Huddle Up: Rodgers eyes long career

A look at national stories involving the Packers and stories about their opponents

Stu Courtney
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Each week, Press-Gazette Media will look at national stories involving the Packers as well as stories about their opponents this season:

Packers: In a national cover story this week, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, 31, told Sports Illustrated that he hopes to be able to keep playing “at a high level” into his 40s, thanks to a combination of “nutrition and flexibility.”

Packers: Wide receiver James Jones tells Jenny Vrentas of the Monday Morning Quarterback on that he hopes to finish his NFL career in Green Bay.  "I tell Mike McCarthy and Ted Thompson that I don’t know why they let me go in the first place," Jones said.

Seahawks: Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell responded to criticism of his play-calling from Marshawn Lynch’s mother, saying, “I’m glad we have passionate fans.” As Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times reports, Bevell noted that the popularity of the Madden video game has everyone thinking they know how to call plays.

49ers: The schedule-makers did the 49ers no favors this week: After having played on Monday night, San Francisco must trek 3,000 miles to Pittsburgh for a game that will start Sunday at 10 a.m. Pacific time. But Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that 49ers coach Jim Tomsula is taking it in stride, saying, “That’s just the facts of it. That’s where it is. That’s where we go.”

Rams: Rams linebacker James Laurinaitis needs only 11 tackles Sunday against Washington to surpass the franchise record held by Merlin Olsen. Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch relates this story and also one about the time some Rams teammates filled Laurinaitis’ car with crickets.

Chargers: Former Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o has evolved into an every-down player for the Chargers, writes Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune. Te’o finally is healthy after suffering a broken right foot two years ago and a broken left foot last year.

Panthers: Carolina linebacker Luke Kuechly’s status for Sunday’s game against Houston remains in doubt as he goes through one more stage of the concussion protocol before seeing an independent neurologist. Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer reports that Kuechly wants to play, but coach Ron Rivera said the Panthers will be “smart about it.”

Lions: Quarterback Matthew Stafford insists he still trusts wide receiver Calvin Johnson, despite targeting Megatron just four times in Sunday’s loss to the Chargers. Carlos Monarrez of the Detroit Free Press writes that neglecting a talent such as Johnson “is roughly tantamount to someone inviting Jay Z and Beyonce to a party and then ignoring them.”

Vikings: Running back Adrian Peterson, in his first regular-season game in a year, got only 10 carries Monday in Minnesota’s 20-3 loss at San Francisco. Four of those came out of the shotgun and produced only seven yards. But as Matt Vensel of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports, Peterson expressed faith in offensive coordinator Norv Turner and confidence that he’ll become more comfortable in the shotgun.

Bears: Outside linebacker Pernell McPhee’s status for Sunday’s game against the Cardinals is in question after he didn’t practice Thursday, Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune reports. McPhee was listed as having a knee injury in addition to the wrist issue that limited him in practice the day before.

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