The Packers put in an extra long day today to lay out the game plan for Sunday's matchup with the Seattle Seahawks. Mike McCarthy will go long again on Thursday because he's giving the players and staff Christmas Day off. Instead of a walk through in the gym on Saturday, the normal day before a game routine, the team will spend a few minutes on the practice field before kicking it off in the Lambeau Field finale at noon on Sunday. For the second straight week, the team is extremely thin at defensive line. Johnny Jolly did not practice with a sore knee and Ryan Pickett didn't work because of his pulled hamstring. McCarthy indicated today Pickett had a setback even with limited snaps last week against the Steelers. Also on the Wednesday injury report was Nick Barnett who did not work with a sore knee, Charles Woodson didn't practice because of a shoulder injury. Nick Collins was limited with a sore calf, Cullen Jenkins was limited with a quadricep injury. Brandon Underwood was able to fully participate with a sore hip and Jeremy Thompson has already been ruled out because of a neck stinger suffered at practice two weeks ago.
Aaron Rodgers had an interesting tale today. The Packers played the Seahawks last year in Seattle and he said at one point during the game, defensive lineman Daryl Tapp actually bit him in the upper arm. Rodgers said it happened fast, felt like a bee sting and when he realized what was going on, there was Tapp with his trap clenched on his arm. Because he was wearing a long sleeved undershirt, Rodgers said Tapp didn't clench hard enough to break the skin.
We also visited via conference call with Matt Hasselbeck. It was good to hear from the Pack's 6th round draft pick in 1998 and Brett Favre's understudy for three years before he was dealt to the Seahawks. It's been a rough year in Seattle, they're 5-9 and ravaged by injury. Hasselbeck even missed a couple of games with a broken rib. Matt also talked fondly of his days in Green Bay saying it was never a challenge to prepare each week and never get the chance to play because of Favre's iron man streak. He enjoyed his teammates and even considered signing a long term deal with Green Bay to eventually suceed Favre. Now he's glad he didn't. He said he'd still be riding the bench. It's worked out OK for Hasselbeck, a couple of Pro Bowls, and NFC Championship and a trip, albeit a losing one to the Super Bowl.