GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Packers won’t have to issue an injury report until Wednesday, according to NFL rules, so coach Mike McCarthy wasn’t about to start handing out injury information willy-nilly on Sunday afternoon.
After coughing his way through his post-game press conference following Saturday night’s 24-10 NFC Wild Card victory over Minnesota, McCarthy’s only real update was on his own condition.
“(I) feel great,” he said. “Won the game yesterday.”
But while tight end Jermichael Finley left with what was initially announced as cramping and later described as a hamstring injury, and wide receiver Jordy Nelson limped off the field late in the game, McCarthy hinted that everyone should be ready to go for next Saturday night’s NFC Divisional Playoff Game against the San Francisco 49ers.
McCarthy said the medical staff was “still going through process of seeing a number of players” as of Sunday afternoon, and trotted out his favorite, “we’ll have all that information for you on Wednesday” line from there.
But what he added next was the good news: “But there’s nothing of serious nature, is what I was told before I came in here.”
Finley said after that game that there was no doubt he would be “good to go” against the 49ers, and Nelson downplayed the fact that he’d limped off the field late.
“I feel great,” Nelson said. Asked what he did to his leg late in the game, Nelson replied, “Nothing.”
Nelson, who missed three games with a hamstring injury and then aggravated his knee during last Sunday’s regular-season finale at Minnesota, played just 19 snaps by unofficial count in Saturday night’s game, catching three passes for 51 yards.
Nelson was asked after the game if he was being limited in his playing time.
“If you want to talk game plan, you have to talk to the coaches. We’re good,” he said. “We’re all here, everyone’s feeling good, and we’re just trying to get guys on the field to make plays.”
But in truth, McCarthy was limiting Nelson’s playing time. He went with a lot of three-receiver sets with Greg Jennings, Randall Cobb and James Jones as the receivers.
“It just kind of unfolded that way, just with the groups we went with, starting off with what we call the ‘Zebra’ (package) – the three wide receiver, one tight end, one back set,” McCarthy explained. “That’s just the way it sorted out. (With) Jordy coming back off of injury, I don't want to call it a rep count, but it wouldn’t have been smart for him to try to go out and play 60 plays.”
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