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Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Dec. 18

(What was Ryan Pickett able to do today?)

Ryan went through practice in a limited fashion, and really how he feels tomorrow will be the determining factor if he goes on Sunday. The feedback was positive, but we're dealing with a hamstring, so the day after the work will be the final hurdle.

(Were you able to have him in team stuff at all?)

Yeah, he did a little bit of team. More individual, just trying to make sure he's doing the movement things that he'll be required to do in the game. I have not talked to Mike Trgovac or Ryan personally, just the communication from the trainers.

(Will you have to re-test him gameday like you did in Chicago?)

His testing was today. He went through a three-day process, and really how he feels tomorrow will be the determining factor if Ryan Pickett goes in the game.

(Do you have any clarification if Jolly will have to go down to Houston before the Pittsburgh game, or how this legal situation might affect him?)

I do not have any new information on Johnny Jolly's case in Houston. I don't foresee anything happening before the game in Pittsburgh.

(How confident are you Tauscher can go the full game?)

We'll start with the prospect of Mark playing the full game at right tackle, but also we feel very confident in T.J. Lang. I think T.J. has had an opportunity now to settle into more quality reps at that particular position. We feel like we're in good shape there.

(Where are you at with Jeremy Thompson? Do you think he can play this year or not?)

Jeremy Thompson is obviously still out with the neck sprain. We're gathering more information for Jeremy. He is in the process of getting a second opinion, and will continue to do so as we move forward. We have not ruled him out, but we're still gathering as much information as possible.

(Is Bell up to speed pretty well on the defense? If something happened at corner, would he be ready to step in?)

Yes, I feel very good about where Josh Bell is at in his time here. I would definitely say he is ready to go, both on special teams and on defense. He's done a very good job coming in and making the transition, spending a lot of extra time up top on the off days with the coaches.

(I'm going to ask you some questions about going home ... are all of your brothers and sisters going to be there?)

My whole family will be in attendance, yes.

(What makes Aiello's pizza so good?)

We're doing them a great service, there is no doubt about it. Red Batty asked me what my favorite pizza was when we went back there for the preseason game and I told him Aiello's Pizza. So that's why we're having it after the game. I was told the players liked it, so we're going to try it again.

(Aaron said in your Saturday morning meetings you've relayed a lot of stories from back in Pittsburgh. How is that a good way to connect with the guys?)

I think what Aaron is referring to is Saturday morning we have our quarterback meeting. There is about a 10-15 minute period at the beginning of the meeting for each player or coach to talk about what they did the night before and different experiences. Obviously I grew up there, so those experiences are something that we share in the more personal environment at that time. That's my life. That's where I grew up, and I'm sure that's where that came from.

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