GREEN BAY — The Packers’ coordinators and offensive assistant coaches spoke with the media on Thursday afternoon. Here’s a summary of their key comments:
Defensive coordinator Dom Capers
On Chicago’s offense:
They look much different. I think they’re a much improved offense. All you have to do is look at their last two games. A couple weeks ago against Tennessee, they really had a great comeback. They’ve had really good opportunities to win their last two football games. Barkley came into the game (at Lambeau Field) and he’s doing a nice job for them. The combination of the running game with Howard, Barkley is doing a good job with his play-action game. He’s only been sacked three times.
On former Packers guard Josh Sitton:
Josh looks like Josh always did. He’s a savvy veteran guy who knows all the tricks of the trade. He does an excellent job with his hands. He keeps people in front of him. He’s good at picking up stunts. He’s made them better on the offensive line. I think their offensive line is playing much better than when we were getting ready to play them the first time. We have a lot of respect for Josh.
Special-teams coordinator Ron Zook
On the conditions affecting the kicking game:
Strong wind. Obviously the conditions are what they are. The ball is cold. A lot of times it isn’t going to travel as far. It doesn’t bother Mason. He’s done it. Jake is from Buffalo so he’s kicked in the elements as well. Both teams are going to have to deal with it.
On how ILB Jordan Tripp could help on special teams:
Having played Seattle and watching them. I think he’s a guy who can help us. He has a lot of ability. He’s sudden. He can run. He has a great attitude. He was up in my office last night. He’s already on his iPad studying. He has to learn the terminology, but that won’t be an issue.
Offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett
On cold weather games:
It’s part of the preparation. I think the No. 1 thing is we have the opportunity to practice in those type of conditions. You go back to how you train. You want to be fundamentally sound. As far as the mental part of it, that’s part of football.
Associate head coach/offense Tom Clements
On Aaron Rodgers’ performance in face of injuries:
He prepares well. He knows what to expect going into a game. He plays the game all week mentally, so when the game comes he’s already thought through things. He plays through injury. That’s a testament to him getting through it during the week and then being able to fight through it physically.
On Chicago’s defense:
Their whole defense is coordinated very well. They’re very strong upfront. They get a good rush. The guys back there are playing well. They’re playing very well as a defense entirely.
Offensive line coach James Campen
On T.J. Lang playing through foot injury:
That’s T.J. He cares deeply about his team. He wants to win. He’ll do everything he can to play. He made it through fine. He was in some pain I’m sure. He’s played a lot of football and knows how to work around things. Having T.J. back for the game was a plus, obviously.
On whether he played with sleeves or no sleeves in cold weather:
I was a no-sleeve except for one time. Detroit, here, was a cold game. All the linemen ran out without sleeves and then went back into the locker room. There was only one guy who didn’t have sleeves on and that was Sterling Sharpe.
Tight ends coach Brian Angelichio
On Jared Cook’s injury:
I wouldn’t say scare but certainly we were hoping to get him out there in the second half. …He’s been good. In the reps we’ve given him, just trying to see how he feels. He’s been progressing. Certainly on Saturday we’ll make a decision on where he’s at.
On Richard Rodgers’ catch against Seattle:
Rich, in my opinion, really good hands. He did a good job on Wagner. He has strong hands. He wasn’t worried about where Wright was. It was the fundamentals that Coach McCarthy preaches.
Quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt
On getting Rodgers prepared without practice:
Mental reps. That’s the big part; watching every drill we did. Getting him in tune with the game plan and landmarks. Just going over those in the meetings and making sure he’s on top of it.
On Brett Hundley’s work this week:
He’s been sharp on everything we’ve asked him to do this week. … (If he played) you wouldn’t give him the full boat that you would give Aaron. As a young player, I’d always would want the base plays that I have the most reps on.
Receivers coach Luke Getsy
On Davante Adams’ game against Chicago:
Him sticking to his plan. Believing in himself and being aggressive. When he got the ball in his hand, he was relentless. We preach every day and you’ve seen that with him. … The last time we played the Bears, Porter traveled with Jordy. It’s going to be different every week.
On execution on Jeff Janis’ end-arounds:
It’s something we practiced through the offseason. The moment struck again. Mike say that and dialed it up against Seattle with Brett in the game. Jeff ran it better than he did against Houston, and Jordy and Davante had nice blocks.
On Jordy Nelson’s signaling for where Rodgers should throw ball on touchdown against Seahawks:
I did that when I was like 10. I told my buddy to throw it here. It was just an instinctual football player. Two guys who have done that a bunch of times. He put a hand and Aaron recognized it and put it in the spot. Jordy did a good job of being patient. I think that relationship with Jordy’s unique instincts that make it special.
Running backs coach Ben Sirmans
On James Starks’ health after accident:
I’ve talked to him. I talked to him yesterday and after the accident. For him, prior to that, he’s in a good place. His biggest thing is he wants to win. He was really disappointed that this has happened to him.
On Ty Montgomery officially becoming a running back:
He’s made a good transition. The biggest thing he’s brought besides his athleticism is he has an understanding of the pass game that the other guys don’t. It helps make him more valuable. He’s very, very eager to learn and ask a lot of questions. He still asks the most questions.