Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Nov. 25

Read the transcript of Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s Saturday press conference. Packers.com will post these full transcripts after each of Coach McCarthy’s press conferences during the 2006 season.

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(How's Chad Clifton?)

He practiced today. He tweaked the hamstring earlier in the week, and he feels he's going to be ready to go Monday. He practiced a limited number of reps today.

(He hurt it on Wednesday?)

It was our Wednesday practice, just kind of bothered him again on Friday, so we were just smart with him. It's not a serious injury.

(How did Brett do today?)

Looked good. He's starting to throw the ball better, get a little more comfortable. I thought he had a solid day.

(How much did he do?)

He took more reps than normal, just because of not repping a lot of the base stuff in Wednesday's practice, but he'll be ready to go.

(Did he take all the reps with the 1's?)

Pretty much.

(Is the ball coming out of his hand same as always?)

He looks to be throwing the ball ... he's throwing the ball a lot better than earlier in the week. He's not 100 percent comfortable as far as it was in the past, but I think that's to be expected. We've got two more days, too. I do not anticipate any problems.

(Has he said he's getting the feeling back in those fingers?)

He says it's getting better, getting better.

(Did Barnett practice today?)

Nick did not practice today. We're going to downgrade him to doubtful. That's where we are with Nick. We had two more guys that didn't practice today, P.J. Pope and Aaron Kampman. P.J. has a hamstring and Aaron has a groin. We're getting some more information on those guys as far as testing.

(Will they be probable, questionable?)

I would say Aaron is probable, and P.J. is questionable.

(Prior to the last two weeks, you were moving the ball well on the ground. How do you get that back this week?)

The first thing you do is you have to attempt to do it. That's the starting point. Our attempts are down, particularly the last two games. There's factors in that, the guy calling the plays, third-down production and so forth. We need to get back to being more balanced. We've gotten away from that the last two weeks, and hopefully that will be our goal Monday night.

(How close is Tauscher?)

You have a doctor's opinion and you have the player's opinion. We're not in the same realm there because of Mark's history, being able to play with injuries. I'm hopeful next week may be a possibility. Every time we've talked he's feeling better.

(You said you would downgrade Barnett. Is that to out then, because he was doubtful.)

Yes, then I'm downgrading him to out. If we want to tell Seattle everything, then let's just tell them today. That's great. Yeah, he's out. He's out for the game.

(Is Abdul Hodge his replacement?)

Abdul Hodge will start Monday night.

(What have you seen from him since the season started?)

I thought he had a very good training camp, and it's unfortunate he suffered that injury at the time that he did. He was really a contributor on special teams. He's a physical, tough football player. He's what you're looking for in a middle linebacker. This is an excellent opportunity for him.

(What went into the decision to put Blackmon on IR?)

I've never been really around one of those injuries. It's more because of the location, so it will just take a lot more time to heal, so that's why we made the decision to put him down.

(Have you seen enough of him to know what you have there?)

I think he's very talented, a good kid, very bright. He's picked it up. After his opportunity the first week playing on special teams, he was kind of feeling his way around. The athletic ability, the speed, he has excellent size for the position, so we're excited about his future.

(With Barnett, is it that he can't do much with the cast on, or will he hurt it more if he plays?)

I think anytime you're dealing with that kind of injury, I don't know the extent as far as the way they had it taped. Future injury was not a big concern. The first week is always the toughest. The pain tolerance and the ability to get adjusted to playing with the club, anybody who's ever played with a club, it's an adjustment, and it just wasn't comfortable. He tried it yesterday, and as we moved further into today, it just didn't look like it was going to happen.

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