Notebook: Green's Study Pays Off

New defensive lineman Howard Green spent several hours working with Mike Trgovac on Friday and Saturday; plus, more news from the Monday after the 9-0 win over the Jets.

Howard Green reportedly was released by the New York Jets because he had beefed up to 375 pounds over their bye week.

Defensive line coach Mike Trgovac doesn't know and doesn't care.

"Whatever he's at right now, he was moving fine out there," Trgovac said on Monday, a day after Green and the rest of Trgovac's unit did yeomen's work in a 9-0 upset victory over the Jets.

After Green's long trip to Green Bay after being claimed off waivers from the Jets last week, he spent the week practically strapped to Trgovac's hip. They spent a couple of hours meeting one-on-one on Thursday, a couple more hours on Friday afternoon and the plane trip to New York to get Green up to speed on the playbook. Trgovac let Green loose for dinner on Saturday night, then reconvened in the hotel lobby for a couple hours until the 9 p.m. team meeting.

"Dom (Capers, the defensive coordinator) asked me to give him a list of calls that he felt comfortable with and he did a great job," Trgovac said. "It wasn't a small amount. There was probably 20-some calls in there that we gave Dom. In the hotel, he probably got tired of walking and hitting chairs because we spent a lot of time together."

According to Trgovac, Green played 34 snaps. He had only one missed assignment — with that coming on an on-the-fly adjustment during the game.

Green had two tackles (one solo) and a big play early in the fourth quarter when he burst into the backfield on a stunt and screwed up a reverse when he hit LaDainian Tomlinson as he was about to hand it to Jerricho Cotchery. The play resulted in an 8-yard loss.

Chalk it up to what Green called "old-school football" — playing on feel and instinct.

"I came free and from playing football for nine years and even back to high school and college, if you come free, Coach will tell you, just stop, slow down and see what's going on," he said on Monday. "It just so happened that L.T. was running to me with the ball and I could see Cotchery coming on a reverse path. It worked out well."

With Green replacing the equally beefy Ryan Pickett, who has played in only nine snaps over the last four games because of a sprained ankle, the Packers held the Jets' vaunted one-two punch of veteran Tomlinson and powerful Shonn Green to a combined 22 carries for 76 yards.

"He's got size and that's what we needed in there," Trgovac said. "I thought Ted (Thompson) did a great job when that opportunity came available. He's a good kid. He really is a good guy. ... He was probably tired but he never complained one time. He's a pro. He knows what we were up against. I'm sure it didn't hurt that he was getting to go against the Jets."

Return relay

With Pat Lee already ruled out for Sunday night's game against Dallas because of an ankle injury, the Packers will need to find a kickoff returner.

The options, according to special teams coordinator Shawn Slocum, are going back to Jordy Nelson, using No. 3 running back Dimitri Nance or adding another job for starting cornerback and punt returner Tramon Williams.

Going to Nelson would be the obvious decision but he's got an expanded role on offense with Donald Driver missing the second half of Sunday's game with a quad injury.

Asked about Nance, Slocum said: "He's a skilled runner. That's why he's a tailback. I think our return scheme fits his abilities."

Injury updates

Coach Mike McCarthy said he'd take a more cautious approach this week with Driver, with Driver being "questionable" for practice this week. Driver's initial injury was a quad bruise, and now he had a quad strain. He has gone two games without a catch after making a grab in 133 consecutive games.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers shouldn't miss time with a sprained ankle suffered in the fourth quarter and the training staff was examining tight end Andrew Quarless' shoulder sprain, but McCarthy said the training staff didn't think it was serious.

Four-point stance

— The Packers have until Nov. 8 to make a decision on Al Harris, Atari Bigby and James Starks, who remain on the physically unable to perform list. The choices are add them to the 53-man roster (with corresponding roster moves to make room), put them on injured reserve or release them.

— Game balls went to Greg Jennings on offense, the entire defense and defensive coaching staff on defense and punter Tim Masthay on special teams. Safety Anthony Smith, whose diving stop prevented punter Steve Weatherford from converting a fourth-and-18 on a fake punt, received the big hit award.

— Twice, McCarthy poked at reporters, who almost unanimously picked the Jets. Now, everyone figures to pick the Packers against struggling Dallas (1-6). "Oh yeah, we'll talk about it. We'll talk about it today, we'll talk about it Wednesday. We appreciate the negative stories, so if you can keep that up, that's always helpful. It's all part of our business. It's important to stack success. The hardest thing to handle in my opinion in the NFL is handling success, and by no means do I think winning two games is a success, but it's definitely in the right direction, and that will be part of our language this week when we get together as a football team."

— In case you missed it, the Vikings released Randy Moss on Monday. For a third-round pick, the Vikings got 13 receptions and two touchdowns in four games.

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at and Facebook under Bill Huber.

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