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Report: Packers “bound and determined” to get more physical

Mike McCarthy

Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy answers a question during a news conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Friday, Feb. 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)


Finesse will not be high on the list of things the Packers are looking for in the draft.

That’s the impression left by Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, who reports that people close to Packers coach Mike McCarthy and General Manager Ted Thompson say that both men have “freely acknowledged” in the last three months that the team is too soft and small. They are “bound and determined” to get things moving in the other direction, a project that should inform their draft decisions.

McGinn sees signs of the team’s desire to be bigger and stronger in the signings of tight end Matthew Mulligan and defensive lineman Johnny Jolly, two guys who are only going to make the final roster by being more physical than their competition in camp. The attempt to sign defensive tackle Steve McClendon away from the Steelers follows along the same line as the decision to bring Jolly back, although his big body will remain in Pittsburgh after the Steelers signed him to a new deal.

It doesn’t take sophisticated analysis to figure out that a team that gave up 323 rushing yards in their playoff loss could stand to be stouter than it was in 2012. The inconsistent running game would also benefit from a bit more physicality on the line and in the backfield, so there’s plenty of areas for the Packers to target in their effort to toughen up.