The Packers’ coordinators spoke to the media on Tuesday afternoon. Here are some highlights from their news conferences:
Offensive coordinator Joe Philbin
On TE Jimmy Graham’s one-handed catch in Monday’s practice:
He’s really done a nice job. He’s had a good camp. He’s been a really good teammate with the guys in the locker room. It looks like he’s fit in with the personalities. He’s accomplished a lot as a player in this league. We’re looking forward to him contributing in a big way to the offense. The biggest thing that will pay dividends is the type of teammate he is and how he loves the game of football. Guys who prepare like that and practice like that, they find a way to make a big impact. We all want touchdown catches, but I like the other things. The touchdowns will be a byproduct of the kind of guy he is.
On G Justin McCray:
You have to love the guy. He’s a guy who gives you everything he has. He’s very diligent. He’s a tough guy. I pointed out a play the other day where there’s a diagram in the playbook and a real play when the ball is snapped. He just finds a way to be productive. It may not be the prettiest thing you’ve ever seen, but he’s always blocking people and giving good effort. He’s great to work with. You love to see players like that have success.
On TE Marcedes Lewis:
I like his approach to the game a lot. Angelichio has done a great job with the guys in his room. All of those guys have contributed. It’s a good group. Lewis doesn’t seem like a guy who has all the answers. He’s eager. He’s embraced the system and the scheme. He has really good hands and really good size. He understands coverages well.
Defensive coordinator Mike Pettine
On inside linebacker’s responsibilities to know the defense:
Usually we put it on them if they can handle it. So it’s by player. Blake Martinez seems to me a guy who can handle a lot, getting live reps of certain calls and practicing the trouble spots that the MIKE linebacker can get us out of it. We want to learn the defense first and circle back to where we can tweak things and change it. … It’s a process and it does take time. It’s not just him. It’s something all the backers have to learn it.
On defensive coordinators who throw everything at offenses in preseason:
I’ve been that coordinator who’s done a lot. You always assess what you need. We’re at the point, with playing young players, we didn’t want to disguise things with scheme. We want to see who could play and win their one-on-one matchup. We didn’t want to tip the hand too much when we get to the regular season and what we’re playing. It wasn’t an elaborate game plan. It’s for those young guys – keep it simple for them. You try to declutter things for them.
On balancing vanilla looks versus needing reps with the scheme in the preseason:
We’ll walk a fine line. We’re not going to put it all out there, personnel groupings. You have to strike a balance. What we have on the ready sheet is expanded this week. I don’t know how much of it will get called.
On his excitement to work with Clay Matthews and Nick Perry:
Looking forward to that day. I ask the trainer every morning to see if the timetable has changed (on Perry). In my history, I’ve been fortunate to coach guys like that who do different things. Anything we can do that’s easy for us and difficult for them, whether that’s switching guys or moving them in or out. Having those hybrid guys is helpful. … What we’re asking (Perry) to do and what he’s done here. In today’s football, it’s so much sub-defense now. A lot of it is just rushing the passer and that’s what he’s built his career on. He’s been around in the walkthroughs. I think the mental part will be fine. It’s just getting the physical part right.
On CB Josh Jackson:
I think Family Night helped. For a lot of our guys, the jitters were gone and Josh falls in that category. He showed flashes of what he can do. He’s been very productive in practice. He’s not a guy who is afraid to do different things. People categorized him as an off-corner, but he’s shown us he’s a quick study and we believe he can play multiple positions for us.
Special-teams coordinator Ron Zook
On if he’d like to see CB Jaire Alexander return some punts if he plays:
Yes. I’d love to get him back there and get him some returns.
On getting young players opportunities:
Brian (Gutekunst) and Coach have to look at everything. We don’t know who’s going to be here and who’s not going to be here. You just try to get guys as many reps as we can. Just like the long snappers, we need to get Zach (Triner) more reps this week.
On the long snapping competition:
The big thing is consistency in punt and field goal. Being able to protect in the punt, every snap is critiqued pretty heavily. Where is it at, where are the laces. All the things you can look at in a snap, you look at it. Their thing is protection – accuracy and protection. It’s not even the speed of the snap. Protection is No. 1 and accuracy is No. 2. If you’re counting on your center to cover, you have other issues.