Montgomery will miss 5th straight game
Green Bay Packers receiver Ty Montgomery is expected to miss his fifth consecutive game with the high-ankle sprain he aggravated last week in practice, coach Mike McCarthy confirmed Wednesday.
Montgomery was one of three players who didn’t practice Tuesday. He’d returned on a limited basis for two weeks before reinjuring his ankle last Thursday. His absence likely means a larger role for second-year receiver Jeff Janis both on offense and kickoff returns.
“Ty is not going to make it,” McCarthy said. “We haven't done the (injury designations) yet, but Ty Montgomery will not be available.”
Meanwhile, McCarthy left the door open for center Corey Linsley (ankle), who didn’t practice Tuesday but was given a chance to participate in Wednesday’s final run-through. McCarthy said his work in practice will determine his availability for Thursday’s game against the Chicago Bears.
The Packers still feel good about their situation at center even if Linsley can’t go. Former fourth-round pick JC Tretter played 65 snaps in Sunday’s 30-13 win over Minnesota after Linsley exited in the first quarter and didn’t return.
Tretter was slated to be the team’s starting center in 2014 before a knee injury landed him on temporary injured reserve for the first half of the season. He returned midseason, but Linsley played well enough that the Packers chose to stick with the rookie for the remainder of the year.
“He was one of the offensive game-ball winners for his performance in Minnesota,” McCarthy said. “I think any time you lose a center or a quarterback, those guys handle the football on every single play, and for the player caller, for Tom Clements to be able to just keep calling the ball and for Aaron (Rodgers) to be able to get in and out of the plays that he needed to and not even blink, I think it says a lot about JC Tretter and his preparation and our ability just to stay the course.”
Here are some other highlights from McCarthy’s news conference:
On defensive line depth
Our defensive line has done an excellent job. That’s where it all starts, as we know. You just go back to the Viking game. Staying healthy is always the No. 1 factor. It’s an excellent group. It’s a group that obviously has maturity and veteran players and a good mix of younger players. We’re going to need to get them big tomorrow night.
On how Tuesday’s practice went and the plan for Wednesday
Excellent practice yesterday. I was very pleased with the video. Today’s practice will be identical to a Saturday practice.
On Datone Jones’ new spot
Datone has been getting some more opportunities both inside as far as the three- and five-technique and playing some outside elephant opportunities. It’s giving him some play-making opportunities. He’s had some big plays, but he also hasn't been consistent enough. That’s where he needs to take the next step. He had the two sacks last week. It’s tough when you move from one position group to another, in a sense. He’s spending time with both the elephants and some with the d-line. We want to see him clean some things up and get that consistency where it needs to be and I think his production will even increase more.
On Mason Crosby bouncing back
Well, I mean Mason is very steady in his personality. I think he definitely is a very talented kicker. His work ethic and he’s the same guy every day. I think sometimes you have a moment where you kind of drop off and miss an opportunity. Just kind of an analogy — when he plays golf with you, it’s very difficult for him to follow all of your bad shots — but I think it helps prepare him for these kind of times.
On offensive line depth
This is definitely our deepest group. I think that was clearly evident in training camp. You never have enough good football players and you never have enough big guys, so that’s what one thing I do know that’s consistent each and every year in the NFL. It starts up front, and we’re fortunate to have a good offensive and defensive line with depth.
On Brett Favre’s final two seasons in Green Bay
Well, I mean, Brett Favre’s a generational player, no doubt about it. I don’t know if I’d go so far as reinventing himself because he was always at the top of the game or near the top of the game. He was obviously a little older in our second time around, but his ability to run the full scope of the offense still existed and frankly it existed in the three years that he didn’t play here. There’s very few players that are able to retire on their own teams, and those are the great ones — and he’s definitely one of them.
On Eddie Lacy
Well, Eddie’s definitely an energy player. There’s no doubt about it. That was evident since the first time he played for us in his rookie season. He carries the big bang and has really good feet and extends plays, and that’s what it’s all about. I know our run blocking unit, particularly the offensive linemen, love it. You can see the way they push the pile and so forth. But yeah, his play style brings a lot of energy to our football team.