With a Thanksgiving Day game at Detroit looming Thursday, the Packers don't have much time to sit and dwell on the losses to injury of cornerback Al Harris and linebacker Aaron Kampman.
Both players suffered torn ACLs in Sunday's 30-24 victory over San Francisco at Lambeau Field, leaving head coach Mike McCarthy to figure out how to replace two of the more important players in the NFL's fourth-ranked defensive unit.
"That's really a big part of a coach's responsibility, to overcome these types of situations and navigate through your medical phase of and aspect of your football team," said McCarthy.
Tramon Williams will start in place of Harris at cornerback while Jarret Bush and rookie Brandon Underwood will backup at the position.
Underwood, selected in the sixth round of this year's draft, wasn't expected to see much action this season and wasn't on the active roster until an injury to Will Blackmon at Minnesota on Oct 6.
"We've got to go in there with what we've got," cornerback Charles Woodson said. "Whoever (is) in that backup role has to be prepared to go in there and play Thursday."
Rookie Brad Jones started in place of Kampman last week when he missed the Dallas game with a concussion. The seventh-round draft pick, along with Brady Poppinga, will likely see a majority of action in Kampman's place.
"The two rookies had a chance to play today and it'll give them a chance to learn from being in there," McCarthy said. "Brad had a chance to play some last week so he'll have two games to work off, and Brandon, it was obviously a big opportunity for him so we'll just keep coaching them."
Kampman's injury poses some longer-term questions. The eighth-year player is a free agent after this season and has struggled at times adapting to Dom Capers' 3-4 defensive scheme after being named to the Pro Bowl twice as a defensive lineman.
"Anytime you lose a veteran player, it's tough," said Cullen Jenkins. "We're just going to have to come together as a team, rally behind them and play well."
For more on the Packers' victory, check out Drew Olson's Green Bay Replay.
Gobble gobble: The Packers will be making their 33rd appearance in a Thanksgiving Day game and have a 12-18-2 record on the holiday.
They will be playing Detroit for the 18th time on Thanksgiving. The Packers and Lions met every year from 1951 to 1963, a string halted by Vince Lombardi.
His 1962 team was 10-0 heading into the Thanksgiving game and beaten by the Lions, 26-14 at Tiger Stadium -- the only loss of the season for Green Bay. In 1963, the teams played to a 13-13 tie that wound up costing the Packers a share of the Western Conference championship.
For more on the Packers-Lions Thankgiving history, check out this OnMilwaukee.com piece from 2007.
Prime-time for the Bucks: The Brandon Jennings Bandwagon is getting a little more crowded every day. Now it's the Worldwide Leader, ESPN, that's getting on board. The network -- which some wondered if even knew of the Bucks' existence -- has added the Friday night game at Oklahoma City to its broadcast schedule. That game was originally set to get underway at 7 p.m. but will now begin at 8:30. It will also be carried -- in high-def -- on FS Wisconsin.
At 8-3, Milwaukee is in a virtual tie with Cleveland atop the Central Division. The Bucks lead the Cavs by percentage points, but are two games back in the victory column. They are back in action tonight at San Antonio where they will be reunited with former teammate Richard Jefferson.
MU puts away Grambling: Marquette coasted to its third victory of the season, easily dispatching Grambling State, 87-41, Saturday night at the Bradley Center behind a 15-point effort from Jimmy Butler.
Things will get significantly harder for the Golden Eagles, who host South Dakota Tuesday then travel to Florida later this week to take part in the Old Spice Shootout in Orlando. Marquette's first opponent is Xavier. The Musketeers (3-0) handled Bowling Green, 101-57 Friday and are the defending Atlantic 10 Conference Champions (30-7, 14-2).
Bowl-bound Bucky: The Badgers' disappointing loss to Northwestern didn't appear to quell their hopes of a New Year's Day Bowl Game. Most of the major prognosticators see Wisconsin playing in the Outback Bowl (Tampa) against a Southeast Conference Opponent. The Badgers have faced SEC opponents in Bowl Games each of the last six years, posting a 2-4 record during that stretch. The last five Wisconsin bowl games have all been in Florida, which three trips to Orlando (two Capital One and one Champs Sports Bowl) and two appearances in the Outback Bowl.
Beating any SEC opponent could go a long way for Bret Bielema's efforts to put a stamp on the Wisconsin program.
Wisconsin (8-3, 5-3 Big Ten), is off this week before wrapping up the regular season at Hawaii on Dec. 5.
Wave opens with a victory: Nick Vorberg recorded 13 saves to lead the Milwaukee Wave to a 15-0 victory in their season-opener against Monterrey Sunday. It was the first time in the franchise's 26-year history (1,011 games) that the Wave recorded a shutout on the road.
Milwaukee jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the first quarter and cruised to the finish. Brett Wiesner and Hewerton each had a pair of goals for Milwaukee, which plays at Rockford Friday night before opening the home portion of its schedule on Dec.6.
Briefly: After steamrolling Lakeland, 70-7, Saturday in the first round of the NCAA Division III playoffs, the UW-Whitewater football team will host Illinois Wesleyan Saturday at Noon in Whitewater. ... The Wave is offering fans a bus ride to its Friday night game in Rockford. Game and bus packages are available for $30, check out the team's Web site for details. ... Brett Favre completed 22 of 25 passes -- a career-best 88 percent -- for 213 yards and four touchdowns in Minnesota's 35-9 victory over Seattle. The Vikings (9-1) are all but assured of winning the NFC North title. ... Cal O'Reilly's goal at 2:39 of overtime gave the Admirals a 2-1 win over Houston Sunday. The Admirals beat the Aeros twice in three days, both by one goal. ... The Marquette women will spend thier Thanksgiving in Cancun, where they will take part in theCaribbean Challenge. The Golden Eagles' first-round opponent, Cleveland State, fell to Wisconsin, 70-68, Sunday in Madison.