GREEN BAY, Wis. — Running back Eddie Lacy still might have some work to do to fully win over head coach Mike McCarthy.
On the penultimate day of the Green Bay Packers’ minicamp and their offseason program, McCarthy issued some cautionary words when asked Wednesday what he expects of Lacy until the players report back for training camp near the end of July.
“Every player is responsible for their five weeks (away), and with that, there’s a plan, there’s communication of a plan and expectations of all of our players,” McCarthy said.
“Eddie, in particular, I hope he definitely goes with the plan that he used this year as opposed to last year. He’s just like all of our guys.”
After McCarthy went public at the end of last season with criticism of how heavy Lacy played throughout last season, the young standout responded by shedding weight with an intensive workout program.
Lacy trained with P90X founder Tony Horton in the early portion of the offseason. McCarthy and teammates took favorable notice of a slimmer Lacy when he reported for the team’s spring workouts in mid-April.
“So far, so good,” McCarthy said three weeks ago, when the Packers were in the midst of their organized team activities.
Lacy’s workout regimen with Horton included boxing and playing basketball.
Saying McCarthy’s rebuke from January was “my wakeup call,” Lacy vowed during OTAs to get in better shape.
Lacy wouldn’t say at the time how much he lost, other than “enough to be lighter.”
Still, first-year running backs coach Ben Sirmans said this week that Lacy could be reconnecting with Horton again for some more training in the next few weeks.
The team continues to list the 5-foot-11 Lacy at 234 pounds, which was his listed playing weight last season, when he rushed for only 758 yards and three touchdowns after piling up 1,100 yards on the ground each of his first two pro seasons.
–Third-year receiver Jeff Janis revealed this week that he sustained a bruised back when he fell at the end of his 41-yard touchdown catch on a Hail Mary pass from Aaron Rodgers in the divisional round of the playoffs five months ago.
The incredible play in the final seconds of the fourth quarter forced overtime in a game Green Bay lost 26-20 to the host Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals ended the game by scoring a touchdown in the opening possession of the extra period, denying Green Bay’s offense a chance to have the football one more time.
Janis said he hurt the back when he landed on a knee of Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson in the end zone.
“If I would have had to go back out there, obviously I would have, (but) I don’t know how effective I would have been,” Janis said.
Janis, a seventh-round draft pick in 2014 who hadn’t played much on offense his first two seasons, took advantage of increased playing time in that game as the Packers endured a slew of injuries to their top wideouts.
Janis finished with seven receptions for 145 yards. He also snared a 60-yard heave from Rodgers on fourth-and-20 from Green Bay’s four-yard line to keep alive that score-tying drive late in regulation.
That performance drew praise from Rodgers, and the two-time MVP quarterback has liked what he’s seen from Janis this offseason.
“I think he’s really starting to trust me a little more,” Janis said.