Ted Thompson, the sizzler himself, took to the podium today to discuss some of the initial topics of the Green Bay Packers' training camp and preseason. Among those topics were the value of undrafted free agents, injuries, the backup QB position, and how he's really fired up about some players. Just kidding. He was basically catatonic, as usual. Here's what he had to say in his press conference, which was streamed live at Packers.com:
On undrafted players having more motivation: "There's incentive for all of them to be hungry, but don't know if there's any more for UDFA's. They're playing against other grown men who are equally as motivated."
On players like DuJuan Harris getting overlooked because of size: "We have certain parameters for different positions. You'd like to see ideal mesaurables like height, weight and bone density (note: WTF?) but everyone's different. We're not a moneyball team that goes strictly by the numbers. It's not an exact science."
On Vince Young: "Pleasant to be around. Really good team guy. Trying to learn as fast as he can. It's not perfect to only get a few weeks to look at him, but the dynamics of the game (presumably injuries and other players struggles) impact those kinds of things. Would have liked to brought him in earlier, but we don't lament the decision. Overall he looks fine."
On injuries and depth at WR: "Not worried any more than other positions. It's given young guys good opportunities and we're still very early in the process. Tyrone Walker and Myles White are also doing fine."
On Eddie Lacy being the guy they expected: "He's doing fine." (Sense a trend here?) "He has lots of pedigree and has worked hard since he's been here."
On injuries and depth at Tackle: "Opportunity for others to step up. Feels okay, but always a little anxious about the number of linemen you have going into the season. Overall, feels pretty good, even though you hate to have injuries."
On if the number of injuries are increasing: "Worked with medical staff to analyze things and the number of injuries (this year vs. previous) are about the same. During training camp before game start, it always seems like there's more than there are. We have more technology today to examine players and find things out which helps us allocate playing/practice time."
On veterans like Cobb playing through pain: "Typically, we'd want to be more conservative with guys before we get into regular season games."
On what team scouts are doing now: "Going through each team one-by-one, identifying strengths and weaknesses, evaluating young guys. Gives you a look at how a team will be overall, and shows us specific areas we'll want to focus on with our own guys."
On Johnny Jolly: He's "doing fine" (yep, seriously). "He's very much a football guy. Loves to play and practice. Some people are born with good instincts and he's one of them."
On the difficulty of evaluating injured players like Charles Johnson/Kevin Dorsey: "It's not going to be fair. Some guys get more reps because of injuries or rotations, but we'll give them as much opportunity as possible. We have a body of work in practice and film room, but that compared to actual game performance is not apples and apples."
On Ryan Longwell: Was a "Stone cold, ice cold kicker. Performed well in pressure situations. Good for him to be here."
On players retiring with old team: "They reach out to us and based on their contributions, we decide. With Longwell, we thought it was neat thing to do."
On if Longwell taught anything about the value of UDFA's: "We actually liked Ryan coming out of college, but we drafted a kicker pretty high already. Not sure if it taught us anything, but reaffirms the value of undrafted guys. I know everyone will write their articles on what cuts we'll make but it never turns out that way."
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- Which UDFAs Will Make the Packers: Preseason Week 2 Edition