Mike McCarthy Presser 8/13: Pumping the Brakes on Harris

Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Packers' "starting" running back DuJuan Harris may not start this Saturday.

Today's practice was a rough one for the coaches. Not only did Mike McCarthy make the team restart a period, but progress for the backup quarterbacks continues to stagnate. In particular, B.J. Coleman's reps have been reduced to pseudo-scout team. McCarthy remains optimistic about Vince Young, however. "When a guy like Vince Young has the unique ability to win games, you need to get him into your system." McCarthy conceded that it's "not realistic" for Young to jump in and directly compete this late in the process. The fact that Young is receiving praise from the staff, not to mention more reps than Coleman, indicates that his changes of stealing the backup job are strong.

While Greg Van Roten's performance in the spring left a lot of be desired, he's picked up his play of late. McCarthy has taken notice, "Van Roten is getting better. Started, rough, but gotten better each week." At this point, the Packers do not have a better, more versatile reserve interior lineman. While Lane Taylor amongst others has made a push of late, a roster spot for Van Roten is all but assured now.

A day after lavishing praise on "starting" running back DuJuan Harris, McCarthy went into expectations management mode by stating that the running back may not be ready for full contact. Harris was listed as limited today, and given the proximity to preseason game number two, he may be given a week to ease in. Eddie Lacy was also limited in practice Tuesday. While McCarthy didn't elaborate, both backs might be DNPs Saturday in St. Louis.

Randall Cobb may have returned to a normal workload, but he's still struggling with a biceps injury. According to the head coach, Cobb may be dealing with this injury "for a while." However, McCarthy was quick to point out that if the team felt his health was in jeopardy, he wouldn't practice. Given the Packers' conservative approach towards injuries, Cobb too is unlikely to play against the Rams.

McCarthy did provide some good news on the injury front; slot corner Casey Hayward's injury has progressed to the point where the team is discussing his return. According to McCarthy, the medical staff will have a "better understanding next week." That's as good an indication from the head coach yet that Hayward will be back in the lineup soon.

Finally, McCarthy discussed a disturbing report that ambulances were called to Ryan Pickett's house. While the exact nature of the incident wasn't declared, McCarthy explained that Pickett "is where he needs to be right not" and "everything will be ok." Pickett echoed the coach's sentiments through his twitter account, so hopefully there won't be any need for further update.

That's all from McCarthy. Make sure to return to Acme Packing Company tomorrow for more news and analysis from Packers training camp.

Jason Hirschhorn covers the Green Bay Packers for Acme Packing Co. He has previously written for Lombardi Ave, College Hoops Net, LiveBall Sports, and the List Universe. He is also currently a senior writer for Beats Per Minute, an indie-music webzine. Follow him on Twitter: @JBHirschhorn

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