In his weekly appearance on The Pat McAfee Show, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers took the time to speak on the passing of college football coaching legend Mike Leach, who died on Monday night. As Rodgers mentioned, his former backup quarterback Graham Harrell, now a college football coach himself, played for Leach at Texas Tech, as did former Packers outside linebackers coach Mike Smith.
When discussing Leach’s impact on the sport, this is what he had to say:
“[Rodgers and California] played against him in college in 2004 in a bowl game. I just remember marveling at the offensive line splits and then the tempo and the vertical pass game and the short pass game. Talking to Graham [Harrell] over the years, the simplicity of it, I think, was the genius that they were able to run a number of different plays, quickly. Concepts that they knew, that they practiced, that they can run against any different coverage. And Mike [Leach], you can watch him on the sidelines, he had like a little 4x6 index card that he was calling plays on sometimes. I just think he knew the system so well and had such a good feel for the game.”
Later on in the show, Rodgers was asked about his injuries have progressed in his time away from football during the bye week. He responded, “Look, nobody wants a Week 14 bye, nobody does, but it always feels good coming back after the bye whether you’re 21 or however old I am now,” and advocated for the league going back to a 16-game schedule with two bye weeks instead of just one.
Rodgers, who has been playing with a broken thumb, was recorded throwing a football by the Packers’ social media team today. The thumb, noticeably, did not have tape wrapped around it, as we had seen in games before. Rodgers is also battling through an undisclosed rib injury, which occurred against the Philadelphia Eagles a few weeks ago.
“The thumb is doing a lot better. The ribs are doing better, too,” said the reigning back-to-back MVP, “I was able to finally start getting some sleep.” Green Bay will have extended rest going into Monday Night Football against the Los Angeles Rams this week.