Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Oct. 22

Read the transcript of Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s Monday press conference from Lambeau Field. - More Audio | Video | Watch ’The Mike McCarthy Show’ Packers-Broncos Game Center

(How did Koren look today?)

Koren had a good practice. He's in good shape. He seems to have excellent recall. We only worked on first down today, run and play-action. So the volume of what we put in wasn't very high, but he had a good day.

(Can a guy go that long without being hit and be able to suit up and play right away?)

That's what we'll find out. I really don't want to make any quick decisions. I really want to watch him go through the week of practice. Actually I just talked to him after practice. Everybody is excited he's back. I'm more excited for what he's accomplished and the track that he's on for his personal and professional life as he moves forward. But I'm just going to watch him every day, and we'll make an educated decision at the end of the week.

(What do you base it on? What do you look for?)

We had a very spirited, physical practice. It was probably one of our better practices of the year. I'm very pleased with the way our guys practiced today. We went with a large emphasis in the run game, as far as the reps, the way we spread out the reps. Probably a little too physical in some spots, but it was a good day's work.

(Did Jimmy Robinson meet with him the past couple of days?)

He's been here since Thursday. He came in here Thursday and worked out. I had three people call me and tell me how well he worked out, so like I said everybody is excited he's back here. Ty Knott met with him throughout the weekend. Ty is the assistant wide receivers/quality control coach, so he spent some time with Koren. But he seemed to pick everything up, and frankly this is probably the perfect week for him to come back just because of the way we're spreading out the installation. Tomorrow we'll put in screens and deceptives, the drop-back game, and third down, and then he'll have Wednesday to kind of sort through all that, and then we won't do the red zone until Thursday. So this is probably a good week for someone like Koren to be in this situation.

(Did he do football drills at API? It seemed like Jimmy was getting on him about the fundamentals.)

To answer your question, I would say yes he did. I don't know that for a fact. But I'll say just based on my visit to API last spring, I think they do an excellent job as far as their workouts. They're very applicable to the individual. Just the day I was there, there were a number of Boston Red Sox players there working, and you could see the exercises they were doing as far as everything they do in baseball, and there was a group of soccer players working, and then they had all the draft picks. There's a field right out there as part of their complex, and guys were doing ball drills. And he was working out with Tim Rattay, so I don't know that for a fact, but I would think he did.

(How much does he have to do picking up the scheme?)

He has a foundation. I can only tell by what I see and my conversations with him. He's off to a good start. There's not a whole lot new from his time here last year to this year. It's really like learning a language. He has the foundation, and things that have been added are a variation or two will come off of a base concept, so he'll have a basic understanding of a particular play, so I think he'll be fine.

(With your self-scouting, did you come to any conclusions about what you need to fix?)

Well, the first day of self-scout, we self-scouted our weather reports, and we were wrong again today. That's a joke guys. That was one thing we need to get fixed, switching practice in the middle of practice like that. But I thought the self-scout was good. The three areas I worked on on offense were the run game, play-action pass and quarterback movements, and like a lot of times when you go through this experience it's more what you do than what's been used against you from a scheme standpoint. We're just highlighting some fundamentals for particular players, particular concepts that we're in, both run, pass, protection from the offensive standpoint, and we had a chance to work some of that today. Defense was a little more positive as far as the time going through their quality control. Obviously there's some pressure things that we can improve on. And special teams was just more multiple-player rotation, just making sure you're giving a number of players the opportunity to play on certain teams. It was more on matchups and things like that, but we felt pretty good about the fundamentals and the things schematically we've done to this point.

(Favre's quarterback rating has dropped off in the last six quarters. Any reason why?)

I did not look at it that way. The pass game against the Redskins was not his best game of the year. Philadelphia I thought he played a solid half, and I would say the other four games he played very well. I think there are some things, particularly in the Washington game, that we just flat need to do better, and it starts with running the football. The biggest thing off that film is the finish. We need to do a better job with the finish, particularly on the back side, and I think that will help us in the play-action pass. When you're dropping back throwing it, we've turned into a little of a drop-back team, and there's nothing wrong with that. People have made a living that way. That's not the way I envision our football team, and I think some of that does affect the quarterback when you're putting it on his plate every single play, and I think we've leaned pretty heavy to that side as far as how we're using our quarterback. But I think he'll be fine.

(What do you lose replacing a veteran like Bubba Franks with a younger player?)

Flexibility is the number one thing that's affected, and you can just see that as we've gone through the game-planning the last couple of days. The flexibility to get in and out of personnel groups. I think Bubba is having an excellent year, and he'll hopefully be back as quick as possible. But once again, it's an opportunity for Ryan Krause. He had a good day today, too. He had a couple nice catches. It's an opportunity for him to step up. But Bubba is very experienced. There are particular things I think he does very well, and frankly I think we as coaches, myself in particular, have done a better job of putting him in those positions, so we need to do the same thing with Ryan Krause.

(Do you have a better idea how long Bubba will be out?)

I don't. It's kind of that normal process you go through. The player tells you one thing, the doctor tells you another. I know he's spent a lot of time on the rehab. I have to talk to Pat. I'll meet with Pat McKenzie in the morning, and get a more accurate update on a couple of those guys.

(How many weeks will you be without Frank Walker?)

Frank said he could play this week, so once again I've got to talk to the doctor. But he's off to a fast recovery.

(Does it look good for Wells this week?)

Hope so. We can do that Thursday I think is when we talk about the injuries.

(Are you putting greater emphasis on forcing turnovers on defense than you did previously?)

I would think not. If you watched us practice in the OTAs and training camp, I mean ball security for the offense and ball awareness for the defense is something that's part of our daily practice structure. We have a particular period that's assigned to that. I do not like the fact that our turnover ratio is at zero. I think we've given the ball away too much. Six fumbles and six interceptions is too high, and we need to do a better job of taking the ball away. So it's an everyday focus. We look at it as a fundamental of football, no different than blocking, tackling and all the other basics.

(When did the guys come back today? What were their responsibilities?)

They had lifting responsibility here in the morning. We met as a team at noon, and then we went special teams, and then we went offense and defense individual, and then we had 2:30 practice.

(Did you get the sense the guys came back refreshed?)

Absolutely. It was a highly energized practice. The team periods were excellent today.

{sportsad300}(Could you comment on the passing of Max McGee and what he meant to this organization?)

I think it's obvious to everybody it's a huge loss for the Green Bay Packers family. I did not personally know Max McGee. Had an opportunity to meet him on a couple occasions. It seems consistent that everybody talks about how he could light up a room. It's unfortunate, but it sounds like he lived a great life.

(Was everybody back on time?)


(What did you do on your time off?)

I went to Houston, saw Chris Francies and his family. His father passed away last week. Then I went over to Austin and I spent a couple days there in Austin, and then I went to Kansas City. I was inducted into the Baker University Hall of Fame on Saturday. So I got to participate in that. It was a very special deal, and then I flew back here yesterday morning.

(Was there a big crowd at Baker University?)

Huge crowd, huge crowd. They won the game 13-7. But it was emotional. Jason, you would have loved it, I cried like a baby. It was a very emotional time. It was a nice event, and I was totally overwhelmed. It was something you'll never forget.

(You were a tight end, right?)

Tight end, yep.

(Did you put up big numbers?)

They gave me blocking bits when I played. We ran the option.

(When did this come about?)

I don't know, it's been a while. They've been trying to just organize it with the schedule. The actual class was inducted I want to say two weeks ago. They had a ceremony up at the Arrowhead Club at Arrowhead Stadium. They just made this fit into our bye week schedule.

(Was it based on your playing career or what you're doing now?)

I think it's based on how I'm standing here in front of this podium. My numbers didn't get me in, I can promise you that. But we went to the national championship my senior year. It was great. I saw a lot of guys I hadn't seen in 20 years. We really had two very good football teams the two years I was there. It was awesome. It really was. I can't say enough about the day. I had a great time. I had my daughter with me, my parents were there. It was special.

(How long is the exemption for Koren?)

That hasn't been really cleared up for myself yet. Ted and I talked about it the other day. We're going to visit on his situation Wednesday, and maybe we'll have some more answers on how long we're going to take. He looked really good today. But I want to see how he feels tomorrow and so forth. It's usually one or two weeks.

(But it becomes a moot point if you decide he's ready to go?)

Absolutely. If we feel he's ready to go to Denver, it's a moot point.

(Do you have until Saturday or Sunday to activate him?)

I would think we'd do it Monday, because it's a Monday night game.

(Where was Cullen Jenkins today?)

He's still banged up a little bit. We're just taking it slow with him.

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