Packers Daily Links: Shields Added To Injury Report

Rookie cornerback Sam Shields reported a strange pain in his knee that limited him at practice on Wednesday. That and more in today's Daily Links...

Cornerback Sam Shields reported a strange pain in his knee and didn't practice much, if at all, on Wednesday. "Shields said [team doctor Pat] McKenzie did stability tests on the knee and found it to be in good shape," according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "Shields may undergo an MRI to see if there's a hidden problem, but he insisted there is no way he'll miss the game against the Chicago Bears." Shields indicated that he probably won't be returning kicks this week in any case.

Bears head coach Lovie Smith said, in not so many words, that he'll be playing his starters on Sunday and he's playing to win. "When it was suggested to Smith in a conference call with reporters Wednesday that the Eagles' loss changed the dynamic of Packers-Bears, the coach disagreed," reports Gary D'Amato of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Former Packer and current National Football Post columnist Matt Bowen–who works in Chicago–says Smith needs to play his starters, not just pay lip service to it. "Lovie will talk this week about his starters playing the entire game," writes Bowen. "Will that happen? Maybe, but that all depends on the flow of the game, the hitting and what type of pass protection the Bears can put up vs. Clay Matthews and the Packers. Because Green Bay needs this game. They have to get it done if they want a ticket to the post-season tournament. It is the most crucial game of the season from their perspective."

Packers head coach Mike McCarthy doesn't care what the Bears do. McCarthy called worrying about what the Bears are going to do is a polluted mindset. “That’s what I told the team today. Leave the pollution outside the doors,” McCarthy is quoted as saying by Jason Wilde of ESPNWisconsin. “We’re focused on beating whoever comes out that gate on Sunday. They are going to have white jerseys on and we’re going after them. That’s our mindset." No surprise there. You can only do what you can control.

How the Packers plan to prepare for Bears kick return specialist Devin Hester is a hot topic of conversation. Hester made the Pro Bowl, has the NFL career record for kick return touchdowns and may set the NFL single-season record for punt return average. “It’s just one of those deals where we have to contain him, give him a very slim chance to return the ball. Keep the ball very close to the sideline if not out of bounds,” Jarrett Bush is quoted as saying by Wilde. “He got us in Chicago on one. We can’t let it happen again. Like I said, he’s going to get a very slim opportunity to return the ball.” Similar articles are penned by Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette and Tom Silverstein of the Journal Sentinel.

Aaron Rodgers has played like a Pro Bowler this season says Dan Pompei of the National Football Post. "Nothing against Michael Vick, Matt Ryan or Drew Brees, but Rodgers’ performance in 2010 compares well with any quarterback in the NFC," writes Pompei. "Rodgers’ passer rating of 101.9 is second in the conference only to Vick’s 103.6. His average per attempt of 8.3 is second only to Vick’s 8.4. He has thrown more passes of 25 yards or more — 37 — than anyone." Most Packers fans would say he's preaching to the choir.

Being left out of the Pro Bowl hasn't affected Rodgers, thinks Mike Vandermause of Press-Gazette. "If Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers felt snubbed after getting left off the Pro Bowl invitation list this week, he didn’t show it on Wednesday in the locker room," writes Vandermause. Rodgers thought the Packers' record had something to do with it.

B.J. Raji also commented on being left off the Pro Bowl roster. “I guess it’s by reputation,” Raji is quoted as saying by Demovsky. “I can go back to when we were voting, and we were in the room asking the guys who should we pick? So it’s probably one of those things that happened. Obviously, they weren’t going off numbers. I don’t know what they were going off of, but congratulations to him and whoever else made it.” And Raji is exactly right. Reputation influences voting more than anything.

John Kuhn has reached folk hero status in Green Bay says Chris Jenkins of the Associated Press. "Nobody will mistake Kuhn for a feature back; he hasn’t rushed for more than 50 yards in a game," writes Jenkins. "But he seems to be at his best near the goal line; he has six touchdowns this season, four rushing and two receiving." Good read.

Back to Rodgers, he was named a candidate for several awards for his performance last week. "Rodgers was named the NFC’s offensive player of the week for the second time this month and is a candidate for the FedEx Air player of the week," writes Bill Huber of Packer Report.

The annual Fan Fest won't be held this upcoming offseason reports Lori Nickel of the Journal Sentinel. "Lagging ticket sales as well as some uncertainty of next season led the Packers to put the event on hold for 2011, with the intent of bringing it back in 2012," writes Nickel. That's a shame, but the Packers have to do what's in their own best interests. They said making it an every other year event was a possibility, which could make sense.

McCarthy commented on Bears running back Matt Forte yesterday.

This column on what I think is on the importance of the Packers-Bears game by Mike Hart of Packer Plus was rambling and confusing, making it hard to believe the Journal Sentinel would put it behind a paywall. I think it was attempting to poke fun at football cliches, although I couldn't really tell. The title tells us that the Packers have to play full 60 minutes against the Bears. Ummm, okay.

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Comments (36)

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Tommyboy's picture

December 30, 2010 at 09:54 am

Man,I hope Shields is okay. He's the Packers rookie of the year and we need him to keep the backside strong.

Also, I sincerely hope McCarthy doesn't dare Hester to return one. McCarthy likes to take some very direct shots against opponent's strengths...I hope this time he kicks the ball out of bounds before ever giving the ball to Hester. If we can't stop a backup right guard....

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CSS's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:35 am

In all seriousness, I would be shocked if a single coach opted to punt to Hester starting Sunday and lasting throughout whatever type of playoff run they make. He's altered the outcome of at least 3 games.

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nerdmann's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:31 am

Sounds like qi and blood stagnation. Easily treatable. If it's more of a stabbing pain and worse at night, probably more blood stagnation. Either way, it's easy to treat.

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davyjones's picture

December 30, 2010 at 09:55 am

So are we back to Jordy returning kicks?
Are there other possiblities?

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Tommyboy's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:09 am

I always wondered why Swain didn't get a shot.

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davyjones's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:18 am

He is the first guy I thought of as well. I always thought he had a kinda Welker like jitterbugness to him.

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nerdmann's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:32 am

Wouldn't mind seeing what Swain could do. Lee's not bad either. He could break one. Wouldn't mind seeing Tramon replaced on PR either.

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al's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:58 am

who cares shields has looked scared lately, as long as nelson can field them cleanly and not fumble were okay, besides the bears punter has fallen off, field position shouldnt be to bad for us

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 30, 2010 at 01:13 pm

Can't blame the kid for hitting the wall..The Pack is putting a lot on the shoulders of an undrafted rookie...here we are in January.

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Bad Knees's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:06 am

Is there any way we can trade for the Bears Medical, training and special teams staff?

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:13 am

Well..since you started it again, Il ask this question again:
How do NFL teams evaluate their training staffs?

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Bad Knees's picture

December 30, 2010 at 12:21 pm

There are probably 32 different methods. However looking at the number of players placed on IR is a solid number and a place to start and compare. And, the information is readily available.

It is difficult to believe that Packers management is happy with the number of players they have placed on IR.

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CSS's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:43 pm

Where there's almost zero correlation as to what the injury was, where it was obtained (surface), what the player was doing at the time (position, was he engaged with another player, etc.), and what pre-existing injuries the player was dealing with.

The correlation coefficient is a big, fat 'zero'. You got nothing.

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PackerAaron's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:22 am

You mean the Bears staff that presided over the same type of injury outbreak only last year? Wait, you mean it's cyclical and has nothing to do with the staff? Great, thanks for proving my point.

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Bad Knees's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:22 am

Good grief you are right. The Bears had a lot of injured reserve players last year, way more than their normal. Still had 2 fewer than the Packers.

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nerdmann's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:36 am

We've had it two out of the last three years, although with different strength and conditioning staffs. I believed they shitcanned the last group after the '08 fiasco.
Nice to see how well Capers is doing with all the injuries. With Sanders we were screwed.
What kind of food do the Packers offer their players? They need to be heavy on the foundational yin essence. Liver yin supports sinews, such as ligaments and tendons. Kidney supports bones. Spleen supports muscle. I'm perfectly willing to consult of course.

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Bad Knees's picture

December 30, 2010 at 12:07 pm

Just looking at the number of players placed on IR by team for 2009 the Packers were worse than average. The Detroit Lions Placed 24 on IR in 2009. Minnesota only had one (unbelievable). Minne is having another outstanding/healthy year in 2010, well below the league average.

Point being injuries like wins and losses are not just random or bad/good luck, or cyclical. Some of the organizations are doing something that reduces serious injuries.

If you were the President of the Packers wouldn't you like to know how to successfully reduce serious player injuries?

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 30, 2010 at 01:11 pm

And would it be backed by research? If you have that...email me we'll put a proposal together for every team in the league.

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CSS's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:40 pm

So, in 07' when the Packers had among the least players across the NFL with the same identical training staff you would have given them an appreciable bump in salary? I would imagine the other 31 medical/training staff across the league were attending seminars to find out just what innovative techniques they were employing?

Flash forward 2 years and those techniques must be antiquated.

Seriously, you've turned this meme into a paradoy and it has zero traction. Zilch...

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CSS's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:45 pm

"Minne having another excellent year in 2010."

No, you're only looking at IR. Look at missed starts by key players; Peterson, Rice, Hutchinson, Sullivan, every DB on the roster, Harvin, Favre. The list goes on.

Vikings have had a horrible year. You're not even looking at this with a critical eye, just an agenda.

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Ruppert's picture

December 30, 2010 at 10:45 am

Good Lord, who gave Favre a Sam Shields voodoo doll?

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al's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:00 am

if TT doesnt do something about our return game this offseason he needs a head exam. Williams is only going to be more valuable to us and shields seems like he has hit his cieling, find a viable return man in the draft for both KR/PR please!!

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Brooklyn81's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:02 am

What about Starks doing some returning.

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davyjones's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:26 am

Taryn--

What do YOU think of James Starks?

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Tommyboy's picture

December 30, 2010 at 12:56 pm

Nice, Davy.

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nerdmann's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:33 am

I like how you think dude. He's definitely got the speed. But they'd be more likely to go with Lee, being that he's also a DB. Wouldn't take an extra roster space.

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Tony Wilson's picture

December 30, 2010 at 11:14 am

Lovie is talking a big game about starting everyone for the whole game. He'd be insane to do that. If he does, I hope Cutler takes an extra tough beating, not that I don't hope for that anyway.

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 30, 2010 at 02:48 pm

There's one big difference between the Packers and Bears...Packer players and fans think they have a chance to win it all. Bear fans and players know the Bears can't win it all. Not taking anything away from Chicago- they've had a year...but......

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FITZCORE1252's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:35 pm

I'm not buying Lovie playing his guys for a full game and neither is Vegas (10 point dogs)...
http://www.sportsinteraction.com/sportsbook/index.cfm?section=events&amp...

Though, I kinda hope they do.

GBP 4 LIFE

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FITZCORE1252's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:36 pm

Oh, don't anybody get in trouble on that site!

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:39 pm

...instead go to Fitz's...no trouble there...only pleasure and expensive credit card bills.

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FITZCORE1252's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:58 pm

8-)

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FITZCORE1252's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:40 pm

Hey Brian, how do you feel about the Mike Hart piece? Don't beat around the bush either. lol

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Brian Carriveau's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:41 pm

In the words of the Big Lebowski, "What in God's name are you blathering about?"

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FITZCORE1252's picture

December 30, 2010 at 03:56 pm

Haha

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thepretzelhead's picture

December 31, 2010 at 12:12 am

His priority is straight.

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