Green Bay Packers football is only two days away … that’s all that separates the world from the team’s first preseason game.
That’s the good news for fans of the Green and Gold.
The bad news …?
Well, I really can’t think of any right now … and neither can Mike McCarthy, who addressed the media today with his usual tongue-in-cheek comments and ability to keep the press corps on their toes.
But really, it’s become clear by listening to McCarthy, that he feels pretty good about this football team … and he should.
The team has been either lucky or very well prepared up to this point of training camp. Very few injuries have been reported and McCarthy today – jokingly – told reporters that it was clearly the head coach’s work that has made the difference.
Following up that joke (which drew no audible laughs), McCarthy said that he wasn’t concerned about a hamstring injury to cornerback Davon House.
Getting back to directly answering the question, McCarthy said, “We’re supporting these guys and giving them the best care we can. Today’s athlete is so educated … I worry about guys overtraining.”
McCarthy also talked about where his team sits as they prepare for their first preseason game Thursday night at Lambeau Field against the Philadelphia Eagles.
He addressed the single cutdown day to the 53-man roster; how many reps Aaron Rodgers could see in the preseason; how many games he will do the play-calling and which game he won’t; and how the games are most important in evaluating players.
As to the single cutdown day that will occur at the end of training camp, McCarthy seems to like the new regulation.
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“it’s clearly a benefit for everyone to work with these players another week,” he said. “The fourth preseason game will be more important … I think it’s a good thing.”
As for Aaron Rodgers’ playing time this preseason, McCarthy said the coaching staff will rely on last year’s reps to help determine how much preparation Rodgers will need to get ready for the regular season.
“There are so many different variables. I understand everyone wants to know [who’s going to play and how much] … but it’s a combination of players together that’s most important. You line up as best you can, but it’s really about getting as much information as possible.”
Play-calling situations were also addressed by McCarthy. He said calling plays in the preseason is much more difficult because of the many variables in play at this time of the year than is the case during the regular season.
“Personally, the preseason calls … there is more thinking that go into calls … there’s a lot more juggling going on. We’re thinking about so many different things that we wouldn’t think about in the regular season.”
McCarthy also said he would do the play-calling in the first three preseason games; Edgar Bennett will call the fourth and final preseason game.
So, as the Packers inch toward their first preseason game and their first regular season game against the Seattle Seahawks, the preparations continue.
Stay tuned …