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Packers’ Cullen Jenkins Set to Return

January 4, 2011

“I think defenses do win championships.” Those were the words of Green Bay Packers’ head coach Mike McCarthy on Monday. And led by a stout defense all season long, the Packers clinched a playoff birth Sunday against the Chicago Bears. But as good as the Packers’ defense has been, opposing teams have found success running the football against the Green and Gold. In fact, the Packers last four opponents have averaged over 125 rushing yards per game.

McCarthy hopes to put an end to that trend by welcoming back defensive lineman Cullen Jenkins. Jenkins originally injured his calf in pre-game warmups against the Vikings on October 24 but could be healthy enough to resume practicing this week.

“It still feels a little weak,” Jenkins said. “Coming off the ball, that’s the big challenge that we have to get through this week. But we’re hoping we’re improving and we should be ready to go.”

In addition to Jenkins, McCarthy said right outside linebacker Frank Zombo (knee), safety Atari Bigby (groin) and fullback Korey Hall (knee) all have a chance to play this week.

“[All four players] will be going through testing today and tomorrow,” McCarthy said. “They’ll be evaluated on Wednesday morning. They’re making progress and we’re hopeful that maybe they can have a trial return for Wednesday.”

If the aforementioned players are all able to go, McCarthy will have his entire 53-man roster at his disposal for Sunday’s matchup in Philadelphia. And to stop a potent Eagles’ offense, the Packers will have to utilize every weapon in their arsenal.

The Packers playoff hopes rest on their defense, and the team’s chances are as good as any in the NFC. As McCarthy told players in his post-game locker room speech, “We’re 1 of 6.”

Plus, they have a pretty good defense.

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