As the Green Bay Packers staff begins preparation against a playoff opponent that is to be determined, the players are breaking in the practice week with a light outdoor workout Thursday afternoon.
As owners of the lone first-round bye in the NFC, Matt LaFleur’s team has a chance to self-scout, get healthy, and watch the NFL’s Super Wild Card Weekend.
But what is the greatest benefit to having a first round bye?
“Over the past seven seasons, every Super Bowl participant – all 14 teams – had a bye week,” Packers Hall of Famer Larry McCarren tells Wisconsin’s Afternoon News. “So when it happens again and again, maybe it’s not just happenstance. Maybe there’s something to it.”
The Packers enter the playoffs having won five straight. An impressive run given the season-long shuffling of the offensive line.
With All-Pro left tackle, David Bakhtiari out with a torn ACL, the Packers will not have a fully loaded offensive line throughout the playoffs. Still, the Packers are 3-1 without Bakhtiari this season and the group is playing with confidence.
“The guys got a terrific attitude,” McCarren continues. “You don’t get this stuff done without talent. When injuries do come up, the guys in the locker room don’t get as worked up as we in the media do.”
As for which of the games this weekend will be of most interest to McCarren.
“I probably will be most interested in the Tampa Bay game…that’s the number-1 game for me.”
The Packers will face the lowest remaining NFC seed in the divisional round. That will mean a home game against the Buccaneers, Chicago Bears or Los Angeles Rams.