Decision on McKenzie will wait

Feeling no need to tell the Chicago Bears anything they don't need to know, the Packers likely will not make a decision about cornerback Mike McKenzie's availability until Saturday, at the earliest.

McKenzie, who skipped the minicamps, training camp, the preseason and then the first regular-season game, reported for action Wednesday. While supposedly in great shape, keeping yourself in great shape is a far cry from being ready to cover opposing wide receivers. And running to keep in shape is about as different as can be from lining up in full pads and tackling someone.

"That's probably one of the things we worry about most, is the contact part of the game and the tackling part," defensive coordinator Bob Slowik said.

For now, Slowik said, Michael Hawthorne will remain the starting left cornerback. After a ragged preseason, Hawthorne generally had a good night against the Panthers.

"Mike Hawthorne played as good of game as we had in the secondary on Monday night," Slowik said. "So, it's not like, all of a sudden, Mike McKenzie is just automatically going to take over that role. He's going to have to earn that position, through practice or his performance in the game when he gets in there."

McKenzie got some work in the Packers' dime defensive package Thursday.

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