Bishop, Hodge, Lumpkin standout against Titans; Flynn may have No. 2 QB job
The Green Bay Packers lost their exhibition finale to Tennessee Thursday night, 23-21 at Lambeau Field.
The Packers' starting offense had only one play - a 68-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Rodgers to Greg Jennings and Green Bay's starting defense played just one series as well.
"I thought about putting them back out there but our number one priority for the first group was to come out of the game healthy," said Mike McCarthy, Packers' head coach.
The Titans, meanwhile, played their starters for at least a half.
McCarthy said he was pleased that his back-up defenders held the Tennessee first-stringers to a touchdown and two field goals before halftime.
"That long drive in the third quarter took a lot out of that group. But I was very pleased with the way the second defense played," McCarthy said.
One standout in the No. 2 defense was back-up linebacker Desmond Bishop who seemed to be everywhere on the field and was the definite defensive playmaker for the game.
Another defensive playmaker Thursday night was linebacker Abdul Hodge, who continues to have an excellent preseason.
"I'm healthy now and I feel like I can play ball freely now and just be myself," said Hodge.
On the offensive side of the ball the second-string surprise of the preseason continues to be the play of undrafted-free agent rookie running back Kregg Lumpkin, who showed the ability to break tackles and produce with second effort.
"He's a better player when he gets past the line of scrimmage than I originally thought. He gets more comfortable. ... You see the physicality of his play has increased and I thought he did some good things tonight," McCarthy said.
McCarthy's goal was to escape healthy, but long snapper J-J Jansen and guard Junius Coston both left the contest with knee injuries and linebacker Tracy White hurt an ankle.
Titans' quarterback Vince Young bruised his left thumb in the second quarter, but he'll be okay.
No. 2 QB
Brian Brohm and Matt Flynn spent most of the game competing for the Packers' number-two quarterback spot. Brohm completed 7-12 passes for 52 yards.
Flynn was 8-13 for 77 yards and he threw two late touchdown passes of six yards to Brett Swain and 22 yards to Jake Allen.
"We just kept grinding, grinding, grinding and made some plays," said Flynn.
A two-point conversion attempt would have tied the game at the end, but Johnny Quinn caught Flynn's pass out of bounds.
"Two minutes at the end of the game is controlled chaos. You gotta be going fast, but you gotta be in control," he added.
Flynn said at LSU he was in a number of close games and is used to working under that pressure in front of big crowds.
McCarthy is still leaving the door open to bringing in a veteran backup behind Aaron Rodgers, depending on what other teams do.
The deadline is tomorrow afternoon for teams to get their rosters down to 53 players and the Packers must cut 22 players by then.
Green Bay finished the pre-season at 1-3 and they'll open the regular season a week from Monday night at home against Minnesota.