Thompson likes what he's seen from current roster

Weston Hodkiewicz
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Packers general manager Ted Thompson spoke to the media prior to Tuesday's practice. Here are some highlights:

Packers general manager Ted Thompson watches training camp practice at Ray Nitschke Field.

Opening statement

It's going to be a couple weeks until we're playing a real game. We have a side benefit of playing Reggie McKenzie, John Dorsey and John Schneider's teams.

On playing his former GMs:

I don't think it's a distraction. Before the game, you can give everybody a hug and wish them well. The winner is happy. The loser is dejected but comforted by the win.

On having no roster moves since claiming Gerrard Sheppard:

Sometimes you keep adding salt to the mix, it gets too salty. Sometimes you have to say let's try to figure this out. When we claimed Sheppard, we had a couple receivers with a bump or two. You don't want to get too light at those positions.

On the flags:

It's the way it is. The league has deemed it appropriate to cut back on some of the contact outside. A point of interest means from the league office pay attention to it and follow it pretty strict. I think the players will adjust to it.

On 10-man practice squads:

It's fine with me. It's above our pay grade. I think most people in my position think it would be natural to say that's correct but I don't get to vote.

On Thursday games changing logistics of cut down:

Not a lot. We've done this before. Logistics are logistics. Everything has to be sped up a little bit.

On watching games from sideline:

I think quite a bit. You can see the glassiness of the eyes or the non-glassiness of the eyes. I enjoy watching the fellas I haven't been around to watch them play the game. Even participating on the sideline and cheering other teammates on.

On the 2013 draft:

It's good. We don't know look at it that way. We love the 30 year guys as much as we love the 20 year old guys. I don't put it in a box like that. Drafting is not an exact science. I'd like to be good at it most of the time, but you have to understand sometimes it's not going to work.

On Year 1 to Year 2 jump from players who contribute right away:

You're always looking for growth. Certainly, you anticipate some growth spurts even though they participate early. There's nothing like experience.

On being more inclined to keep a player you drafted vs undrafted:

Maybe a smidge. But we better keep the best ones.

On undrafted free agents vs veterans:

Yeah, you have a body of work. You have more of that. It's different now because draft moves a little bit.

On bringing in UFAs for pre-draft visits:

We bring a lot of players in, almost exclusively guys who weren't brought into the combine. We're able to do a medical physical. It's a part of the equation with all these young guys.

On Elliott's play Saturday:

I've played in the league and played in a lot of preseason games. I played in the second half when competition drops pretty quick. It doesn't mean the young man hasn't done good stuff. You just have to weigh all this out.

On how practice squad helps quality of the NFL:

There's not much hiding going on in the NFL. It's a pretty competitive bunch we're going against. We value the ability to develop players on the practice squad just like it's meant to be. There are some people who might treat it more like these guys are just practice guys and it doesn't count. Our practice-squad guys are told at the beginning their job is to get ready to play and help us win. It maybe this week, it may be 10 weeks from now but their job is to help us win games. If someone gets dinged, we will usually fill the spot with one of the practice squad players.

On evaluating the No. 2s in preseason:

It's natural, too. Coaches are obviously they kind of turn the switch and get ready for the season. From the talent evaluator's standpoint, we're still in the middle of this stuff. We have important decisions to make. He's big into the personnel part and is appreciative of the work the scouts are doing. We've been together long enough to understand each other's point of view.

On JC Tretter at center:

We liked him a lot in college. We thought he could play. We did some workouts with him at center, sometimes that's not an exact science because you have two or three guys at a pro day. He has the makeup of being a player – where he'll wind up playing you never know? But so far he looks OK.

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