Notebook: Flynn Returns To Bench

Matt Flynn defends the final sequence at New England; plus, Pro Bowl voting updates and more from Wednesday.

Just like last week, the media horde was stationed at Matt Flynn's locker.

This time, though, Flynn is back to being a backup. With starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers cleared from his concussion, Flynn is facing a typical week with a lot of mental reps and only a handful of physical reps at practice.

"it's not anticlimactic. It's the job. It's the backup quarterback's job," Flynn said on Wednesday. "I was very fortunate and very happy about last week and being able to play. This week we've got Aaron back. We're in a must-win situation so it's good to have him back. I'm going to prepare just like I did last week and be ready to go if anything happens."

By all accounts, Flynn had a tremendous starting debut. He completed 24-of-37 passes for 251 yards, with three touchdowns and an interception. According to the Elias Sports Bureau (via the Packers), Flynn's passer rating of 100.2 is the highest by a quarterback making his starting debut against a team with a 10-2 record (or better) since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970. Flynn had the Packers in position to beat the Patriots on the final drive but was sacked on an all-or-nothing fourth-down play with time running out.

"You know, to be honest with you, talking to the coaches and talking to everybody, it was actually handled pretty well," Flynn said of that much-critiqued final sequence. "What messed us up was not getting the first down. The refs kind of talking about whether it's fourth, whether to measure or whatever. After that you're running down under 20 seconds. If you run a play just to get the first down, you run the risk under 20 seconds of not being able to clock it, get everybody set. So, it's one of those things. You run the clock down, take the last play of the game, it's fourth down so you gotta go for the end zone."

Flynn appreciated Rodgers' support and help but Rodgers downplayed it and said Flynn deserved all the praise he has been receiving.

"I appreciate that, but it was Matt Flynn playing very good football and I don't know that I really gave him anything concrete that really helped him," Rodgers said. "But I think he prepared very hard and he performed very well. So, a lot of credit goes to Matt and I think the guys on this team. He got a lot of pats on the back about the way he played on Sunday."

Mr. Popular

If there's an election and Green Bay fans get a vote, then a Packers player is sure to win.

And sure enough, with fan balloting for the Pro Bowl complete, four Packers were the top vote-getters at their positions: cornerback Charles Woodson, linebacker Clay Matthews, guard Josh Sitton and tackle Chad Clifton.

Rodgers finished behind Michael Vick and Drew Brees at quarterback. Vick got the most votes among all NFC players.

Fans, players and coaches each count for one-third of the vote. The players and coaches are casting their votes this week. The 43-man rosters will be announced on Tuesday and the game will be played on Jan. 30 in Honolulu.

Packers injury report

Out: DE Cullen Jenkins (calf). Did not participate: LB Frank Zombo (knee). Limited participation: LB Diyral Briggs (ankle); T Chad Clifton (knees); S Nick Collins (ribs); LB Clay Matthews (shin); LB Erik Walden (quad). Full participation: CB Pat Lee (ankle); DE Ryan Pickett (ankle); QB Aaron Rodgers (concussion); CB Charles Woodson (toe).

Collins exited the New England game with a rib injury. "It was tough," he said. "I wanted to be out there with my teammates, and unfortunately they shut me down. It was the heat of the battle, but they didn't want me to go out there and risk any more injury so I had to sit out for the second half."

Giants injury report

Did not participate: T David Diehl (illness); DE Dave Tollefson (knee). Limited participation: WR Marion Manningham (heel); DE Osi Umenyiora (knee); Full participation: T Shane Andrews (back); C Shaun O'Hara (foot); WR Devin Thomas (hamstring).

Four-point stance

— Former Packers returner Will Blackmon is handling kickoffs (18.3-yard average on 13 returns) and punts (6.7 average on 14 returns) for the Giants. "We've enjoyed having Will here," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said in a conference call. "He's a bright, bright young man. He did some real good things for us when then he got injured. We did get back and he's contributed again, but he's done a nice job."

— Giants safety Antrel Rolle has no doubts the Giants will bounce back from last week's horrific loss against Philadelphia by winning at Green Bay: ""I don't think. I know it," Rolle said when asked straight out if the Giants are going to the playoffs. "I don't think it, I know it."

Scott Wells was the Packers' center during the 2007 NFC championship game, which the Giants won 23-20 in overtime. It was the third-coldest championship game in NFL history, with a kickoff temperature of minus-1. On Sunday, the forecast is a high of 24 with a 40 percent chance of snow showers. "I don't think the weather had anything to do with that game, looking back," he said. "They got it done, we didn't. This week, it's great football weather."

— On Tuesday, the Packers made some moves to their practice squad. In his Adrian Battles, a rookie guard from Minnesota State who was among the Vikings' final cuts. Back is safety Michael Greco, a rookie from Central Florida who was a collegiate quarterback. And gone is wide receiver Terrance Smith, who was placed on the practice squad/injured list.

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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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