GREEN BAY—Just how close the competition is for the Packers’ No. 2 quarterback spot is difficult to say, but if
The pecking order between Tolzien and current top backup
The two wins and tie Flynn produced kept the season alive until
But Head Coach Mike McCarthy said he wanted to see “faster tempo” from Tolzien in the preseason opener, and he saw it as the former University of Wisconsin QB was 8-of-12 for 124 yards in the Nashville rain and drove the offense to a TD to open the second half.
“We went some no-huddle with Scott, and he executed that well,” Offensive Coordinator Tom Clements said. “Scott is the kind of quarterback who gets back there and is decisive. He gets the ball out of his hand. He’s done that pretty consistently all camp, and it just carried over into the game.”
While Tolzien’s most memorable play was the backyard fumble recovery of his own miscue, the most important factor may have been that he didn’t throw any interceptions, which were his downfall last season. He threw five in losses to the Eagles and Giants.
His night might have been even more productive had receiver
After the game and throughout this week, Tolzien has downplayed his performance, which was better than Flynn’s statistically (5-of-10, 49 yards) but came against a lower level of Tennessee’s depth chart. He has frequently referred to it as “one game” with “three to go.”
Number two comes Saturday afternoon in a climate-controlled environment, and Tolzien just wants to continue making progress, whether that’s to remain a contender for the No. 2 job or make the team as a No. 3. Given the starters will play the most in the third preseason game, it makes this second one a big game for Tolzien.
“Hopefully, just cleaner execution,” he said of what he hopes to show. “It’s probably a broken record, but you’re just looking to improve every day, and looking to get cleaner and sharper and improve the tempo.”
Flynn and Tolzien shared second-team reps in practice this week, a sign that Tolzien could get the nod as the first quarterback off the bench Saturday after Rodgers departs. McCarthy said the order and playing time would be determined following Friday’s short practice.
Veteran defensive lineman
After the rain-soaked night provided a challenge McCarthy loved, visiting the Edward Jones Dome should have its benefits as well. It’s the third time in the last four preseasons the Packers are playing in a dome.
Earlier in his coaching career, McCarthy preferred to play all four preseason games on a grass surface, but he learned that it helps to play one in a dome given two NFC North foes normally play indoors. The Vikings are outdoors temporarily for the next two seasons, but the Packers will play in domes at Detroit and New Orleans this year.
“It’s good we get inside for one game,” McCarthy said.