One of Edgar Bennett’s go-to phrases in any press conference is “making the most of your opportunities.”
On Thursday night, it will be Bennett’s opportunity.
As is coach Mike McCarthy’s custom, he will turn over the play-calling duties to the offensive coordinator – Bennett – for Thursday night’s preseason finale vs. Kansas City.
“Just an opportunity for Edgar Bennett, specifically, and really just to give those guys a chance to develop as far as career enhancement,” McCarthy said before Tuesday’s practice. “Frankly, looking back on it as an assistant coach, you wish you would have had that opportunity before you had to do it for real. It’s something as a head coach you can give to your assistant coach.”
McCarthy gets something out of it, too. This will be the players’ last chance to make an impression before Saturday’s final cuts and the last opportunity for those who make the team to show they deserve a bigger role on the team.
“It really gives me a chance to focus on the personnel for the game, and that’s something I’ve personally benefitted from, just watching guys, watching the interaction on the sideline, watching the communication,” McCarthy said. “It’s all things you can’t see on video when you evaluate the game the next day.”
And what does McCarthy want to see? The sense of urgency of a player fighting for his career.
"Super Bowl or bust. I think you have to" have that mentality, McCarthy said. "You have to practice that way, you have to play that way. Any time you perform across the white line and it’s on video, you have to go about it the same way. So, obviously, you want these young men to go out and play their best game, to lay it all out there, not only for the opportunity to be here, but the opportunity to play in the NFL. That’s always been our approach."
Bill Huber is publisher of PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at www.twitter.com/PackerReport.