GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - The Green Bay Packers are 4-6-1 with five games left. A playoff push begins with the 2-9 Arizona Cardinals this Sunday at Lambeau Field.
Green Bay would likely need to win five straight games and get some help from other NFC teams.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers said the team plans to play loose and take "calculated chances" during this stretch.
"Yeah, why not?" Rodgers said Wednesday. "If we lose, you guys are just going to write us off, so might as well let it all hang out these last five [games]."
Rodgers has been criticized for his fundamentals affecting his play.
Wednesday Rodgers responded:
“I’m a 2-time All-USA Fundamental Team. I have the big helmets in my office. I don’t know. I don’t think I need to respond about fundamentals. I drill the fundamentals. I throw how I throw. I’m not playing any different this year, just we are not completing as many passes percentage-wise,” Rodgers said at his locker.
Rodgers numbers through 11 games has 20 touchdown passes and just one interception but his completion percentage ranks 28th in the league which has led to national media outlets criticizing his mechanics.
“I don’t put a lot of weight into a pundit on ESPN talking about fundamentals. I listen to my quarterback coach and my offensive coordinator. My head coach. I study myself. I’m very critical of my own film. I’m not playing any different fundamental wise so you can’t have it both ways. You can’t love it when it’s a certain way and then critique it when it’s the other way. I mean you guys can because that’s what you guys get paid to do but again, that’s the news cycle. They are going to pick a things when you are in a situation like this where you are at 4-6-1 so it comes with the territory,” Rodgers said.
Rodgers said he stays on top of his fundamentals in practice but much of it is muscle memory.
“Yeah, we drill them. I guess I’ll have to go back and take a look at that a little bit, maybe,” Rodgers said.
Two of Rodgers’ throws in the past two games were questioned on Wednesday. In the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks Rodgers threw a pass into the feet of receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling on 3rd-and-2 with four minutes left.
Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy then decided to punt on 4th-and-2 and Seattle ran out the clock for the 27-24 win.
Rodgers said he practiced throwing the ball quickly without the laces and just threw it into the ground. The other pass in question was intended for Equanimeous St. Brown in the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings.
Rodgers threw it into his feet and said the ball stuck to his hand.
“It’s embarrassing for sure. It happens to the best of us. I remember [Brett Favre] used to say ‘anything that you do, I’ve done many times previous’ and I actually tell the young guys this all the time the mistakes that you make, I’ve made them before and they are frustrating and embarrassing but it happens,” Rodgers said.
Thirteen players were listed on the Green Bay Packers injury report on Wednesday. Eight players did not participate in practice.
T David Bakhtiari (Knee)
CB Bashaud Breeland (Groin)
S Kentrell Brice (Ankle / Concussion)
RB Tra Carson (Rib)
DL Mike Daniels (Foot)
WR Trevor Davis (Hamstring)
TE Jimmy Graham (Knee / Thumb)
S Raven Greene (Ankle)
McCarthy told the media Wednesday morning WR/KR/PR Trevor Davis would not play this week against the Cardinals.
Davis injured his hamstring against the Vikings last week. Starting left tackle David Bakhtiari suffered two knee injures against Minnesota. He said Wednesday he will do his best to play this Sunday.
Four Packers players were limited during practice. The list includes starting left guard Lane Taylor (quadriceps), WR Equanimeious St. Brown (elbow), CB Kevin King (hamstring) and WR Randall Cobb (hamstring).
The Packers play the Arizona Cardinals at Lambeau Field at noon on Sunday.