GREEN BAY -- Mike McCarthy said Davante Adams was slated to take another step in the concussion protocol on Wednesday, but making progress hasn't changed the receiver's emotions over the situation he's dealing with.
"He's pissed off, he’s irritated, he’s angry," McCarthy said of Green Bay's leading pass catcher. "He wants to be out there. He’s our best perimeter player. He was knocked out of the game at a critical time in the game and now he can’t play. It’s only natural. He’s irritated that he’s in this spot."
McCarthy had no further comment on Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis' suspension for the illegal hit on Adams being reduced to one game.
Unless Adams can clear the concussion protocol in a week's time for the third time in the last two seasons, quarterback Brett Hundley will be without his favorite target for Saturday night's game vs. Minnesota. Adams was far and away Green Bay's most productive receiver during Hundley's seven previous starts in 2017.
Minnesota's top combination is fully intact, of course, with quarterback Case Keenum and receiver Adam Thielen, who was elected to his first Pro Bowl this week.
A while back this season, Keenum shook the tag of "game manager" that had followed him a bit earlier in his career. McCarthy commented on how dynamic his game has become, including a specific 20-yard scramble against the Packers in the teams' first meeting this season that showed his awareness and instincts under pressure.
"That's exactly why you don’t put labels on people," McCarthy said of Keenum, who is having by far his best season, now with his third different team. Keenum has completed 68 percent of his passes with 20 touchdowns and just seven interceptions for a 98.9 passer rating this season.
"He's been given an opportunity. He's had a number of experiences, and I'm sure he’s drawn from them all to prepare for this opportunity in Minnesota. He's done a hell of a job. He has really good tape. He makes plays, ducks under sacks."
Thielen will be returning to the stadium where he posted 200-plus yards in a Christmas-time game against the Packers a year ago.
The Packers are in unfamiliar territory, playing at this stage of the season without any postseason hopes. McCarthy said the team meeting room is "definitely not chatty, that's for sure," but on a short week there's not much time to wallow in disappointment.
"We’re full swing into getting ready for Minnesota," McCarthy said. "Everybody understands we’re playing for something different right now."