McCarthy: Shields, Bakhtiari 'getting better'

Ryan Wood
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Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy spoke with the media for about 10 minutes Wednesday morning. Here are some highlights.

Green Bay Packers tackle David Bakhtiari (69) grabs his helmet after getting injured in the fourth quarter against Oakland Raiders at the Coliseum.

On Sam Shields' health status: Getting better. Sam is going to do some work today at practice.

On David Bakhtiari's health status: Getting better. Hope David is going to do some work today at practice.

On Bryan Bulaga's health status: Bryan feels like he’s getting better too. I talk to him Monday or Tuesday. It’s going to take the full week for those guys.

On adjusting without starting OTs: Absolutely. I think anytime you put together a game plan, you look at matchups through the course of the game. Sometimes you might get a little more optimistic, sometimes you might get more pessimistic. Helping the tackles was definitely the case in Arizona. We obviously didn’t get that done, and you saw what happened.

On Bridgewater: I think he’s definitely one of the young, ascending quarterbacks in the league. I was very impressed with him, you could see him live the first time we played those guys last year. You can tell he’s played a lot of football. He has great control at the line of scrimmage. His cadence, his command is definitely ahead of a second-year guy. He looks comfortable in Norv (Turner’s) system.

On experience with big games in NFC North matchups: I don’t know. I’m not really looking at the past. We get to walk through a great past each and every day when we walk through the doors. We’re focused on the Minnesota Vikings. This is a great opportunity for us to win a division championship.

On importance of division games: You can make the case that division games really count as two wins. I think that’s the common goal for any NFL team as they get ready for the season. This was a game we looked at when the schedule came out in the spring that, hey, this is probably a game that’s going to mean a lot. And it is.

On a feel for where his team is at mentally going into this game: Well, we worked Monday. I felt like we did everything we needed to do Monday, coming off Sunday the Arizona experience. We had really quality time as far as the Minnesota preparation, particularly the film study. We’re a little more ahead than we would be on a typical Wednesday. I feel like our guys are locked in.

On sticking with Davante Adams: We do play-time reports as a coaching staff, and obviously the week of preparation affects how the outlook is each week. As far as who plays, why they play and how much they play is part of the execution for that week.

On tight ends: It’s a long season. You go through the ebbs and flows of it. Game planning has changed some in the past four weeks. Richard, his opportunities have probably not been as much as early in the season when he was exclusively the only tight end on the field. We’ve been going with two backs and certain things. That’s probably the biggest change.

On Eddie Lacy’s ups and downs: Eddie, James, it’s important. Any time you have players, the quarterback touches the ball each and every down. Running backs are hopefully touching it 35 times a game. So Eddie is a big part of the game preparation.

On preparing to defend Adrian Peterson: We played very good run defense that day in Minnesota. I think we all realize Adrian will get his touches come Sunday night. That’s what we’re preparing for. Obviously, stopping the run is of high importance.

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