Notebook: McCarthy critical of vicious hits on Dupre, Randall

Ryan Wood
Packers News
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Green Bay Packers wide receiver Malachi Dupre (19) is stretchered off the field in the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday, August 10, 2017, at Lambeau Field.

GREEN BAY - After reviewing the film of Thursday's exhibition opener against Philadelphia, the Green Bay Packers submitted clips of concussion-inducing hits to cornerback Damarious Randall and wide receiver Malachi Dupre to the league office for further review.

Coach Mike McCarthy said Friday he believes both hits were illegal.

“Saw the video,” McCarthy said. “They’re definitely both plays we turned into the league. That’s a process that you go through each and every game. So I’m sure we’ll get an evaluation from the league on that with the emphasis (on player safety). Obviously, those two hits fit in that category.

“There’s emphasis each and every year about how can we make the league better. Obviously, player safety is at the forefront of that, and when you see things like those two hits last night, they’re definitely of concern. You don’t want to see your players ever get injured, specifically if it’s not within the climate of what the league’s looking for as far as the proper way to block or so forth.”

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Randall absorbed a blindside block from wide receiver Bryce Treggs on a running play during the first quarter. He appeared woozy on the sideline and was diagnosed with a concussion before the end of the game.

Dupre was taken off the field on a stretcher in the second half after safety Tre Sullivan slammed him to the turf following a short reception on the right side. Dupre had movement and feeling in all of his extremities but was taken to a hospital Thursday night for further evaluation.

“Malachi Dupre and actually Damarious Randall both were here today,” McCarthy said. “Good spirits, both doing good and they’re both in the concussion protocol.”

Cornerback Raysean Pringle also was evaluated for a concussion during Thursday’s game after several players landed on top of him during a scramble for a loose football. Eagles wide receiver Greg Ward muffed a punt late in the second half, and Pringle wound up on the bottom of a pile after he slipped trying to recover the fumble.

The medical staff ultimately determined that Pringle did not suffer a concussion. Pringle said the injury resembled more of a stinger.

“It really happened when I was down and someone jumped on me,” Pringle said. “I’m not out for anything. … I’m not concussed. I am perfectly fine. They have a new rule that I had to leave the game. I didn’t want to leave the game but I had to.”

The Packers don’t yet have a timeline for when backup center Don Barclay can return from an ankle injury, but McCarthy suggested it might not have been as severe as initially believed. Barclay left during the third quarter Thursday.

“We’re actually still trying to get our hands around it some,” McCarthy said. “Not as bad as we initially thought it was on the field. It is an ankle injury. Don’t have any timeline or anything like that for Don.”

Meanwhile, tight end Richard Rodgers said he’s unsure if he’ll need a club covering his right hand to protect an injured ring finger that kept him out of Thursday’s game. But either way, he expects to be a full participant in Sunday’s closed practice.

Rodgers' best catch of camp was his most painful. In a red-zone rep Tuesday, safety Morgan Burnett blanketed Rodgers in the end zone. He was able to get a finger on quarterback Brett Hundley’s pass, knocking it in the air away from Burnett and catching the deflection for a touchdown.

Rodgers, whose right ring finger was wrapped Friday in the Packers' locker room, said if he needs a club it won’t be his first time in his career.

“It’s definitely possible,” Rodgers said. “I’ll have to figure that out with the trainers when we practice. I played with a cast in college my last couple games because I had surgery on my thumb. So that’s probably the closest I’ve ever came to it.”

Time to go: When the Packers released defensive tackle Letroy Guion last week, there was no comment from the organization or general manager Ted Thompson.

On Friday, McCarthy offered his thoughts on the decision to cut Guion.

"The decision to release Letroy, it was obviously done with taking into account everything that is going on," McCarthy said. "But Letroy has a lot of love and respect in the locker room. Anytime one of your players goes through tough personal situations, you support them and try to work with him, but frankly, this time right now, Letroy’s focus needs to be on himself and getting things right personally. But yes, he was very well liked, he was a great teammate in the locker room and that definitely plays into it but those are decisions you have to make when you release a player like that. But he’s working on the right things right now."


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