Packers Coach Mike McCarthy talks about commitment organization has made to players’ overall health
GREEN BAY (WITI) — There are so many reasons why the Green Bay Packers will lament not winning that NFC Championship game in Seattle. Chief among them is that the team’s important players were on the field for the important matchups.
Although QB Aaron Rodgers was hampered with a calf injury at the end of the season, the Packers as a whole were remarkably healthy this season. That is a marked difference from recent years.
“I thought the changes we made last year, there’s definitely benefit, some of the things we did from a program standpoint, was definitely reflected in the health of our team,” Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy said.
“You know, this is something we’ve been working on, you know. really in the planning stages for a couple of years,” Packers GM Ted Thompson said.
In their ever-expanding effort to compete, the Packers opened a new training, teaching and nutrition addition late in the 2013 season.
“When I was a player — now I played in the 70s and 80s but I brown-bagged. You know, for what players have now is great,” Thompson said.
The coach saw its benefits in 2014.
“I’ve been around long enough to see a lot of great ideas that don’t get off on the right foot, that they fail and it’s because of the introduction, how it was explained, the impression of why your changing it and so forth because there’s going to be doubt any time you change. We’ve been successful with the old schedule, so I just wanted to make sure that everything was lined up and ready to go,” McCarthy said.
As he does every year, McCarthy conducted exit interviews with all the team’s players after the season’s last game. In this case, that disappointing NFC Championship game defeat. There was a healthy respect for the organization’s commitment to health.
“I thought the feedback from our veterans was the best that we ever had. I mean, it’s once again the changes. We talked about the changes we’ve made because I look at the exit interviews as an opportunity for me to improve and your veteran players are the ones that have to give you that,” McCarthy said.
Following Green Bay’s NFC Championship game defeat in Seattle, McCarthy’s younger brother Joe passed away of a heart attack at the age of 47. On Wednesday, January 28th, during his season-ending press conference in Green Bay, Mike McCarthy says he’s in good health and ready to move forward.
The Packers can only hope that the changes they’ve made to improve overall health will continue to show up again next season.