From Week 4 of 1992 through the first eight games of 2013, only Brett Favre, Aaron Rodgers and Matt Flynn had started games at quarterback for the Green Bay Packers.
When the Packers visit the New York Giants on Sunday, Scott Tolzien will become the Packers’ third starting quarterback in as many weeks, coach Mike McCarthy announced after a 27-13 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Friday.
With Rodgers out with a broken collarbone, 33-year-old Seneca Wallace made his first start since Jan. 1, 2012. Wallace, however, lasted just one series after injuring his groin and was replaced by Tolzien, who was called up from the practice squad on Wednesday.
Tolzien completed 24-of-39 passes for 280 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions.
“We’re running plays he hasn’t even practiced yet,” McCarthy said of Tolzien, an undrafted free agent in 2011 out of Wisconsin who was released by the 49ers after their final cuts this summer.
“You have to be impressed with his game management,” McCarthy added. “You’re talking about a young man who hasn’t played not only in the game with us but hasn’t had a lot of snaps at practice. His work has been really confined to the opponent’s squads. This week he was able to get snaps with the first offense. I take that back, we do give the number three some reps with the number one offense sometimes. He’s had very limited work. As any quarterback would know or any player, when you have a chance to work the plan, obviously your preparation leads you to potentially a much better performance. But not only him not working the plan, he had to manage it. We didn’t just line up in one personnel group. We went out there to win the game, so he got us in and out of personnel groups, managed the runs. They challenged him, challenged the box. They did a good job against our run game in the second half, and Scott was able to take advantage of that. Like I said, you take away the interception, I don’t know if the young man could’ve played much better.”
Tolzien's one big blunder was an end zone interception intended for Jordy Nelson. A better ball would have produced a touchdown.
"Bottom line is we've got to just keep getting better," Tolzien said. "I think it's pretty simple. You start by looking at yourself in the mirror. You always do that. Certainly, there's a few plays you'd like to have back in the game. But I really appreciate the guys' help out there, rallying around me. And my coaches as well this week helped me prepare to be ready to go. I really appreciate these guys in this locker room. We've just got to keep getting better, bottom line."
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.