Packers-Titans Preseason Week 4 Dope Sheet

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*Two years after he co-founded the Packers with Curly Lambeau, George Calhoun began writing a piece called The Dope Sheet, which served as the official press release and game program from 1921-24.

Honoring Calhoun, the first publicity director, the Packers are running this weekly feature as their release, which is being made available to fans exclusively on Packers.com.

A complete edition of the Dope Sheet will be available each week during the season in PDF format, located in the Packers.com Game Centers.

This is an abbreviated version of the Packers-Titans Preseason Week 4 Dope Sheet. To read the full version, download the PDF by clicking here.

Here are some highlights from the Packers-Titans Preseason Week 4 Dope Sheet:*

**GREEN BAY (3-0) at TENNESSEE (2-2)

Thurs., Sept. 3 - LP Field - 7 p.m. CDT

FAMILIAR PRESEASON FOES SQUARE OFF IN NASHVILLE**

  • Green Bay heads south to Nashville to close out the preseason schedule with a game against the Tennessee Titans on Thursday night. It will be the eighth consecutive year the two teams have met in the preseason finale.
  • The Packers will close out a preseason that has thus far seen all three first-team units clicking on all cylinders. Maintaining that momentum through its final test before the 2009 opener will be the main goal in Nashville.
  • Green Bay's personnel and coaching staffs will get its final look to evaluate players as the team faces the tough task of reducing the 75-man roster down to 53. The final roster reduction comes Sept. 5.
  • Generally in this game, Head Coach Mike McCarthy has opted to play his starters for a series or two, whereas Titans coach Jeff Fisher has played his starters into the third quarter.
  • While the Packers are expected to stick to their usual schedule regarding playing time in a preseason finale, perhaps Tennessee will reverse its usual course of action. Not only will this be the fifth preseason game for the Titans, but they also open the 2009 NFL schedule with a contest at the Pittsburgh Steelers next Thursday.
  • The Titans are 2-2 thus far, most recently dropping a 23-17 decision in Cleveland last Saturday. Thursday will mark the 10th all-time preseason meeting between the two franchises.

STARTERS CONTINUE TO ROLL

  • As each week goes by, the Packers' respective starting units keep putting together performances that are better than their last.
  • And given that starters will see their most limited action of the preseason against Tennessee, a look at their numbers through the first three games tell the story of the momentum built during August.
  • On offense, the starters have yet to punt. In 12 possessions, they have produced nine touchdowns and one field goal. One drive was ended by a missed field goal and another on downs in the red zone.
  • QB Aaron Rodgers continues to produce gaudy statistics (71.1% completion percentage, 458 passing yards, six TDs and zero interceptions) and a quarterback rating of 151.1. Rodgers has been quick to credit the No. 1 offensive line, which has not yielded a sack yet.
  • The defense has an astounding 13 takeaways (eight interceptions, five fumbles), and the starters have allowed only 10 points.
  • All told, Green Bay's starters have outscored opponents 76-10 in six quarters of play. But, to a man, each has acknowledged that it will mean nothing if it is not carried over into the regular season.
  • "When we do our job we're hard to stop," RB Ryan Grant said. "It's definitely preseason so you keep things in perspective, but we should feel confident about where we are and where we can start as an offense when the regular season starts."
  • "It is only preseason, but I think we've put together some dominating quarters, a half last week," CB Charles Woodson said. "Even as dominant as we've been, we still made a lot of mistakes. We feel like we can get better, and I think we will."

WITH THE CALL

  • The Green Bay Packers Broadcast Partners will air the game over a nine-station network throughout the states of Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and Northeastern Minnesota, with CBS network production, personnel and the latest network-quality technology.
  • The top-notch broadcast team includes CBS's Kevin Harlan (play-by-play) alongside fellow CBS broadcaster Rich Gannon (analyst).
  • WTMJ's Jessie Garcia serves as the sideline reporter and WFRV's Larry McCarren joins the crew for pre-game segments. In addition to WFRV-TV (Green Bay) and WTMJ-TV (Milwaukee), the games are televised over WKOW/ABC, Madison, Wis.; WAOW/ABC, Wausau/Rhinelander, Wis.; WXOW/ABC, La Crosse, Wis.; WQOW/ABC, Eau Claire; WYOW/ABC, Eagle River, Wis.; WJMN/CBS, Marquette, Mich.; and KQDS-TV/FOX, Duluth, Minn.
  • Milwaukee's WTMJ (620 AM), airing Green Bay games since 1929, heads up the 48-station Packers Radio Network, with Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) and two-time Packers Pro Bowler Larry McCarren (color) calling the action. The duo enters its 11th season of broadcasts together across the Packers Radio Network, which covers 43 markets in five states.

**THE DOPE ON THIS WEEK'S OPPONENT:

Green Bay Packers vs. Tennessee Titans

All-time regular season: **4-6-0

All-time, in Tennessee:0-2-0

All-time, preseason:3-6-0

Streaks:The Titans have won the last three regular-season meetings and five of the last six preseason contests.

Last meeting, regular season:Nov. 2, 2008, at LP Field; Titans won, 19-16 OT

Last meeting, preseason: Aug. 28, 2008, at Lambeau Field; Titans won, 23-21

**COACHES CAPSULES

Mike McCarthy: **28-22-0, .560, (incl. 1-1 postseason); 4th NFL season

Jeff Fisher: 133-108-0, .552 (incl. 5-6 postseason); 15th NFL season

Head to Head:Fisher 1-0

vs. Opponent: McCarthy 0-1 vs. Titans; Fisher 3-1 vs. Packers

MIKE McCARTHY…Is in fourth year as the Packers' 14th head coach.

  • Was named Packers head coach on Jan. 12, 2006, his first head coaching job after 13 years as an NFL assistant.
  • Honored as the 2007 Motorola NFL Coach of the Year and NFL Alumni Coach of the Year.
  • Became the first Packers coach since Vince Lombardi to lead the team to a championship game in his second season.
  • One of only three head coaches to lead an offense ranked in the top 10 in the league each of the past three years.

JEFF FISHER…Is in 15th year as the 15th head coach in Houston/Tennessee history.

  • The NFL's current leader in head-coaching tenure, holds the franchise record for wins by a head coach (133).
  • Has taken his team to the playoffs six times in the past 10 years. The postseason trips have produced two AFC Championship Game appearances and one Super Bowl berth (XXXIV).
  • Presided over the most successful five-year period (1999-2003) in his club's 46-year history, posting 56 regular-season and five postseason victories, including two division titles.
  • Started last season with a franchise-best 10 consecutive wins.

THE PACKERS-TITANS SERIES

  • Green Bay played its first ever dome game, a 23-10 win on Nov. 20, 1972, when the franchises first met 37 years ago at the Houston Astrodome.
  • Since, the clubs have met only nine other times in the regular season.
  • The Packers are just 1-3 vs. the Titans since the franchise moved from Houston to Tennessee in 1997.
  • The teams' first meeting after the move, at Lambeau Field on Dec. 20, 1998, was a memorable contest. A 30-22 Packers win in snowy, 29-degree conditions, the game marked Reggie White's final Lambeau Field performance in a Packers uniform. Favre threw for three touchdowns, all to Antonio Freeman, who posted seven catches for 186 yards.
  • This marks the eighth consecutive year the two teams will conclude their preseason slates against one another. The Packers are 2-5 in the past seven meetings.

{sportsad300}NOTABLE CONNECTIONS

Packers GM Ted Thompson played 10 years (1975-84) as a LB for the Houston Oilers...Titans GM Mike Reinfeldt spent eight years working at 1265 Lombardi Ave., as Chief Financial Officer (1991-93) and Vice President of Administration (1994-98); Reinfeldt is a Wisconsin native (Baraboo) and was a four-year starter at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee...Thompson and Reinfeldt are close friends, as the two were teammates in Houston (1976-83) and co-workers in Green Bay (1992-98)...Titans defensive coordinator Chuck Cecil entered the NFL as a fourth-round choice of the Packers in the 1988 draft and played in Green Bay's secondary from 1988-92...Titans assistant special teams coach Marty Galbraith coached at the University of Pittsburgh with McCarthy in 1991...Titans assistant secondary coach Tim Hauck played safety for the Packers for four seasons (1991-94)...Packers equipment manager Red Batty spent 13 seasons (1981-93) in the same position with the Houston Oilers...Packers college scout Alonzo Highsmith was selected with the No. 3 overall pick by the Houston Oilers in the 1987 NFL Draft and played three seasons with Houston...Titans internet coordinator Jeff Harding spent six seasons (2003-08) in Green Bay...T Chad Clifton (Martin, Tenn.), C Scott Wells (Brentwood, Tenn.) and DT Justin Harrell (Martin, Tenn.) are all natives of Tennessee and played collegiately at the University of Tennessee...Titans P Craig Hentrich played for the Packers from 1994-97...Titans QB Kerry Collins and Packers CB Charles Woodson played together in Oakland (2004-05)...Titans S Vincent Fuller and Packers S Aaron Rouse were teammates in the secondary at Virginia Tech...Packers LB Brandon Chillar and Titans DE Dave Ball were teammates at UCLA....Titans DE Larry Birdine was in training camp with the Packers in 2007.

INDIVIDUALLY VS. TITANS

WR Donald Driver has 19 receptions for 303 yards and two touchdowns in three career games against the Titans...DE Michael Montgomery had a career-high 15 tackles plus a sack in last season's meeting.

LAST MEETING, REGULAR SEASON

  • Nov. 2, 2008, at LP Field; Titans won, 19-16 OT.
  • The Packers nearly ended the Titans' eight-game unbeaten streak to start the season, but Rob Bironas' 41-yard field goal on the first possession of overtime kept Tennessee undefeated.
  • Bironas had a chance to win the game in regulation, but his 47-yard try on the final snap of the fourth quarter hit the right upright.
  • Donald Driver's 5-yard TD catch gave the Packers a 10-6 lead in the second quarter, but Green Bay needed two Mason Crosby field goals in the second half to tie the score at 16.
  • Driver finished with seven catches for 136 yards, while Ryan Grant added 86 yards rushing on 20 attempts. Aaron Rodgers was 22-of-41 for 314 yards with one TD and one interception.
  • Chris Johnson (24 carries, 98 yards) and LenDale White (8-77) combined for 175 rushing yards for the Titans.

LAST MEETING, PRESEASON

  • Aug. 28, 2008, at Lambeau Field; Titans won, 23-21.
  • Greg Jennings caught a 68-yard touchdown pass from Rodgers on the game's first play from scrimmage, but Tennessee scored 23 straight points to lead 23-7 in the third quarter.
  • Matt Flynn, who would win the Packers' No. 2 QB job coming out of the preseason, directed two TD drives in the second half. A 6-yard TD pass to Brett Swain got the Packers within eight points, and his scrambling 22-yard TD toss to Jake Allen on the final play of the fourth quarter put the Packers within a two-point conversion of tying the game. Flynn's two-point throw was caught by Johnny Quinn, but the receiver did not get both feet in bounds, ending the game.
  • Flynn finished 8-of-13 for 77 yards and two TDs. Kregg Lumpkin had 60 yards from scrimmage (27 rushing, 33 receiving).

BARNETT, MATTHEWS SET TO DEBUT

  • While most starters will get very limited reps in Tennessee, two players who may eventually work their way into that group are expected to make their preseason debuts Thursday.
  • LB Nick Barnett will get his first game action since an ACL injury ended his 2008 season in Week 10. Barnett, who began training camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list, has been back at practice for two weeks. He was cleared for contact drills just before the Arizona contest but was held out of the game.
  • A veteran leader of the defense, Barnett will be seeing his first action in the Packers' new 3-4 scheme. Eyes will be on Barnett to see not only how he bounces back physically, but just how quickly he grasps the calls in the scheme.
  • LB Brandon Chillar has been starting in his place and has enjoyed a fantastic preseason. Along with Desmond Bishop and A.J. Hawk, it now looks to be among the deepest positions on the roster.
  • Also seeing his first game action of the preseason will be first-round pick Clay Matthews, who returned to the practice field last week after being sidelined by a hamstring injury.
  • Matthews had gotten off to a quick start at the outside linebacker position, running with the first-team defense just days into training camp. However, the rookie was set back by a hamstring injury that had posed similar problems during the offseason.
  • Matthews will compete with veteran LB Brady Poppinga at the outside position opposite LB Aaron Kampman. A special-teams standout at USC, Matthews may be able to make a more immediate contribution on the coverage units.

STARTING 0-LINE SET

  • Two of the most intense battles during training camp – center and right tackle – were decided upon last week as Head Coach Mike McCarthy wanted to give the starting five as much time to jell as possible, beginning with the Arizona contest.
  • Starting at center will be fourth-year pro Jason Spitz. Having started 41 games in his first three seasons, including six at center, Spitz is an emerging young talent who worked at center all offseason. Relegated as a backup was Scott Wells, who has started 54 games in his first five seasons.
  • With Wells' experience and Spitz's versatility to play any of the three interior positions, it's almost assured that Wells would be the first lineman in should any injury occur among the first unit, especially given G Daryn Colledge's experience at tackle.
  • With Colledge and T Chad Clifton forming the left side of the line, the right side will be led by two new starters.
  • At right guard will be second-year man Josh Sitton, who may have started as a rookie last season had he not been injured in the preseason. Sitton did start twice as a rookie and saw action in 11 games.
  • Allen Barbre won the right tackle job and is perhaps the most athletic offensive lineman on the team. A guard earlier in his career, the third-year player made the switch to right tackle this spring and has impressed thus far. Barbre has played in 15 games in his first two seasons.
  • "This is the five, and we're going to give it a chance to generate the continuity that you establish when you do have five offensive linemen taking all the reps together," McCarthy said upon naming the group. "That will be determined clearly on production, their rate of production. So if they continue to produce, we'll continue to have continuity with these five and we'll move forward. If it doesn't, we've got guys that are champing at the bit and that are ready to go."

AHEAD THIS WEEK

  • The team hit the practice field Sunday for a jog-through that lasted just over one hour.
  • A full-padded practice on Monday will be followed by a shells practice on Tuesday, which also marks the final practice of the 2009 season open to the public.
  • After walk-throughs and the annual Welcome Back Luncheon in the Lambeau Field Atrium, the team will head to Nashville Wednesday afternoon.

INJURY UPDATE

  • In addition to the return of Barnett and Matthews, the defense may see the return of CB Pat Lee against the Titans.
  • The second-year pro practiced Sunday for the first time since Aug. 6. He had been sidelined by a back injury.
  • S Atari Bigby and DE Michael Montgomery, both of whom suffered hand injuries in Arizona, participated in the jog-through Sunday. Their status is still to be determined.
  • WR Greg Jennings (head) and RB Brandon Jackson (ankle) were held out Sunday after sustaining injuries against the Cardinals, and neither is expected to play Thursday. Jennings should be fine for the season opener, while a timetable has not been set for Jackson.
  • Four players who missed the Arizona game were also held out of practice Monday: CB Will Blackmon (quad), DE Justin Harrell (back), S Charlie Peprah (knee) and S Aaron Rouse (hamstring). Blackmon is considered questionable to doubtful this week, which should give other players a chance to make their mark in the return game.

DOWN TO 75

  • Before and after the Arizona contest, Green Bay made roster moves.
  • It released C/G Duke Preston, who had joined the team in the offseason as an unrestricted free agent. Preston played his first four seasons with the Buffalo Bills.
  • The team also placed TE Devin Frischknecht on injured reserve after the rookie suffered a leg injury against the Buffalo Bills. He had signed with the team as a non-drafted free agent this spring.
  • On Monday, the team released P Durant Brooks, WR JaRon Harris and LB Stryker Sulak.
  • The roster now stands at the NFL-mandated 75 in advance of the required roster reduction on Tuesday.
  • Most notable in those transactions is the fact that the punting job is now up to Jeremy Kapinos. Kapinos has picked up his performance of late with a 46.4-yard average and a preseason league-high 46.3-yard net average on seven punts in two games.
  • "He's battled through this competition," McCarthy said. "I thought he kicked well in the game. I like his disposition, the way he goes about his business. And he has the ball right now."

GREEN BAY BUILDS BIG LEAD, HOLDS ON FOR WIN

  • It was going to be difficult for the Packers' first offensive unit to top its production from the first two preseason games, but it found a way to do just that on Friday night at Arizona.
  • The No. 1 offense scored 31 points on its six first-half possessions and the Packers held on for a 44-37 victory over the Arizona Cardinals in front of 61,753 at University of Phoenix Stadium to improve to 3-0 on the preseason.
  • Leading the charge for the offense once again was quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who continued his impressive preseason play by completing 14-of-19 passes for 258 yards, three touchdowns and a 155.2 quarterback rating in a half of play as the Packers rushed out to a 38-10 lead at the break.
  • "I thought we were great tonight," Rodgers said. "Three games, no punts for the first team, 31 points tonight. Again, I'll say that the line was great. I rarely got touched. In the run game, I thought we opened some holes up and then it's just pitch and catch out there and guys made plays."
  • With four touchdowns and a field goal on their six series Friday night, the No. 1 offense has now scored nine touchdowns and a field goal for a jaw-dropping 66 points on 12 preseason possessions. The only series the Packers did not score on in the first half came when Mason Crosby missed a 29-yard field goal in the second quarter.
  • The first offense has not had to punt in the preseason and the No. 1 offensive line has yet to yield a sack of Rodgers, who has connected on 27-of-38 attempts for 458 yards, six touchdowns, no interceptions and a 151.1 quarterback rating in the three preseason games.
  • It started from the beginning on Friday night, with Rodgers leading the offense on a seven-play, 78-yard scoring drive capped off by a 3-yard TD run from fullback John Kuhn on the opening series of the game.
  • Leading 10-3 early in the second quarter, Rodgers started producing with the long ball, first connecting on a 55-yard pass down the middle to wide receiver Donald Driver to the Arizona 9. Driver was able to hang on despite being interfered with by safety Antrel Rolle. Two plays later Rodgers found tight end Jermichael Finley in the back of the end zone to push Green Bay's lead to 17-3.
  • Later in the second quarter, the offense struck even quicker. On the first play of the series, Rodgers sold a play-action fake to running back Tyrell Sutton and found wide receiver Jordy Nelson wide open deep down the middle of the field for a 76-yard score and a 31-10 lead.
  • But the offense still wasn't done. Safety Anthony Smith picked off quarterback Kurt Warner's deep pass intended for wide receiver Jerheme Urban at the Arizona 49 and returned it 38 yards all the way down to the Cardinals' 11-yard line with just seven seconds remaining in the half to give the offense one more opportunity. Rodgers needed only one play, finding Finley again on a back-shoulder throw for the 11-yard score and a 38-10 lead at the break.
  • Smith's takeaway was one of three in the first half as the first defensive unit continued its impressive run of takeaways in the preseason. Green Bay now has forced 13 turnovers in three games after posting four more on Friday night.
  • After not allowing any points in the opening two games, the No. 1 defense did finally see its preseason shutout streak come to an end, allowing 10 points and 204 yards of offense in the first half to one of the most potent offenses in the NFL.
  • Warner completed 10-of-16 passes for 139 yards, with Pro Bowl wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald doing most of the damage as he caught three passes for 75 yards. The No. 1 defense did sack Warner twice, including a sack/forced fumble by Charles Woodson that linebacker Aaron Kampman returned for a 24-yard touchdown.
  • Green Bay's second units did not fare as well in the second half as Arizona scored 27 unanswered points.
  • Cardinals backup quarterback Matt Leinart led the comeback by connecting on 24-of-38 passes for 360 yards and three scores.
  • After Leinart found running back Jason Wright for an 11-yard touchdown to narrow Green Bay's lead to 38-37 with a little more than 30 seconds remaining, the Cardinals elected to go for the win. Leinart's pass intended for wide receiver Early Doucet for the two-point conversion in the back corner of the end zone went off of Doucet's fingertips.
  • Arizona then attempted an onside kick, but wide receiver Ruvell Martin ran up to field it and returned the kick 39 yards for a touchdown to seal the victory.

BREAKOUT CANDIDATES

  • Every preseason, a number of emerging young players or surprising rookies jump out immediately when game action begins.
  • On the offensive side of the ball, it's been hard to ignore the emergence of second-year TE Jermichael Finley. His team-high nine receptions thus far have showcased his ability to separate from linebackers and safeties and his abilities in the open field. An athletic specimen at 6-foot-5 and 247 pounds, Finley turned down an opportunity to play college basketball at Arizona in order to play tight end at Texas.
  • "He's definitely a weapon for us," McCarthy said. "We felt that last year just the way we were able to utilize Jermichael the last couple games of the season, and now he's able to do the full gamut. He's another young player that looks like he's ready to take off."
  • Also standing out thus far on offense has been rookie free agent RB Tyrell Sutton, who leads the team with 154 rushing yards on 30 carries (5.1 avg.). Despite standing 5-foot-8, Sutton has proved to be a tough runner between the tackles and has displayed some shifty moves. He also worked some on kickoff returns, which could be a spot for him to make his push to be on the 53-man roster. Against Arizona, he saw his first action with the No. 1 unit.
  • On defense, no one has had more highlight-reel plays than LB Desmond Bishop. The third-year player from California has collected two interceptions, a sack and a fumble recovery. An adept blitzer, he has also forced a number of quarterback hurries and loud hits. He leads the team with 16 tackles.

WHEN IT COUNTS

  • No one needs to remind the Packers how important play in the fourth quarter can be.
  • In eight of the 10 losses from 2008, the Packers either led or were behind by no more than one score in the fourth quarter. In those same eight games, the outcome was decided in the final two minutes.
  • The "lessons of 2008", as Coach McCarthy has referred to them this entire offseason, most likely center around the Packers not coming up with the critical play in crunch time.
  • Their seven losses in games decided by four points or less tied the second highest total in NFL history.
  • It wasn't a problem of putting up points in the final frame, as Green Bay's 150 fourth quarter points were second in the NFL behind San Diego (152).
  • Perhaps most telling was the fact that the Green Bay defense allowed the second-most fourth quarter points (135) in the league. Only Houston (136) allowed more.
  • It comes as no surprise that the two-minute drill has been heavily stressed on both sides of the ball. The drill comes towards the end of practice to help simulate the fatigue and end-of-game conditions.

277 AND COUNTING

  • Lambeau Field saw eight regular-season sellouts in '08, bringing the consecutive sellouts streak to 277 games (261 regular season, 16 playoffs).
  • Lambeau Field, the league's longest-tenured stadium, will host its 53rd season of football this year.
  • A total of 565,460 fans came through the turnstiles in the eight home contests last season, an average of 70,683.
  • Lambeau Field also saw the four largest regular-season crowds in stadium history in 2008 (vs. Minnesota, vs. Dallas, vs. Indianapolis, vs. Chicago). The Week 3 contest vs. Dallas (71,113) set a new regular-season attendance record.
  • A number of games have the potential to challenge some stadium records this season. The primetime opener against Chicago – including the debut of new QB Jay Cutler – will be a tough ticket, as will home contests against the Dallas Cowboys and Baltimore Ravens. None, however, is expected to match the Nov. 1 game against the Minnesota Vikings, where QB Brett Favre is expected to make his return to Lambeau Field wearing an opposing uniform.
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