Notebook: Fast Start A Focus As Team Looks To Rebound

Coming off their first three-game losing streak since 2006 and heading to one of the toughest venues in the league, the Packers know that getting back in the win column this week will be a challenge. - More Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Oct. 8


Coming off their first three-game losing streak since 2006 and heading to one of the toughest venues in the league, the Packers know that getting back in the win column this week will be a challenge.

But with Green Bay's next three games coming against '07 playoff teams and holding playoff aspirations of their own, several players said the time is now to correct the issues that have plagued the Packers in their losses this season.

"It's just a sense of urgency," quarterback Aaron Rodgers said. "We realize we've got to play well and it starts now. We realize we have 11 games left but it's time to start playing the way we feel we're capable of playing."

Green Bay's main struggles this season have centered on penalties (second in the league with 44), run defense (27th in the NFL) and slow starts (17 first-quarter points).

"We've been hurting ourselves with penalties," wide receiver Donald Driver said. "We'll start and have a big play and then it gets called back for whatever reason. Our biggest thing is to start fast and not have those pre-snap penalties."

The fast start will be even more crucial at Seattle in a stadium well-known for its crowd noise. The Seahawks are 37-13 (.740) all-time at Qwest Field, and are desperate for a win themselves with a 1-3 record and coming off a 44-6 loss at the New York Giants.

"When you go on the road in a tough environment, the biggest thing is you've got to start fast," Rodgers said. "We need to put together a four-quarter game, and that starts with the first drive."

Wednesday's practice was the Packers' first on-field work since the disappointing loss at home to Atlanta on Sunday, which included three-and-outs on the first two possessions as the Falcons jumped out to a 10-0 lead.

"We addressed everything on Monday and guys got a chance to look at themselves in the mirrors," defensive end Aaron Kampman said. "Practice was very focused. For the situation that we're in, we had some pretty good positive energy today. That's encouraging, so we'll build off that."

While the team has spent plenty of time evaluating what needs to be corrected from last week, Head Coach Mike McCarthy said all of the team's attention is now focused on this week's game.

"This is a big challenge," McCarthy said. "This is a tough place to play. They are a very good football team. They are well coached, so this is a big-time challenge.

"We can't be sitting here talking about what happened on Sunday. And that's one thing I made clear this morning. We are about the Seattle Seahawks right now."

Rodgers: 'No doubt' I'll play

Last week the decision on quarterback Rodgers' ability to play against Atlanta was made just a few hours before kickoff. This week there isn't any uncertainty.

Rodgers said Wednesday he is confident he will play Sunday against the Seahawks, even though he will be limited in practice once again this week. He added that he felt better Wednesday than he did at the same point heading into the Falcons game.

"I think I proved to the staff and myself, although you don't want to have this be a precedent, but I can play effectively without practicing all week," Rodgers said. "I want to be out there as much as I can, but you've got to be realistic with the state of my body at the moment.

"The preparation is still going to be the same. The mental reps I am taking in practice during the walk-through and watching the film post-practice is going to stay the same."

Rodgers said his rehab will continue to focus on strengthening his shoulder and working on flexibility, and that he hopes to be able to do more during Friday's practice than he did last week.

"Realizing the pain that I went through last week and pushing through it, I think that just told me I can play with it," Rodgers said. "I'm hoping the pain and the soreness will be less, but either way I'm going to go."

Moving on up

Rookie linebacker Danny Lansanah, promoted from the practice squad Tuesday following the release of veteran linebacker/special teamer Tracy White, will be active this week at Seattle according to McCarthy.

Lansanah, who originally signed with the team in May as a non-drafted free agent out of Connecticut, joins running back Kregg Lumpkin as the only undrafted rookies on the roster.

"I think they are two young players I didn't know a whole lot of personally from my viewpoint, and every time they were given an opportunity they produced," McCarthy said. "They both grew on us in training camp and just kept getting better and better and better.

"Obviously Kregg Lumpkin made the 53(-man roster) but Danny was right there too on the doorstep at the final cut. I just think they are both very similar in that they are going to keep progressing and I think they've got a chance to be excellent players."

Lansanah said the Miami Dolphins were interested in signing him to their active roster, but the Packers made the decision to do the same.

McCarthy said Lansanah took all of the reps Wednesday on special teams.

"The first thing I did was call my father and he just started going crazy, yelling on the phone and stuff like that," Lansanah. "Now I'm up, but it's what I do with my opportunity and I've got to take advantage of it."

{sportsad300}Injury/participation update

Cornerback Al Harris (spleen) is out for the game again this week.

Players who did not participate in practice Wednesday were safety Atari Bigby (hamstring), defensive end Jason Hunter (hamstring), wide receiver James Jones (knee), defensive end Michael Montgomery (ankle) and cornerback Charles Woodson (toe).

McCarthy said Montgomery has a "pretty good" ankle sprain and that he will likely have to work out Sunday morning before the game before a determination is made on whether he can play. Rookie defensive end Jeremy Thompson will be active again and would likely get a lot of playing time if Montgomery is inactive.

Limited participants in addition to Rodgers were tackle Chad Clifton (hamstring), defensive end Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila (illness), fullback Korey Hall (knee), linebacker A.J. Hawk (groin), running back Kregg Lumpkin (hamstring), defensive tackle Ryan Pickett (knee) and safety Aaron Rouse (knee).

McCarthy said that the staff has discussed resting Clifton against the Seahawks to help him get healthy, but that Clifton went through a rehab session Wednesday and the team will try to have the best plan to get him healthy for Sunday's game.

McCarthy added that he hopes to have Hall active this week, primarily for special teams, and that Lumpkin may practice Thursday.

For the Seahawks, wide receiver Deion Branch (foot) and quarterbacks Matt Hasselbeck (knee) and Seneca Wallace (calf) did not participate.

Linebacker Leroy Hill (knee) and tackle Walter Jones (team decision) were limited participants.

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