Mike McCarthy Postgame Press Conference Transcript - Aug. 18

Read the transcript of Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s press conference following Saturday night’s game against Seattle. Coach McCarthy answered questions in the media auditorium after the Packers’ 48-13 victory. - More Packers-Seahawks Gameday

(Can you give us an injury update?)

Shaun Bodiford had an MCL injury. Mike Montgomery had an MCL injury. Ryan Powdrell also had an MCL injury. Orrin Thompson had an MCL injury. All four of our players had MCL (injuries).

(What do you mean when you say MCL?)

There are different degrees obviously. I'll know more in the morning. I'm guessing at least a couple weeks for all four.

(What's your overall take on the game?)

We definitely took a step forward as a football team. There are a number of positives that we can build on. I'm a little sour with the way the fourth quarter went. I'm very happy with the progress that we're making. We had a number of objectives heading into this football game, as far as being physical, finishing plays. Ball security on offense was clearly the one negative that we need to fix. I thought our group came out ready to play tonight. We had a significant lead at halftime. I'm pleased with the progress that we've made as a football team.

(What difference do you see with the No. 1s on offense?)

Rhythm and timing. We had the three-and-out early. I just thought they finally got into a rhythm. When you're running the football it makes your play-action game more successful. I thought Brett (Favre) was sharp on third down. The best-available play selection at the line, I thought he did a nice job of that. They gave us significant pressure throughout the game. We had a couple problems on third down. We need to clean that up. We had a couple protection errors that cost us potential big-play opportunities. We have a lot of work to do. I'm excited about the win. I think our team is gaining confidence. I've already stated that we've made progress but we still have a lot of work to do.

(What about Bubba Franks?)

Bubba is transferring his preparation and practice performance into the game. I'm very happy with the training camp that Bubba's had. I think being smart with the one-a-day practices and taking care of his knee has really helped him. He had a nice night.

(Did he get the wind knocked out of him?)

Yeah, he was able to come back. He didn't make the list.

(How would you feel about Brandon Jackson if he were your starter on opening day?)

Well, right now he is our starter. I think he's getting better with each game. I thought he ran with body lean under his pads better than he did against Pittsburgh for the whole game. That's something he's working hard on. His blitz pick up will continue to improve.

He's a tough kid. He works hard. He's very talented. I'm happy with the way he attacked training camp and has taken full advantage of his opportunities.

(Did Atari Bigby close the gap on the starting safety spot?)

Tomorrow's evaluation will give us a better indication of that. I thought Atari, with just the two sacks and the big plays that he made, really stood out. I'm just excited for the whole defense and the big plays that they made, especially the point production that we made off of those plays. The defense is playing with a lot of confidence. It starts up front. They're doing an excellent job of controlling the line of scrimmage. The guys on the back end are just flying around. The communication and continuity is where it needs to be. I'm excited with where we're at on defense.

(Did you change something with the return game or just get better exectution?)

Clearly, it was better execution. I thought that Will (Blackmon) did an amazing job setting the return that he had. That was a major emphasis coming out of the offseason, finishing the blocks in the return game. We did not do a very good job of it in Pittsburgh. It looks like we did a better job tonight because we had a lot of productivity in the return game, particularly early in the game.

(What can be done to correct the backside pursuit?)

We played well. We had one fullback for two and a half quarters. There are things that you can do schematically with two backs that take care of the backside pursuit. I'm not making any excuses. We were a one-back team for the second half and we did a very poor job of running the football. Part of it was scheme. We didn't have very good angles. Our guys played uphill. That's more my fault. We were a one-back team in the second half because once we lost Ryan Powdrell it was down to Korey Hall. And he played a significant amount of snaps on special teams and started cramping up in the third quarter. We were just trying to mask it together offensively. Frankly, we put Paul (Thompson) in a tough spot there in the fourth quarter.

(Can you talk about the James Jones catch that you challenged?)

The challenge was (if) his feet were in bounds. That was the challenge.

(They did determine that he came down with the ball?)

Correct, yes.

(What happened on Jones' TD catch on the post route?)

I didn't get a clear look at the throw but with the feedback I got from Aaron (Rodgers) - because I didn't think he had to throw it as low as he did - he said that's where he was trying to put it based on where the safety was at. It's a base play of ours in the red zone, flanker short post. It's been run for years. It comes down to the cut, the timing between that flanker and quarterback on that particular play. The most important that did happen was that Aaron threw it in rhythm and the timing was very good. As far as the ball placement, whether he had to go low or not, I'll see tomorrow in the film.

(Did Blackmon seal up the return job?)

He's exciting. He had three returns, the two in Pittsburgh and the one tonight, that could make you believe that. We'll be back in here tomorrow to watch the film. We'll make more evaluations. We still have two preseason games to play so we'll sort that out.

(Why has Jones done so well?)

He's everything that we thought he was when we drafted him. He's a big, physical, pro-type flanker receiver that we felt coming out of San Jose (State). We've left him exclusively at flanker. He's benefited from those opportunities. He's done a nice job. He catches everything that hits his hands. He's a physical guy that will only get stronger. He needs to continue to improve on the little things too. He had two touchdowns tonight but we all have work to do and he's one of them.

(Will you bring in another fullback?)

I'll talk about that when I get back inside with Ted (Thompson). Ryan Powdrell will probably be a couple weeks. I'm hoping Brandon Miree can play against Jacksonville. We want to be a two-back team. We don't have enough fullbacks right now. We'll make that decision in the morning.

{sportsad300}(Could you comment on the progress Aaron Rodgers has made last year to this year, particularly the difficulty in doing that when you can't play?)

Aaron is at the point in his career he needs to play. You play behind Brett Favre, we were just talking to Matt Hasselbeck about it before the game, you don't get any opportunities to play during the season. This is his time of year. He has paid the price in the offseason with the quarterback school development. I think the game has slowed down for him. You can see that in his footwork. He plays under control. I thought he played almost a little too relaxed a couple times when they did have pressure on us. He's a gifted young man. He can make all the throws. He can play in space. He's patient in the pocket and I just can't get him enough reps.

(Do you envision the defense making big plays all year?)

It's a major emphasis. When you stand up here and say this to your football team, what you want the football team to look like, we refer to it as ball command. When the defense is on the field that's ball extraction from the offense. The offense is ball security, protecting the football. You guys are at practice every day. We have a ball-security drill every day. It's a major emphasis for us. We did not accomplish that tonight offensively. We definitely accomplished it with six takeaways defensively. When you practice it and it shows up in the game, that's what you're looking for.

(Are you disappointed in Greg Jennings play?)

No, I'm not disappointed in his play. It's more about opportunities. I'm not calling plays to get the ball to certain people. You're looking at different combinations. I spend more time looking at the depth chart trying to figure out how many plays a guy's played and who he's played with and trying to get different combinations. Greg should not be disappointed in his opportunities. I'm sure he is. He's a true competitor. Greg Jennings will get the football.

(What happened on the bad snap to Rodgers?)

It looked a little high and a little hot. If I'm coaching the quarterback he's got to catch the ball. If I'm coaching the center he's got to have better placement. Quarterback-center exchange fumbles, there's no excuse for that.

(With your defense, do you take into account that Seattle's starting tackles didn't play?)

It's not going to affect the grade. It's preseason. Sometimes you run into games like that. I don't think the score doesn't tell the whole story about the Seattle Seahawks and it doesn't tell the whole story about the Green Bay Packers. You have different agendas on both sides of the ball. We're more worried about what we're doing, how we're playing the techniques, doing the little things and we'll continue to stay that way. The base fundamentals you're trying to hit day in and day out. I worry more about what we're doing and not exactly who we're doing it against.

(How did Paul Thompson do?)

In fairness to Paul I need to look at the film. I'm not making any excuses for him, but we didn't put him in a lot of favorable play selections. Trying to run the ball out of one-back, we were not productive at all running the football. He had some nice throws. The two interceptions didn't look good to anyone. Without seeing the film I don't want to be so critical. You can't turn the football over, especially where he turned the football over, down in the red zone.

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