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Packers look to defend Lambeau Field against Tampa Bay

Clay Matthews, Aaron Jones continue "trial return" to practice



GREEN BAY – The Packers enter Sunday's matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looking to defend their home turf at Lambeau Field after recent losses to New Orleans, Detroit and Baltimore.

Green Bay has had a string of success against Tampa Bay at home, winning 14 of 15 games dating back to 1990 (including playoffs). The Packers also rank second in the NFL in December victories since 2014, winning 11 of 12.

"We've been very successful here at Lambeau," said Head Coach Mike McCarthy during his pre-practice news conference Thursday. "I can tell you there's not a worse feeling in my coach career than walking into that tunnel after a loss. Trust me, it hits all of us. We have an incredible fan base. We totally appreciate the specialty of Lambeau Field and the importance of not only winning here, but playing well here."

The Packers have chosen not to practice in pads this week due to league rules prohibiting teams from practicing in pads more than three times during the final six weeks of the regular season.

McCarthy said running back Aaron Jones (knee) will practice on a "trial-return" basis after being limited Wednesday. He's expected to participate in team drills as the team continues to evaluate his status for Sunday.

McCarthy said defensive tackle Kenny Clark (ankle) and linebacker Clay Matthews (groin) also fall into the same designation as Jones. Both starters expressed optimism about playing Sunday after being limited Wednesday.

"He creates havoc," said McCarthy of Matthews. "When he lines up and plays on our defense, obviously the offense knows where he is. That's why over the years you have to move him around. He's a very disruptive player. The statistics don't always tell the whole story. We're a much better defense when he's on the field."

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