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Posts tagged with "Mike McCarthy"

The Packers’ head official weighed in on Saturday.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

On Saturday evening, Green Bay Packers president Mark Murphy issued a statement in response to President Donald Trump’s comments from Friday night regarding demonstrations by NFL players during the national anthem prior to games.

Here is Murphy’s statement in its entirety:

It’s unfortunate that the President decided to use his immense platform to make divisive and offensive statements about our players and the NFL. We strongly believe that players are leaders in our communities and positive influences. They have achieved their positions through tremendous work and dedication and should be celebrated for their success and positive impact. We believe it is important to support any of our players who choose to peacefully express themselves with the hope of change for good. As Americans, we are fortunate to be able to speak openly and freely.”

Support for players who do not stand for the anthem appears to be shared through different levels of the Packers’ organization. In August, general manager Ted Thompson was asked about the anthem demonstrations during a press conference in training camp, and responded with the following (per

“I view this as something that you’re asking me from a personal standpoint, not what I would do but what I would feel about a particular player if he made such and such action or if he failed to make such and such action. This is a free country, in my opinion, and free people can do what they like.”

Head coach Mike McCarthy did not specifically weigh in on the demonstrations himself, but mentioned in August (per that he gives a presentation to the Packers’ players regarding the anthem.

“Our approach has always been to give the history and the understanding of what the national anthem means, and why it’s played before any National Football League game, particularly how it started after World War II. I go through the whole history and the importance of what it means to you personally.”

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packers jump photo 8-26

GREEN BAY — General manager Ted Thompson and coach Mike McCarthy always say how hard final roster cuts are, and they seemingly mean it. This year, though, the Green Bay Packers’ final cutdown will be different, even if it’s no more difficult.

After an offseason rule change that eliminated the intermediate cutdown from 90 players to 75, the Packers will have to make 37 roster moves to get down to the NFL-mandated 53-man roster limit on Sept. 2.

Complicating matters, as it frequently does with the perpetually young back half of the draft-and-develop Packers’ roster, is the team has a host of young players they’ll have to project long-term. With 10 rookie draft picks, a handful of intriguing undrafted rookies and a bunch of second-year guys making their cases to stay, Thompson’s decisions won’t be based solely on how players performed this summer and in the final two preseason games — tonight in Denver and next week against the Los Angeles Rams.

“The common sense part of the evaluation is where they are now. How much can they contribute now?” Thompson said. “Part of the evaluation is how much can they contribute a month from now, two months from now, two years from now. So, all that stuff, you’ve got to project. You’re not necessarily right all the time, but you do have to make a little bit more projection for those players that haven’t necessarily played as much football in their lifetime as other players.

“With each individual player, you go, ‘Player A, he’s this, he’s this, he’s this.’ And you go down the list. And you go, ‘Player B, he’s this, he’s this, he’s not this, but he’s this.’ You can’t imagine how difficult these decisions are. … You have to be a little bit of a soothsayer.”

With that in mind, here’s a look at how the Packers’ roster looks entering tonight’s third preseason game at Denver:

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Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Montravius Adams at the first practice of training camp on July 27, 2017, in Green Bay, Wis.
Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Montravius Adams at the first practice of training camp on July 27, 2017, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo)

When the Green Bay Packers kick off their four-game preseason schedule on Thursday night against the Philadelphia Eagles, rookie Montravius Adams won’t be on the field.

The defensive tackle from Auburn had surgery last week after fracturing the fifth metatarsal bone in his left foot. Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy said Adams would be sidelined for “multiple weeks.”

The Packers open their regular-season schedule on Sept. 10 against the Seattle Seahawks. Adams said he didn’t know if he’d be ready to play by then.

“They just said after this week, we’re just going to take it one week at a time,” Adams said. “Try to go after rehab strong and try to get back as fast as I can.”

Adams joined Green Bay in the third round of the NFL Draft on April 28.

After going through the Packers’ offseason program in May and June, he felt pain in his foot during the first practice of training camp on July 27. Adams finished that practice and practiced the next day before seeking treatment.

He ended up with a screw in the long bone on the outside of the foot that connects to the little toe.

“It was really depressing,” Adams said. “Most of the time, I’m just sitting in the training room. I see the guys in the meetings, but other than that I’m just in the training room trying to come back, so I can be with them. I don’t want to be over here. It’s boring. I want to play football.”

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This report implies that the Packers are simply establishing lines of communication only in case of emergency.

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Rashad Jennings is a 32-year-old free agent running back coming off a season in which he averaged 3.3 yards per carry. With that in mind, it’s not difficult to see why he remains unsigned in late July as NFL teams begin to report for training camps. However, Jennings has been in touch with teams about possible opportunities, and is holding out hope to get a job this fall.

Why are we talking about this on a Green Bay Packers blog? Because the Packers are, perhaps surprisingly, one of the teams who has talked to Jennings. That’s what the running back said today while being interviewed on SiriusXM NFL Radio:

In all likelihood, the conversation between him and the Packers would be limited to the team expressing interest in bringing him in if the team suffers unexpected injuries at the position. Ty Montgomery is established as the starter, and the team has a glut of intriguing rookies set with diverse skill sets ready to back him up. Each of those players should be a better athlete than Jennings at the present time.

However, if something were to happen to Montgomery, it would make sense for the Packers to give Jennings a call based on his intangibles. Not only is he a solid receiver — he has caught at least 29 passes in each of the past four seasons — but he also has a fairly light career workload, at least by 32-year-old NFL running back standards. In fact, he has just 1,121 career touches on offense (930 carries and 191 receptions), and he has never had more than 224 in a single season. Furthermore, he played the last three years with the New York Giants, the last two under former Packers quarterbacks coach Ben McAdoo, making a potential transition to Mike McCarthy’s offensive scheme simpler and quicker.

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Plus a couple of memorable postgame scenes

Dillon from Minneapolis, MN

Call me cocky, but if Jared Cook doesn’t catch the pass at the end of the playoff game against the Cowboys, I would bet Rodgers would have thrown a Hail Mary TD with no time left which would have also won them “Play of the Year.”

Would’ve been one heckuva throw with the Packers on their own 32-yard line. That’s 7 yards farther than Detroit, which was as high and far as I’ve ever seen someone toss a football. Be that as it may, congrats to the Packers on their three ESPYs, and to the fans for their part in the voting process. Another awards show done, another day closer to the season.

Denise from Bloomer, WI

If memories make us so rich, how come I forgot where I hid my winning Lotto ticket? Seriously though, if you do a trio picture, Aaron Rodgers HAS to photobomb it.

We’re not worthy.

Mark from Houghton, MI

What are the rules for a QB’s cadence? Could Rodgers say something comical, catch the D off-guard and perhaps with uncontrollable laughter? Or, state the name of a business, or person? I can see the potential for a lot of abuse, illegal payoffs, etc., so there must be something in the rule books. Payton Manning had his “Omaha.” I was waiting for his “Papa John” play.

Rodgers got a lot of attention for “New York bozo” a few years ago, but I don’t know if he’s ever resurrected it.

Greg from Cuenca, Ecuador

Insiders, if the Packer faithful believe in yin and yang, or karma, the Packers’ success with Hail Mary passes since the “Fail Mary” fiasco has evened the scales (at least somewhat) in the grand scheme of things. Don’t you think Vic would see it in this rather “whimsical” way?

Maybe. I’ve always looked at the “Fail Mary” and its aftermath as one of the reasons the Packers went 10-2 over their next 12 games that year.

Tyler from La Crosse, WI

With everyone talking about the “Fail Mary” and how much composure Mike McCarthy had, could you ever imagine how hard it was for the 11 players that had to go onto the field for the extra point? It’s amazing the players had the composure and respect for the game to go out there and put salt in their wound.

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Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

You know the saying “sometimes even a blind squirrel finds a nut”?

Well, former Green Bay Packers receiver Greg Jennings finally found an acorn.

Appearing on Fox Sports 1’s “Undisputed”, a show notorious for outrageous and flaming hot takes, Jennings gave his opinion on why the Packers have not yet won a second Super Bowl with Aaron Rodgers under center.

While many fans consistently point their fingers at defensive coordinator Dom Capers and the defense, Jennings instead thinks Capers’ boss, head coach Mike McCarthy is to blame.

While many will immediately dismiss this as just another bitter cheap shot thrown at his former team by Jennings, there is no denying he might be right on this one.

Here is what he had to say via The Sporting News:

He would cuff us. ….When you watch New England play, when they have a lead, they go for your throat, they don’t relax … they have a great quarterback, they have arguably the best quarterback in football, but they have no doubt about it the best head coach in football.

The Packers clearly have had issues putting opponents away. The most obvious piece of evidence is their NFC championship game collapse against the Seattle Seahawks in January 2015. Had McCarthy stayed on the gas offensively that game, this piece isn’t even being written.

Take a look at some games from last season;

Week 3 vs Detroit: the Packers led 31-10 at halftime. They won the game 34-27.

Week 15 at Chicago: Green Bay led 27-10 in the fourth quarter against Matt Barkley. Green Bay still won 30-27, thanks to some late heroics by Rodgers and Jordy Nelson.

Divisional playoff game at Dallas: Green Bay led 21-3. They hung on and won 34-31 thanks to the infamous clutch throw by Rodgers and a field goal by Mason Crosby as time expired.

Had the Packers not hung on in those two regular season games, they don’t make the playoffs and the Dallas game obviously doesn’t happen.

You can even wind the clock all the way back to Super Bowl XLV. Green Bay led the Steelers 21-3 before winning 31-25. They were out scored 22-10 after they went up by 18. This is clearly not a new issue for the Packers under McCarthy.

So now that it’s clear McCarthy likes to take his foot off the gas, the next question to answer is why he chooses to do so.

Maybe he doesn’t want to be the guy running up the score when he clearly could. That’s fine and dandy when it comes to sportsmanship, but all that does is show you lack a killer instinct.

McCarthy clearly likes to be respected by his peers, but when you have a defense that is clearly struggling you can’t go into a shell on offense. You have to keep your foot on the opponent’s throat, lest they rise and stab you in the back. Sometimes it’s better to be feared than it is to be respected, especially in a league like the NFL. Bill Belichick has made a career out of embarrassing opponents. Why can’t McCarthy? There really is no reason except a lack of willpower.

To be fair, the defense clearly has problems shutting teams out as well. Sometimes that’s due to injury and sometimes Capers lets off the gas as well. He deserves to have his play calling questioned too, but that’s anorher argument for another day.

That’s still no excuse for McCarthy, however. He’s the head coach and the buck stops with him. If he wanted Capers to dial up the pressure, he easily could.

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Packers’ third-year CB was offseason standout at defense’s “star” position

GREEN BAY – Damarious Randall isn’t exactly sure when he felt 100 percent healthy again this past offseason.

But he eventually got there, and he’s not looking back.

“I want to be about 200 percent before this season,” Randall said earlier this spring.

It’s a vast understatement to say Randall’s second year as a Packers cornerback in 2016 did not go as planned.

His position coach, Joe Whitt, isn’t one to make excuses for anybody, and even Whitt conceded the groin injury that forced Randall to miss six games and play at less than his capability for several others was “legitimate.”

Sitting out, trying to play hurt, coping with results that weren’t up to par – it was all a learning experience for the 2015 first-round draft pick. Randall matched his four interceptions from his rookie year (three regular season, one postseason), but everyone knew he wasn’t the same player.

“I’m a guy that relies on my athletic ability, and when you don’t have something like that, it tends to hurt you,” Randall said. “People pointed to technique and this and that, but it works hand in hand with each other. I’m just looking forward to the season.”

It showed on the field this spring. Taking a lot of snaps at the slot corner or “star” position in the Packers’ nickel package – which has become the de facto base defense – Randall was an offseason standout, according to Head Coach Mike McCarthy.

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Milwaukee Journal Sentinel-USA TODAY Sports

Once the shock of the Green Bay Packers’ biggest free agent signing in years wore off, the team’s fans got another shock when Ted Thompson signed a second player in the same weekend at the same position. Martellus Bennett made the headlines early on in the 2017 free agency period, then Milwaukee native Lance Kendricks’ homecoming put an exclamation point on the upheaval on the tight end depth chart.

The Packers are notorious for using “11” personnel — one running back and one tight end, with three wide receivers — on an unusually large number of offensive plays. This makes sense for a team that carried seven wideouts on the opening 53-man roster a year ago and has big money and draft capital invested in that position.

However, with two big, athletic tight ends added to the offense, head coach Mike McCarthy expects to run significantly more plays out of two-tight end sets — “12” personnel with one back and two tight ends, or even “22” personnel with two of each — than the Packers have run over the past several years. While this is a new wrinkle and a new evolution of the Packers’ offense, it is indicative of a gradual shift in offensive philosophy that has been gaining more traction across the NFL as a response to defense’s approaches.

As Robert Mays of The Ringer wrote on Monday, NFL defenses are sacrificing size for speed, and the pendulum is starting to swing back the other direction on offense:

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Josh Jones impressed the Green Bay Packers well before the 2017 NFL Draft.

Head coach Mike McCarthy got a chance to watch Jones when he was playing at N.C. State and he couldn’t believe what he was seeing.

“I remember seeing Josh Jones playing back in November, and Brian Guntekunst saying, ‘Hey, you’ve got to take a look at this guy,’” McCarthy recalled recently during an interview on ESPN Milwaukee (via “So he was a favorite player of mine in the draft class long before we even went to the combine.”

Jones can play a number of positions on the field despite being listed as a safety. In fact, he was lining up at inside linebacker during the Packers first set of OTAs last week. The Packers have two quality safeties in Morgan Burnett and Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. But they are looking for someone who can make plays all over the field whether it’s pass coverage, run defense and getting after the quarterback.

Sounds a lot like former Packers cornerback/safety Charles Woodson.

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The Packers signed Woodson in 2006, the same season they hired McCarthy. During his seven-year career with the Packers, Woodson would play cornerback and strong safety and recorded 462 tackles, 11.5 sacks, 38 interceptions, 15 forced fumbles and nine defensive touchdowns. Woodson was named to the Pro Bowl four times during that span.

Jones played three seasons with the Wolfpack and was able to play well against the run and make plays against the pass. In 37 career games, Jones recorded 229 tackles, 3.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and eight interceptions.

Jones is a little bigger than Woodson. Jones stands at 6-foot-2 and 220 pounds while Woodson played at 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds. But both players have lot of confidence, especially Jones who looks forward to playing a number of positions this fall.

“In college I played everywhere,” Jones said. “I kind of knew that whatever team that drafted me has some packages for me. I was pretty fortunate to get drafted by the Packers and this defense will allow me to show my abilities.”

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