Each week, Press-Gazette Media willlook at national stories involving the Green Bay Packers as well as stories about their opponents this season:
Packers: Former Green Bay coach and general manager Mike Sherman, who led the Packers to five straight winning seasons from 2000-04, is coaching a high school football team in Cape Cod, writes Emily Kaplan of The MMQB. Sherman calls it “the hardest thing I’ve ever done.”
Packers: After calling an audible against the Chiefs, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was asked, “Which way?” by guard T.J. Lang. With time running out on the play clock, Rodgers yelled, “Right!” Not surprisingly, writes Mark Sandritter of SBNation.com, the running play lost two yards.
49ers: Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott issued a literal wake-up call to the struggling 49ers, reports Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News. “Guys! Wake up … wake up … It is time to wake up,” a grim-faced Lott said in a video pep talk to the team.
Rams: Rookie running back Todd Gurley gained only nine yards on six carries in his much-awaited NFL debut Sunday, but Joe Lyons of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that coach Jeff Fisher feels “he could’ve very well had 50 or 60 yards … it was that close. A block here, a press the hole here or a block there.”
Chargers: Melvin Gordon practically lived in the end zone at Wisconsin last season, leading the nation with 32 touchdowns. The rookie running back is eager for his first NFL TD, writes Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune: “Oh, yeah, I’m hungry to score,” said Gordon, who ranks 11th in the NFL with 190 yards rushing. “I feel like everyone has scored but me.”
Broncos: When asked about long throws, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning made a joking reference to the movie “Bad News Bears,” writes Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post. “You guys are getting so desperate here,” Manning told the media when asked about a pair of long passes Sunday. “I had like these big throws and it almost reminds me of “The Bad News Bears” when Buttermaker was trying to encourage his team when they’re really bad.”
Panthers: After being traded to Carolina, Jared Allen said he had nothing bad to say about his time in Chicago except that he wasn’t a fit as an outside linebacker in the Bears’ new 3-4 defense,” writes Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer. “I’m not a stand-up 3-4 guy,” Allen said. “I gave it the old college try.”
Lions: Although Matthew Stafford hasn’t proven himself to be a franchise quarterback, Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press writes that “he must immediately act like one in demanding dramatic philosophical changes in the Lions’ offensive strategy. If that brands him a prima donna, so be it.”
Vikings: Teddy Bridgewater will have the equivalent of a full season of NFL starts when he takes his first snap Sunday, and Jason Gonzalez of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the second-year quarterback is pleased with his development. “I think I’m making a ton of progress,” Bridgewater said as he prepares for his 16th NFL start. “There’s’ still room for improvement. … I’m going to continue to just try to play fast, be decisive in my decision making and stay aggressive.”
Bears: Tight end Martellus Bennett wasn’t pleased when he learned the NFL had fined him for his footwear, writes Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune. “I’m just (ticked) off at the NFL,” Bennett said. “They get mad because my cleats are too black, but they’re perfect for my feet.” Asked if he’d be willing to pay the fine every week so he can wear his cleats, Bennett said, “No, I’ve got a kid at home.”