PITTSBURGH – Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy is “looking for good news tomorrow.”
That was the most optimistic view the Packers could take from a 24-19 loss that was in all ways meaningless except for a knee injury star wide receiver Jordy Nelson sustained in the first quarter. As the Packers left Heinz Field on Sunday, the question on every Packers fan’s lips was: Will Nelson play again this season?
“I get where you’re going,” McCarthy said to a reporter’s probe about a preliminary diagnosis, “but I’m not trying to beat someone to be first out there. I’m hoping for good news tomorrow.
“Jordy’s injury, I’m in the position of listening to all of the information until we get back to Green Bay, and do all of the scans. Jordy is a key member of our team on the field and off the field. Jordy is a great player. We’re looking for good news tomorrow.”
Nelson fell to the ground untouched after catching an 8-yard pass from Aaron Rodgers at the Steelers 17-yard line on the Packers’ opening drive of the game. He limped from the field but didn’t appear to limp a few minutes later when he walked from the Packers’ bench toward the team’s field tunnel.
“Good day of football. Tough day of football. Lot of injuries, for both teams. Couple of guys going for IVs. Those are things you have to push through,” McCarthy said.
T.J. Lang and Scott Tolzien were being evaluated for concussions. Damarious Randall and Adrian Hubbard each went to the locker room to receive fluids, on what was a hot day in Pittsburgh.
“Field position and penalties are things we have to learn from. A hot day like this is definitely something we can draw from. Hydration, we hit our target there. We’ll definitely grow from (this game),” McCarthy said.
Tackle Don Barclay started at left tackle in place of the injured David Bakhtiari. He had moments of difficulty in a game in which the Steelers sacked Packers quarterbacks six times.
“Don Barclay, that’s exactly what he needed. He needed to play a lot. I know there are some plays that didn’t go well,” McCarthy said.
Barclay is in a comeback attempt from a season lost to ACL surgery. He’s still wearing a brace. Sunday’s game was no doubt a test to determine where he is in his recovery.
Undrafted rookie cornerback LaDarius Gunter posted another impressive effort. He was credited with three passes-defensed.
“He’s always scrapping for the ball. He took a step today,” McCarthy said of Gunter.
Randall, the Packers’ first-round draft pick, was in his preseason debut and posted an interception and a pass-defensed.
“We’re only halfway through the preseason. Field position is something that really swung on us today. That’s something we need to look at. Going into the third week, we need to get some order,” McCarthy said.
As they left Heinz Field, what the Packers wanted most was good news on their star receiver.
Watch: Game Highlights
Photos: Best photos from Packers-Steelers