this season ranks No. 3 in the franchise record book (min. 25 returns) behind only Dave Hampton (28.6 in 1971) and Al Carmichael (28.1 in 1956). Cobb’s 941 kickoff return yards on the season are the most by a rookie in franchise history.
- The Packers outscored their opponents by 201 points this season, the third straight season that Green Bay has outscored its opponents by at least 145 points on the season. The last NFL team to accomplish that feat was the San Francisco 49ers (1991-95).
- Green Bay’s third-down percentage of 48.1 ranks No. 2 in team annals since the merger behind only the 49.1 percent mark in 1995.
Tags: lions, notes, packers, post-game, postgame, quotes, records, statistics
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FULLBACK JOHN KUHN
(how it feels to be recognized like this)
“It’s just really an honor, because it means that the fans out there really appreciate you, it means your peers, your players, appreciate you, and it means that your coaches, the people that are directly involved in game plans, appreciate you. That’s very special to me. Some awards out there are voted on in all different kinds of ways, but the fact that I can say my peers, my coaches and the fans all really appreciate me, that means more than anything.”
(why he feels he received the honor and what his biggest contributions to the team are)
“I think it’s the fact that I’m versatile at fullback. I can play the traditional fullback role and lead-block, and the coaches also entrust the ball-carrying opportunities that I have. I think the combination of the two of those really gets my name out there.”
(whether the chanting of his name at Lambeau Field will get louder now)
“I can imagine. The fans, they are truly football fans here in Wisconsin. They won’t let this one slide by.”
NOSE TACKLE B.J. RAJI
(his reaction to being named to the team)
“I was pretty excited. It’s one of those things with the position that I play, a lot of times you kind of feel like your contributions go unnoticed, but this is just confirmation that somebody out there is noticing the work I’ve put in and some of the plays I make, and I’m appreciative for that.”
(on getting voted in despite playing a less glamorous position in the 3-4 defense)
“Like I said, it just shows me that the real football minds and the people that understand the game are able to make decisions based off of the film and not necessarily just off of popularity and things like that. It’s good to know that it’s a balanced process.”
(whether it’s even more rewarding after the disappointment of having not gotten in last season)
“I think it’s fitting in a way. Things have kind of aligned with the goals I set for myself when my career started. My No. 1 goal was to win the Super Bowl, and we were able to achieve that first and foremost, and that was the priority and how I had prioritized it. And then the second was obviously making the Pro Bowl, and now that I’ve done those two things, hopefully I can get many more of both.”
(on being the first Packers defensive tackle selected in almost 40 years)
“It’s definitely a big deal to me. It’s really very fulfilling, because the Packers drafted me with high expectations, and in my second year starting, I am now able to build on having won a championship and also the all-star accolades. Ultimately, it’s an honor that can be shared by our whole defensive line. I sent a mass text message to all my (defensive line) guys telling them how much I appreciated them and loved them, because without them, I wouldn’t have had the opportunities to achieve this.”
QUARTERBACK AARON RODGERS
(what the recognition means to him)
“I think it’s the culmination of a solid, successful season. I think it’s an award that is personified by consistent play, but also by a supporting group that has done their job as well. I’m very honored by the recognition, and very thankful for my teammates, the way they’ve conducted themselves and prepared and played, and for my coaching staff, particularly my individual position coach, Tom Clements, and I’m also very thankful to the fans for them voting me in as well.”
(whether being named the starter adds to the honor)
“It does have special significance, because when I was voted in in 2009, I was the third guy and I was very thankful to be voted in, and got the opportunity to start because of some injuries and guys not going. But it’s great to be voted in as a starter, that means a lot to me and it’s a special honor.”
CENTER SCOTT WELLS
(what the honor means to him)
“It means a lot, being that it is my eighth year in the league. I was an alternate years ago, I think about my fourth or fifth year I was an alternate. For it to take this long and to finally make it, it definitely is big for me. It’s always been a dream of mine, so I am excited.”
(whether he takes it as recognition for the offense)
“I take it as an honor as being a part of a special team. I think some of it comes off of the success that we had last year, and then rolling into this year and the success we have continued to have this year definitely pays dividends. As a team is successful, the individual accolades come, so I know it is a direct correlation to what the team has been able to do.”
(whether this has been one of his best seasons)
“I think so. I am not real big on talking about myself, but I think this has probably been my best year so far.”
(if the recognition is more significant because he entered the league as a seventh-round pick, spent time on the practice squad, etc.)
“Absolutely. I was talking to my wife about it and the fact that I was not an All-American in college. I was only All-SEC by the coaches’ vote. Then being a late-round draft pick and having to work my way up from the practice squad, going through what I went through in ’09 when I was on the bench for a couple of games and fighting my way back, it definitely means a lot to finally get recognized and to be named a member of the Pro Bowl team.”
Tags: aaron rodgers, b.j. raji, john kuhn, kuhn, pro bowl, quotes, raji, rodgers, scott wells, wells
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