Capers, Moss Sidestep Raiders Coach Queries

Defensive coordinator Dom Capers and assistant head coach Winston Moss have been mentioned as possibilities to follow Reggie McKenzie to Oakland. Plus, the final injury reports and more from Friday.

With former Green Bay Packers director of football operations Reggie McKenzie now running the show in Oakland, two of Green Bay's assistant coaches have been rumor-mill possibilities to be the Raiders' new head coach.

Assistant head coach/inside linebackers Winston Moss and defensive coordinator Dom Capers reportedly are being considered by McKenzie. Moss and Capers, not surprisingly, dodged questions about their coaching futures on Friday.

"You know, I'm normally the last to hear any of those kind of things because you have your head down and you're trying to prepare for this game," Capers said, two days in advance of Sunday's NFC Divisional playoff game against the Giants. "It's just that time of the year. There's always going to be a lot of speculation on a lot of things. I've been around long enough that I don't get too caught up in those things."

In the 60-year-old Capers' three seasons with the Packers, Green Bay has reached the playoffs every year. In 2009, the Packers finished second in the league in defense. In 2010, they ranked fifth in defense and second in points allowed. While the Packers finished last in the league in defense this season, they're a respectable 19th in points allowed, thanks to a league-leading 31 interceptions. In fact, in Capers' three seasons, Green Bay leads the way with 85 interceptions.

Moss joined the Packers in 2006 along with coach Mike McCarthy. He runs the team's daily turnover drills, which McCarthy has cited as a reason why the Packers have consistently been among the league leaders in turnover ratio. Moss has Raiders ties: An 11-year NFL linebacker, Moss played for the Los Angeles Raiders from 1991 through 1994.

"With all that's going on this week, and getting ready for the playoffs, I'm not going to comment about that," Moss said. "I think at an appropriate time, I'll be able to discuss that. Right now, I think it's better that I don't really comment."

The Raiders finished 8-8 this season, losing the AFC West to Denver on a tiebreaker. The Raiders have given away most of their draft with the trades for quarterbacks Carson Palmer and Jason Campbell and linebacker Aaron Curry, plus using a third-round supplemental pick on quarterback Terrelle Pryor. The Raiders have only fifth- and sixth-round selections, though they figure to get a third for losing cornerback Nnamdi Asomougha in free agency.

"I've said in the past that the situation would have to be right for me," said Capers, who went 30-34 as coach of the expansion Panthers from 1995 through 1998 and 18-46 as coach of the expansion Texans from 2002 through 2005. "I don't know much about that situation, so I haven't focused on it, so it would be hard for me to comment."

Packers injury report

Doubtful: LB Robert Francois (hamstring). Probable: RT Bryan Bulaga (knee); LT Chad Clifton (hamstring/back); WR Randall Cobb (groin); C/G Evan Dietrich-Smith (illness); WR Greg Jennings (knee); RB James Starks (ankle).

Clifton, Dietrich-Smith and Francois did not practice, with Cobb limited and the others full participation. For Clifton, it was the return to a typical schedule in which he rests on Friday to be fresh for the game.

"He looks ready to go," McCarthy said. "After viewing the film, I thought he looked better on Thursday than he did Wednesday. Yeah, I would be surprised if we walked in here tomorrow and he's not ready to go."

Giants injury report

Out: LB Mark Herzlich (ankle). Probable: RB Ahmad Bradshaw (foot/back); S Deon Grant (quad); CB Aaron Ross (concussion); RB Da'Rel Scott (knee); DE Osi Umenyiora (ankle/knee); RB D.J. Ware (concussion); CB Corey Webster (hamstring).

Bradshaw, who had been held out on Wednesday and Thursday, was a full participant.

Four-point stance

-- Giants offensive lineman Chris Snee, a day after B.J. Raji called the Giants' offensive line "not the toughest" group he's faced.

"All kidding aside, no one cares what B.J. had to say," Snee said. "Sometimes when you're young and you make it to a Pro Bowl and then to a Super Bowl and you have your own commercial, you feel the need to talk. We'll do our talking on Sunday."

-- McCarthy, on the Giants being "dangerous": "This game will be about us. This game will be about the path that we're able to keep the game on. It will come down to fundamentals. They're a very good football team and we expect for this to be an excellent football game. You say they're dangerous, I always look at that as a little bit disrespectful, like they're sneaking up on you."

-- McCarthy, on the fact no team ever ranked 32nd in defense has won the Super Bowl: "It's just like our record, 15-1. We won 15 games – doesn't mean anything right now, either."

-- The Packers, as usual, practiced inside on Friday, because the heated field is only 40 yards. "We broke a record today. We were able to get the Hutson Center below 25 degrees. We feel really good about that," McCarthy joked.


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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.


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