It was a Victory Monday for the Green Bay Packers.
And also a Medical Monday.
The Packers quickly are running out of players at linebacker and receiver. During Sunday’s win at Baltimore, outside linebacker Nick Perry reportedly sustained a broken foot and receivers Randall Cobb and James Jones sustained knee injuries.
Cobb will be out for “multiple weeks,” coach Mike McCarthy said, while Jones has a chance to play on Sunday against Cleveland. McCarthy said Perry has a foot injury but would not elaborate or confirm the report, other than to say Perry “does not have a chance to play” this week.
“I actually had a friend of mine call me this morning and say, ‘Hey, man, your team looks a lot like that 2010 team,’” McCarthy said. “And I said, ‘This team is nothing like the 2010 team.’ Then when I got to work and saw the injury report, I wanted to call him back. I didn’t think it was that bad.”
The news on Perry was a surprise, even to McCarthy. He was injured on his sack/strip of Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco late in the first half. He missed the first three series of the second half but was on the field in the fourth quarter. According to the official play count provided by the league, Perry played 34 defensive snaps – 52 percent.
“I went in there, though. I got in there,” Perry told reporters after the game. “It was just up to me and how I felt. I don’t want to push it, I don’t want to overdo it. You don’t want to make it worse. Ultimately, it’s just how I feel. We have guys who can do the job. I just looked at it as a time to sit back and let some of the younger guys get in there, put some stripes on their head and go. I think we need everybody right now knowing that Clay (Matthews) is down. We’re not looking forward to any more injuries, that’s for sure. It’s just preventative. I’ll be back next week.”
The injuries leave the Packers without their starting outside linebacker tandem of Clay Matthews (broken thumb) and Perry. The last men standing are Mike Neal and rookies Andy Mulumba and Nate Palmer.
“Andy was impactful in the game,” McCarthy said. “I think he was at 30-plus plays (39, actually). I feel good about the impact and he definitely made a step yesterday. Palmer did some good things on defense. Special teams, there’s some things that he could do better. But it was good to get those two guys out there in the rotation. I thought Kevin Greene did a good job of rolling those guys in as far as the number of reps and trying to coordinate that with Mike Neal and Nick Perry. It’s definitely something that we have to build off of because their responsibility will greatly increase going into this week.”
The injuries also leave the Packers without two of their three top receivers. That left just Jordy Nelson and Jarrett Boykin for the second half of the Ravens game.
McCarthy and his staff have been talking throughout the day about whether a player or players have to be added to the roster. As of Monday evening, the only move was bringing back Reggie Dunn to the practice squad. Myles White is the only other receiver on the practice squad; seventh-rounders Charles Johnson (signed with Cleveland this weekend) and Kevin Dorsey (injured reserve) are not options.
“That’s what the wishbone is for, right?” McCarthy said. “We’re going to run our offense. That’s important. We have players that you feature, and then we have players that have roles. Our quarterback runs a system the way it’s supposed to be run, he throws the ball where it’s supposed to go. The people that are in there need to get open in the passing game and we need to keep running it and running it with the attitude with the finish that we have been. That part, our offense won’t look any different. There will just be some numbers that are changed out there.”
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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at email@example.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.