Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Aug. 19

(So you signed a defensive tackle (Rodney Allen))

He's someone we want to look at. I know Ted (Thompson) and John Schneider and Reggie (McKenzie) worked him out last week. He's out of Kansas. I'll know more about him once I watch the film today.

(Did Evan Moore go to injured reserve then?)

Yes. We'll move Evan on to IR.

(Are you concerned about the number of dropped passes?)

I don't like it. It falls under the category we talked about yesterday about fundamentals. We didn't have a very good night in fundamentals, whether it was our pad level, footwork, dropping the ball, throwing the ball, so those are all things we work on every day. We need to do a better job of it. I think we have a perimeter group that catches the ball very well, illustrated by what we have done in the past, but that doesn't carry over obviously to the present. We work on it every day. I'm not concerned as we move forward, but we need to catch the ball better.

(Is it even more disturbing when it comes from veteran guys?)

Concerned, disturbing, I don't look at it that way. We need to catch the football. It's not the norm. It's not the tendency here. We practice every day. We started out the first two games not catching the ball the way we are capable of catching the ball, so we need to catch the ball the way we are capable of catching the ball.

(With Aaron Rodgers, when you haven't played much in three years, is there kind of a getting reacquainted period?)

I think the only thing Aaron would have to get reacquainted with is being that guy every week. That's the only thing that he hasn't done. As far as playing and taking the scout team reps, they're not game reps but they are about as close as you'll get to it. He's had a lot of football from a practice standpoint, but as far as being the starting quarterback playing week in and week out, I think that's more of a discipline that he has to go through because you're going to have the bumps and bruises on a weekly basis that he hasn't had the last three years. But I think he has prepared himself for that opportunity.

(How did he look today in the blitz period and two-minute drill)

I thought he had a very good day, particularly in the third-down drill, 7-on-7, you've already stated the two-minute. I thought he had a very good day today.

(It seemed like a more spirited practice today, didn't it?)

It was good spirit today, in many different forms and fashion. Actually we were 16 minutes early. That's a Thursday practice structure. That's our longest practice of the week in an in-season schedule, but I was very, very pleased with the quality of work and I hope the film reflects that

(Is this as close as you come to a regular season week of practice?)

It's as close as we're going to get, just because of our schedule. Yesterday was an adjusted Wednesday. Today is a Thursday schedule. This was a full Thursday schedule and tomorrow will be a full Friday schedule.

(Did you have to take into account playing on Monday night?)

If you remember the schedule, it was an adjusted schedule. It wasn't a normal Wednesday because of two things. Number one, we're 48 hours removed from a football game. It's isn't like everybody played 50 snaps in that game, but that's why we cut it back because I didn't want it to be a long week where you are tapping out your players and leaving everything out on the practice field.

(Could you talk about the competition at linebacker?)

The linebacker group is a group with a lot of depth. I can't say enough about the group as a whole. I think you've got excellent competition once you get past...Brandon Chillar and Tracy White and Desmond Bishop and Abdul Hodge are having excellent camps. Spencer Havner is having an excellent camp. We're going to have some very tough choices to make there. We haven't had anything like that the first two years, so it is the deepest it has been since I have been here.

(What is the process for determining if Ryan Grant can play on Friday?)

He was in uniform today. He's getting close. It's a medical decision. When they say he can go, he will go. Until they give me the OK, that's why he is not in there.

(Are you throwing more because you are trying to get Rodgers more dropbacks?)

The way we are calling the plays has nothing to do with trying to get him ready as far as exactly what he needs. We're trying to get the offense ready. He's the quarterback. We had a number of runs that were checked into passes for various reasons, but basically generated by the defensive problems and their alignments, so we probably had more drop back passes in first and second down than we normally do. That's just part of your system. He has to run the system because defenses today, whether it's through pressure or an overload front or overload alignments, they'll line up and try to take things away from you. So you have to have the ability at the line of scrimmage to keep your offense in a best play available mindset, and he has done that. But as far as going out and saying, 'Hey, we're going to go out and throw 15 more drop-back passes in first and second down because he needs it,' that's not the case.

{sportsad300}(So you are calling more running plays than we are seeing?)

Yeah, that's the way we've played the last two years. We do things at the line of scrimmage. We don't try to beat our head against the wall too often. We do once in a while, but we try to be smart and give the players, particularly in one-back and displacement formation sets and with different personnels that keep us in a favorable play.

(Do you know what the scuffle was about during practice?)

No, I don't.

(Does it seem like there is a lot of that around training camps?)

I think it's human nature when you're banging against the same guy day in and day out, the frustration level gets to be a little higher. A little fight isn't bad, as long as we carry it over to Friday night.

(Do you feel like you have been hit with an inordinate number of injuries or is this normal?)

I would say it's normal for a training camp. I was hopeful to avoid this because of the number of practices that we had and the structure of our training camp, because of it being distorted because of the way our games came without the seven-day break, but everybody goes through it.

(Is it frustrating to not have everybody out there?)

I've never concerned myself with injuries. It's part of the game. That's why they give you 80 players in camp, and we'll just continue to move forward. I've always coached the guys that are available. Did it as an assistant coach, did it as a coordinator, will continue to do it as a head coach.

(Did you have a date in mind that you would like to have the starting offensive line set by?)

I think that question is answered on a daily basis. It's different than it was two years ago, because a lot of guys were new to the system. We had a number of rookies that were playing for the first time. Everybody involved in the decision-making has been here, except for Josh Sitton. Whether we do it this week or next week, I'm not holding a deadline.

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