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McCarthy schedules odd camp for odd early regular season

Nov. 6, 2013
 
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Mike McCarthy decided on a varied training-camp schedule to help prepare his team for a varied early season schedule. The Packers coach  has the Packers practicing at 8:15 a.m. for the first two weeks of camp, moving to 7 p.m. practices for the most part the next two weeks, and then to more of a regular-season, late-morning practice the final two weeks of camp. He did that because the team’s first four games fall far out of the normal rhythm of an NFL regular-season schedule. The Packers’ opener against San Francisco is on a Sunday at Lambeau Field, but then they play the following Thursday night (against Chicago at home), have 11 days until their next game (a Monday night at Seattle) and then play the following Sunday (at home against New Orleans). “I wanted to make sure our players were challenged from the fact of the regularity is going to be a little up and down to start the season,” McCarthy said Thursday after the team’s final offseason practice. “Then we end up playing every seven days after that. I wanted that reflected in the training camp, so that was part of the reason why we went with morning practice, night practice and afternoon practices. Frankly, playing four Thursday night preseason games is very beneficial just because it  gives us two full weeks of being on an in-season schedule, where a normal training-camp season you only have one week where you can introduce the in-season schedule to the team.” The NFL's collective bargaining agreement signed last year limits teams to one practice a day, so there are no more two-a-days.  

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