GREEN BAY -- The competition between Joe Callahan and rookie Taysom Hill for the No. 3 quarterback job is "a fun one to watch" with two preseason games left, Head Coach Mike McCarthy said Tuesday.
Undrafted from BYU, Hill has had the better of it statistically thus far, with 10 completions in 16 attempts for 118 yards and a touchdown (105.7 passer rating), plus 52 yards rushing and a TD, in the first two games. Callahan's numbers (11-19, 103 yards, 72.9 rating) don't stand out nearly as much, though it's worth noting Callahan -- the preseason star a year ago as an undrafted Division III prospect -- has entered the games sooner and probably faced better defensive units.
Both quarterbacks could be very limited in this week's preseason game at Denver, with starter Aaron Rodgers expected to get his most extensive playing time, and backup Brett Hundley also likely to get his share of work.
The fourth preseason game next week will be another chance for both Callahan and Hill to show what they've got. Both are capable of making plays on the move, and thus far Hill has made more of them in game action.
"It's an excellent battle," McCarthy said prior to Tuesday's practice. "Joe had some mistakes and obviously Hill made some big plays (at Washington). Those are the things you look for, guys taking advantage of their limited opportunities, with our focus on giving Brett as much as we possibly can."
Tuesday's practice is slated for 3:15 p.m. to coincide with McCarthy's new in-season Wednesday schedule. The first day of the work week in preparing for a regular-season Sunday opponent, Wednesdays will now include more game-plan installation meetings and walk-throughs in the morning and mid-day before hitting the practice field later.
McCarthy didn't give any specific points of emphasis for this week -- such as tackling and ball-security a week ago, both areas in which he felt the Packers made strides -- but the team's two open practices this week are important because they're the last two real "training camp-type" workouts.
Playing time for the Denver game will be determined by the team's health as it goes through the week.
"We have a lot of players in limited mode," McCarthy said of the injury update. "A number of guys we'll look at early and see how they progress through practice. There's some question just what our numbers are for today’s practice. We’ll fight through that."
Defensive lineman Dean Lowry, who injured his knee at Washington, will not practice on Tuesday, but McCarthy said the injury is not a long-term concern.
Also, rookie linebacker Vince Biegel will not be cleared to practice or play this week. McCarthy said the fact that Biegel's foot surgery was due to a re-occurrence of a college injury is a factor in his timeline.
"There's a threshold or two more that the medical staff wants to make sure he’s clear of, because a setback is always something you want to avoid," McCarthy said. "We haven’t had any setbakcs, but it's a matter of where he is in the progress of his rehab."