GREEN BAY – Jermichael Finley didn’t have his most productive game of the season on Sunday night – he caught only two passes for 12 yards, dropped another pass and was on the field for only 24 of a possible 73 snaps – but the fact that the Green Bay Packers tight end played at all was impressive, according to head coach Mike McCarthy and tight ends coach Jerry Fontenot.
Finley, who was listed as questionable with what he had called a “slight dislocation” of the A/C joint in his right shoulder, was limited in practice on Thursday but is expected to play against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday, just as he did against the Texans.
“For Jermichael even to play in the game I think says a lot about him,” McCarthy said after practice Thursday. “I know the training staff didn’t think he was going to be able to play after his exam Sunday (after the Indianapolis game) and even Monday morning (Oct. 8).
“For what he did between Monday and Friday to get on the field and show he could do it is a huge credit to Jermichael. We put him on a rep count in the game. Once again, he’s ready, he wants to go (this week), he wants more. But I know our doctors are a little reluctant based on his examination and what they’re seeing and the history with the A/C joint. We’re trying to be smart with him but he’s champing at the bit to play more.”
Fontenot said there were certain things Finley couldn’t do – like run block the way he normally would or put a hit on defensive ends before going out in his pass route – but the offense worked around it.
“We tailored some things and we targeted some things we really wanted him to do, and then some other things we took off his plate,” Fontenot said. “The guy played through a lot of pain. I’ve seen guys with that injury before, and some guys can’t play with it. Did (the injury) show on film? I’d say a little bit, but not to the degree with the type of injury that he had.”
As for Finley’s drop, which according to ProFootballFocus.com was his sixth of the season (STATS did not charge him with a drop on the play), Fontenot said the issue remains a priority.
“(We) just keep drilling it. That’s all I know to do,” Fontenot said. “Just keep working. And fortunately he’s a guy who never complains about work. He always wants more.”
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