Packers notebook

Homecoming of sorts for McCarthy, other assistants; Harlan makes HOF list; A first for Favre

Now that they have to be taken seriously as NFC title contenders with a 6-1 record, the Packers might have picked up some championship vibes from the Boston Red Sox.

The two teams occupied the Westin Tabor hotel in downtown Denver last weekend. After the Packers checked in Sunday afternoon ahead of their Monday night game against the Broncos, the Red Sox went out Sunday night and completed a four-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies in the World Series.

Packers head coach Mike McCarthy said being in proximity to the hoopla and subsequent title celebration for the Red Sox back at the hotel in the early-morning hours Monday was anything but a distraction for his team.

"The big band playing (at the hotel) had a heck of a time, from what the security guys told me," McCarthy said. "We had very little interaction (with the Red Sox). I went down to get a coffee (Monday morning) at Starbucks, and I saw a number of their players that were catching the bus or getting ready to leave. They looked like they had a great time, and they should have."

Crossing paths in the hotel lobby with the likes of Manny Ramirez, David Ortiz and Josh Beckett notwithstanding, perhaps the Packers' hot start and schedule could be a foreshadowing of bigger things ahead this season.

They are 6-1 for the first time since 2002.

Green Bay started in similar fashion in 1996 and ultimately got to 8-1 before heading to Kansas City. That was the Packers' last road date with the Chiefs until Sunday, and they lost 27-20.

Green Bay, in turn, duplicated the 8-1 record down the stretch, all the way to winning Super Bowl XXXI.

Back to where he started
McCarthy is returning to where he got his feet wet as an NFL coach. He was a Chiefs assistant, under Marty Schottenheimer, from 1993 to '98. McCarthy started as a quality control coach, then was promoted to quarterbacks coach for the last four years of his stay.

Packers assistants Mike Stock (special teams), Carl Hairston (defensive ends), Tom Clements (quarterbacks) and Kurt Schottenheimer (secondary), brother of Marty, also had coaching stints in Kansas City.

A first for Favre Brett Favre created another distinction for himself in team lore Monday night. He became the first Packer to throw two touchdown passes of at least 75 yards -- 79 yards to rookie James Jones in the first quarter and 82 yards to Greg Jennings on the first play of overtime to decide the 19-13 victory.

Favre has 13 touchdown passes of at least 75 yards, an NFL record.

Hall of Fame list of nominees announced
Team chairman Bob Harlan is among 124 modern-era players, coaches and contributors on the preliminary list of nominees for the 2008 induction class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Repeat nominees with Packers ties are retired general manager Ron Wolf and safety LeRoy Butler.

BY THE NUMBERS: 1 -- Number of NFL teams Favre has yet to beat as the Packers' starting quarterback since 1992. Favre is 0-3 against the Chiefs, Sunday's opponent. Indianapolis' Peyton Manning and New England's Tom Brady are the only quarterbacks in history to beat all 31 league opponents.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "That's the way coach (Mike) McCarthy thinks. He's trying to win the game. He's not trying to play for a field goal. We want it all. That's the thing that we've been doing more this year. We're not settling just to go out there and be competitive and be in the game. We're going out there to set the stage, set the tone and win the game whenever we've got the opportunity."
-- Receiver Greg Jennings, on head coach Mike McCarthy's go-for-the-jugular approach as the play-caller for the offense. Jennings was on the receiving end of an 82-yard touchdown throw from Brett Favre on the first play of overtime to give the Packers a 19-13 win at Denver on Monday night.


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