McCarthy brings dome-successful Packers to emotional matchup with Lions
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GREEN BAY - The unofficial second half of the NFL season begins in a setting in which the Green Bay Packers have had much recent success. Domes. In emotionally ramped-up divisional road games.
It seems incomprehensible for a team that takes pride in playing on the most storied grass in the sport at Lambeau Field, until you look at the record.
The Packers are 17-8 (.603 winning percentage) under Coach Mike McCarthy when a roof blocks fans' view of the sky, and they're 9-3 (.750) in such games in the NFC North in emotion-laden games like what they'll face Sunday at the Detroit Lions.
McCarthy told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News" that part of the equation for his team's dome success has to do with how well his team plays overall. "It's definitely the quality of the team you bring to the dome," explained McCarthy.
"They're all road games. It speaks volumes about our ability to perform in a noisy atmosphere. It's a real credit to our players. It's a real challenge from a cadence standpoint. It's something you have to prepare for. Our guys do a great job of it."
Their dome performance is almost as good under McCarthy as their Lambeau Field record (38-16, .703 winning percentage), and their divisional dome record surpasses it.
Part of his team's method involves blasting crowd noise to cacophonous levels in the team's indoor practice facility by Lambeau Field.
"It gets annoying, but you get used to it."
Another preparation McCarthy has made involves the higher emotion of divisional games, particularly against a historical chippy Detroit team with a record of dirty play. (See the "Suh Stomp" as a prime example.)
"One thing about division games, there's history. There's personal history. Most of the players that will play in this game are familiar with one another."