McCarthy: Team Is 'Absolutely' Ready
QB Aaron Rodgers (Mary Langenfeld/USP)
QB Aaron Rodgers (Mary Langenfeld/USP)
packwriter2002@yahoo.com
Posted Sep 2, 2011


With the preseason out of the way, the Packers host the Saints in a battle of the last two Super Bowl champions next Thursday night at Lambeau Field.

Ready or not, here comes the regular season.

Barely a month after the start of training camp and after four preseason games in which Aaron Rodgers played about a full game's worth of possessions, the Super Bowl XLV-champion Green Bay Packers completed their preseason on Thursday night by beating the Kansas City Chiefs, 20-19. A week from now, the stakes will be much, much higher with a season-opening, made-for-TV showdown against the Super Bowl XLIV-champion New Orleans Saints.

"Absolutely, we'll be ready," coach Mike McCarthy said. "Yeah, we're ready."

Even with a lockout that robbed him of his beloved offseason program, McCarthy barely deviated from his typical preseason formula. A week after playing the first half at Indianapolis, the starters played one series against the Chiefs before giving way to dozens of players fighting for their professional livelihoods.

The starters — or, more accurately, the starters who suited up — were sharp during their cameo appearance. The No. 1 defense allowed one first down before undrafted rookie linebacker Vic So'oto, who likely solidified a roster spot, sacked Matt Cassel on third down to force a punt. The offense promptly drove 56 yards in eight plays for a touchdown, even with all of Rodgers' top pass-catching weapons on the sideline. On the first snap, Ryan Grant blew through a huge hole on the right side for a 23-yard gain. Later, on third-and-9, Rodgers sidestepped reigning AFC sacks champion Tamba Hali and hit undrafted rookie receiver Tori Gurley for 12 yards and a first down at the 8. One play later, Rodgers found tight end Tom Crabtree for a touchdown.

For more from Bill’s analysis for Fox Sports, click here.


Agree or disagree?: Discuss hot Packers topics in our, free forums. Leave Bill a question in the subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum.


Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/packerreport.



Related Stories
Undrafted So'oto Sacks Roster Spot
 -by PackerReport.com  Sep 1, 2011
Breaking Down the Remaining Roster Battles
 -by PackerReport.com  Sep 2, 2011
Backup Plan Carries Packers in Finale
 -by PackerReport.com  Sep 1, 2011

MAGAZINE COVERAGE
Subscribe today and get a full year of Packer Report Magazine with an annual Total Access Pass.
Sign Up Today!

Upgrade Now!
Free Email Newsletter
Don't miss any news or features from PackerReport.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to have our newest articles emailed to you on a daily or weekly basis.
Click here for a list of all Team Newsletters.

Add Topics to My HotList
Get free email alerts with news about your favorite topics. Click link to add to My HotList.
Football > Green Bay
[View My HotList]