Packers' defense needs to 'change it up' and 'disguise it'

Key comments from Green Bay’s coordinators

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Packers defense

GREEN BAY – The Packers' three coordinators met with the media on Wednesday prior to the team's flight to San Francisco for the Thursday night game.

Here's a summary of their key comments:

Offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett

On seeing bracket coverage on Davante Adams:

We always see a little bit of that in certain situations. I think that when you face certain defenses, they have a foundation of what they do and they believe in what they do and they have different ways to protect guys besides just a true bracket coverage and a true double-team. I think you just have to find out each team's way to help on a guy like Davante. Everybody does it a little different.

I'm really excited for Dexter. He's a great young man. He's been here two years. He's much more comfortable in the system. I think everybody around him is more comfortable with him. I think it's one of those things you've got to take advantage of this opportunity. I think he's ready for it. He's fired up. He's looked good in the stuff that we've been doing up until this point, so I'm excited to see what he's going to do.

On the 49ers' zone defense:

They are simplified but they are very, very sound and they do play a lot of zone. But their two zones are very different. So, a play that might work for one zone might not work as well vs. the other zone. So you have to be really good in your play selection and what you're trying to attack.

Special teams coordinator Shawn Mennenga

On the workloads for the specialists on a short week:

Everything's going to be normal. On a short week like this, we don't have them kicking right now just because they don't kick or really touch a ball until two days after the game, and then it rolls into the day before the game. They've been doing some dry runs off to the side, just getting their legs right. They're good pros and they'll be ready to go.

On JK Scott handling kickoffs:

I think JK did a great job. The kickoffs, we talk about effective hang time, and sometimes them not knowing exactly where he's going to kick the ball makes it harder to call returns because they have no film on him ever kicking off. That helped us. We did a deep squib as part of our plan into the wind and it ended up rolling to the goal line and we tackled him on the 15. By the time they picked the ball up, it took 6 seconds from the time he touched the ball until they picked it up, which is really like a 6-second hang time, so it allows our coverage team to get down there.

Defensive coordinator Mike Pettine

On whether it was encouraging to have guys in position, hitting Cook at or behind the line several times:

I don't know if encouraging is the word I would use. But no, there's certainly something to that. We need to do a better job across the board. He has proven in his time in the league that he's a special back and he's difficult to bring down and you've got to make sure that technique-wise, you don't wait for him and give him a lot of open space to make you miss. Unfortunately, we did that a few times. So, no, it was obviously a bad day for us and the inability to get him on the ground is what cost us the game.

On possibly leaving the corners alone and selling out to stop the run:

I don't think you can give any offense the steady diet of just one thing. We do have a ton of faith certainly in Jaire Alexander. I challenge somebody to find a corner who's having a better season than he is. And certainly Chandon Sullivan's been very productive for us from the nickel spot. Kevin was playing at a high level and unfortunately got hurt. There are times where it's a calculated risk and you put those guys on an island, and Josh Jackson stepping up, he's done some good things for us. I just don't think you can give a team a steady of look of 'Hey listen, we're going to put those guys one-on-one on the outside for an entire game and say we've got to stop the run.' I think you've got to change it up, you've got to disguise it.

On potential confusion or misalignments vs. Vikings:

For sure, it was a sloppy performance. We were admittedly flat. Especially playing defense, you have to be at a certain emotional level, and we weren't there. To their credit, they got after us for a good part of the game. We settled in and finished the game well but by then, it was too little too late. There were some technique errors that we made, there were some physical errors that we made and there were some schematic things that some are fixed in-game and some we had to talk about and see on the film after the game.

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