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McCarthy: Packers healthier than last year

Nov. 6, 2013
 
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Packers coach Mike McCarthy declared his team healthier than last year heading into the playoffs. That is the biggest difference between the two teams following the regular season. McCarthy said the path the Packers have to take in the playoffs is different. Last year the Packers needed to win three playoff games on the road to advance to the Super Bowl. This year they need to win two homes games to get to the championship game. McCarthy also said he believes the Packers are carrying some momentum into the playoffs, similar to last year. In each of the past two seasons the Packers took a two-game winning streak into the playoffs. In other highlights from McCarthy’s press conference today: *The Packers aren’t necessarily locked in to their starters on the offensive line. They will give Chad Clifton every opportunity to show he is ready at left tackle but won’t hesitate to put Marshall Newhouse in if necessary. *In his time as Packers coach, he doesn’t feel the Packers ever pushed injured players into playing sooner than they needed to be out on the field. *The most important part of the open week, or bye week, is that it gives players a chance to get healthy. Coaches will always emphasize little things during the open week, while players will focus on their bodies and health. *Defensive coordinator Dom Capers spent a good 60 minutes with the defense today reviewing the good and not so good things as a means to self-scout. That's another benefit of the open week. *It was good to get outside to practice today. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers was very sharp. *In terms of preparation for their divisional round opponent, the Packers look at the percentages of the No. 4, 5 and 6 seeds advancing. A huge part of what they work on is fundamentals. *He’s well aware the playoffs are a sudden death situation, so the team has to play their best football. *He thinks the world of offensive coordinator. He wouldn’t speak about rumors that Philbin will interview for the Chiefs head coaching job. *The overtime rule in the playoffs won't impact how they will call the game. *He wouldn’t address injuries, or why center Scott Wells didn’t participate in practice today. *Greg Jennings looked better today. He thought he looked better last week. There’s no waste of motion in his stride. He feels good where he is. He feels good about where the Packers will be as a team healthwise heading into the playoffs.  * Ryan Grant’s production lately clearly has been based on more opportunities.

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