Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers waits to throw during NFL football
minicamp, Tuesday, June 16, 2015, in Green Bay, Wis.
GREEN BAY — Packers
defensive tackle Mike Daniels is looking for any edge to beat an
head coach is sharing some tips that Daniels may not have necessarily
received before this offseason.
Coach Mike McCarthy
is relinquishing offensive play-calling duties this year to spend more
time working with the defense and special teams.
Rodgers has even gone so far as to joke that McCarthy is sharing trade
secrets with the defense.
Not quite, but any
little tidbit helps. McCarthy likes to keep things fresh for his team
and coaching staff, after arriving in Green Bay in 2006.
"Well, a big
focus for our whole team this year is just to raise the football IQ,
so we've had coaches spend more time together, offense and
defense," McCarthy said Tuesday after the first day of the
Packers' three-day mandatory minicamp.
Bay Packers' Julius Peppers pauses during NFL football minicamp,
Tuesday, June 16, 2015, in Green Bay, Wis.
This is still a work
in progress for McCarthy. He appears to be spending more time away
from the offense during open practices, but he doesn't have a routine
"I'm still kind
of working through job responsibility. I've got a lot of ideas that
won't be applied until training camp and in-season," McCarthy
said. "But this is probably the busiest offseason for me
personally, certainly since my first year here."
Daniels, the Packers'
high-energy leader on the line, has seen a difference. The defense
already has veteran Dom Capers as its coordinator; now McCarthy is
offering more insights to that side of the ball.
"I know being a
defensive player, we're getting the offensive perspective. We're
getting in their minds, pre-snap during a play," Daniels said
about McCarthy's input.
One time this
offseason when players were watching film, McCarthy pointed out
differences in blocking schemes on back-to-back plays. The schemes
looked exactly the same, but the offensive line, McCarthy noted, was
trying to accomplish different goals on each play.
Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy, right, talks to Clay
Matthews during NFL football minicamp, Tuesday, June 16, 2015,
in Green Bay, Wis.
McCarthy pointed out, I think (it was) the guard (with) how he opened
up his hips ... it's so subtle," Daniels said. "But if you
can get that subtle difference, you'll be able to read a play that
Not to say that
McCarthy is completely divesting himself of the offense. This is his
scheme, after all, even if Tom Clements is taking over calling plays.
It sure helps that Rodgers, 31, is in the prime of his career.
Receiver Randall Cobb
said he hasn't really noticed that much of a difference on the field.
"He's more of
the head man overseeing everything else. I'm working with the same
guys on a day-to-day basis," Cobb said.
The bigger adjustment
is in meeting rooms, Cobb said. Besides Clements' promotion from
offensive coordinator to associate head coach, McCarthy also promoted
receivers coach Edgar Bennett to offensive coordinator.
Alex Van Pelt will add receivers coach to his responsibilities. Those
position groups now meet in the same room.
what in meetings," Cobb said. "It's just a difference that
we're still working out the kinks to. I think it's been good so far
just being able to be on the same page so far with the quarterback and
understand what they're thinking and what they're seeing when they're
draft pick Ty Montgomery didn't participate in his first workout until
Thursday because the receiver was finishing school at Stanford. The
workout Tuesday was just his third of the offseason, though McCarthy
likes what he has seen so far. Playing catch-up, Montgomery said he
had three goals. "It was to play fast, play with confidence ...
and then to finish every play. I still fell behind," he said. ...
The Packers have an offsite team-bonding event on Wednesday and will
not practice. It's a tradition under McCarthy. "The opportunity
that our players will have tomorrow, they'll be in groups of four,
maybe five, and there'll be guys that ride in a (golf) cart with Aaron
Rodgers or with someone they've never really had a conversation
with," McCarthy said. "This is about culture, it's about
developing the bonding between your players and coaches and support
staff. So it's very important."