Video/Transcript: Mike McCarthy after Thursday night win.

Head coach Mike McCarthy after 31-17 win over Tennessee

OPENING STATEMENT

Good evening. Well, I felt that was a good start for our football team. Really what we wanted to accomplish tonight as a football team, establish our play style, and secondly was just trying to create as many opportunities as we possibly could for our players. It was important for everyone to play in the game tonight. We accomplished that. I think that the tape is going to be really, really good to learn from. There’s going to be a lot of good things on the tape, there’s a lot of things that we didn’t quite finish. It’s clearly a – I would call it a stepping-stone game where we had production, we had positive things, we had things we clearly needed to do better, and it was preseason game No. 1. I thought the team got off to a good, solid start today with the performance. A lot of penalties, I think that’s really the landscape with the new rules that are being emphasized in the preseason. It’s a little bit of the same for the officials, it’s a learning process and we’ll continue to work through it. I am anxious to see the tape. I think it will be a great teaching tape tomorrow for our players. With that I’ll take your questions.

ON BRETT HUNDLEY’S NIGHT

I thought Brett Hundley did some really good things. Started with the really big throw there. He was productive, his decision-making was sound. Clearly his tempo was the best of the three quarterbacks. We had the two sacks – that was the negative of his time in there. But I thought he played well. I thought all three quarterbacks contributed especially for their first time out. All three guys made big plays and you have to be able to make big plays. DeShone’s Kizer big throw on second-and-30. Tim Boyle had some big throws here in the fourth quarter. There’s definitely things – we burned our timeouts, two on communication, so there are definitely things to learn from. Tempo was a little up and down there. A lot of good tape. This is going to be good tape and had some good situations that we had to talk through on the sidelines. I feel good about the amount of work that we were able to get done tonight.

ON DESHONE KIZER

I thought he did some good things. He really didn’t get a chance to do the no-huddle just because of really the personnel group and what we had prepared for, so we just stayed away from what they were doing in that particular personnel. We had some very long drives. You have to give those quarterbacks, especially Kizer and Tim, a lot of credit because when you get into those series, herky-jerky, back and forth, penalty here, penalty there, because a big part of getting your offense going is establishing that rhythm, timing, and flow. And getting guys in and out of the huddle, trying to stay on time, playing with a good time clock, and when you get a lot of breaks in action like that with the penalties, that really challenges your mechanics and I thought both those guys managed that very well.

ON PLAYERS FIRST-TIME IN GAME SITUATIONS WITH NEW COACHES

I thought it was good, I’m glad we have four games. We’re going to try a little different format next week on offense. I was talking with Mike Pettine briefly. There’s some things that he’ll clean up. It was preseason for everybody. This is preseason game No. 1 for everybody.

ON EQUANIMEOUS ST. BROWN

I think he’s off to a good start. I think he’s done a lot of really good things. He’s taken advantage of his opportunities. Very pleased with him and the rest of the young receivers.

ON AARON RODGERS’ MESSAGE TO THE YOUNG WIDE RECEIVERS

I mean really that stuff, talking to Aaron briefly after that, when you speak with emotion and frustration, that’s really about as far as it goes. This is a football team, it’s growing and trying to get better each and every day. At the end of the day, the evaluation of every player on our team, it’s a very thorough process and I’m very pleased with a lot of things our young receivers are doing.

ON WHETHER THE YOUNG WIDE RECEIVERS RESPONDED TO RODGERS’ MESSAGE IN TONIGHT’S GAME

I think they just took another step from what they’ve been doing in practice. You look at those young guys the way they’re getting off the ball is consistent, and I thought they carried that over to the field tonight. There’s going to be some plays they wish they’ve made but the first part of the route running – I thought they did a lot of some really good things.

ON THE RUNNING STYLE OF JOEL BOUAGNON

I thought both those young guys did a hell of a job tonight. Once again, when you’re running the ball against an eight-man front and a two-backs, and a heavy seven-man front one back, I think you have to be patient, stay the course, trust the combination in the zone blocks from the guys up front. I thought they both did a really good job.

ON TAKING A CONSERVATIVE DEFENSIVE APPROACH

Well, I think so. There’s conversations that go on, obviously, going into these games. The one thing about – we’ve had a big point with our team, really from the first day of training camp – and it was reiterated today in the team meeting, is ‘mindset over scheme.’ Scheme is not a crutch. This was not a scheme-game. This was about making sure we get our guys, and really Tennessee took the same approach. This is an evaluation time. And going back to ’09, I know Dom Capers blitzed a lot, but coming out of the defense we were in before Dom got here, it was a defense that didn’t blitz a lot. So, you have to learn how to blitz. Pressure defense – there’s a different tempo and speed to it, and that’s something you evaluate. Obviously, we’ve been in a pressure defense for quite some time, so it’s not as much of a concern where we are today as we were back then.

ON JK SCOTT’S PUNTS

Well, he probably wanted a little more on it. It was a drop kick. He’s been so impressive in practice. I mean really the 52-yarder – that’s what he does every day. I’ve been so impressed with him in practice, and it was good to see him kick live out here. Extremely talented young man, very consistent.

ON USING SCOTT ON KICKOFFS TOO

Yeah, absolutely, absolutely.

ON BEING ENCOURAGED THAT WE WERE NOT PENALIZED UNDER THE NEW HELMET-RULE

No, I really can’t view it that way. We had a really good group of officials here last week, and the fact that they spent a ton of time communicating with our players. We’ve always had them in the meetings, and I’ve always felt that it’s gone well. We had a whole crew for the first time, and I think that’s really beneficial. In talking with the officials before the game today, there’s some calls that they’re still working through. I mean the definition of it, exactly what it looks like - because it’s like anything, you practice, you walk through it, you do it at practice speed, but now to get it accomplished at game speed – they’re in the same boat. This is new for them and for them to call these particular penalties in live action is something that’s going to take the preseason. We coach the fundamentals, and really the message today to our players was to trust the training, really trust your fundamentals. I don’t really want to think about it. We’ve gone through the safety emphasis and why we’re doing it, and it really just takes you back to healthy fundamentals, which we’ve always done here.

ON GETTING AN EXTENDED LOOK AT BYRON BELL TONIGHT

No, Byron earned that opportunity. We went back and forth. Really, something happened, so Byron went in front of Jason Spriggs. We’ll evaluate the tape and go from there.

ON REGGIE GILBERT’S PERFORMANCE

Reggie Gilbert’s a heck of a football player. Just so proud of him when you watch a young man come out of the practice squad, change his body. He just does it right. He’s very disciplined. I haven’t seen the statistics, but I would think he had some really good numbers tonight.

ON THE RETURN GAME

I can’t really give you a clean evaluation. I was more interested in the spacing – really how are they lining their guys up opposed to ours. Obviously, they had some production on the kickoff return, so I think like everybody in the league, you’ve got to get ready for the season and seeing how the other guys are doing it is important. I think we’ll learn as much from one another throughout the preseason with these new rules on kickoff.

ON TIM BOYLE

Well, I mean he’s definitely got talent. There’s no denying that. You could see that right away when Tim got here. Just try to give him some opportunities to make some plays, and I thought he did a really good job of staying with what he’s comfortable doing. I mean he was able to hit a number of backside routes and went to the one-on-one side. It was a little cleaner for him than the three-man side, so I thought he did some really nice things.

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