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McCarthy: 'A lot riding' on Packers-Vikings game

McCarthy: 'A lot riding' on Packers-Vikings game

By Jay Sorgi. CREATED Nov 30, 2012

GREEN BAY - The NFL playoff chase is beginning to hit the home stretch of December.

The Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings both enter their NFC North contest at Lambeau Field on Sunday knowing that a win is critical to their efforts to play in January.

"A lot riding for both teams," said Packers Coach Mike McCarthy on Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News" about the showdown between the 7-4 Packers and 6-5 Vikings.

"I think our division is clearly the toughest in football.  The records speak for (themselves).  The good thing is that everything is right in front of us."

The Packers come in with a mixed bag of health news for the contest.

The good news: wide receiver Greg Jennings is expected to play after a prolonged absence due to a groin injury.

McCarthy credited Jennings with hard work to rehab and get back on the field.

"That's exactly what you want from all your players.  Greg has been through a lot in the last month and a half.  He has put a lot into returning.  In the same breath, we have to be smart.  We're going to start a little slow and see how he does," explained McCarthy.

"We're back to full strength (at wide receiver).  This is how we started the season, the ability to line up and keep interchanging players."

There's still a question about the availability of two other Pro Bowlers, linebacker Clay Matthews and safety Charles Woodson.

"Both those guys will be evaluated this morning.  I don't see them practicing today, but we'll see the news the doctor brings us."

The news was very happy for McCarthy's wife that he declared his mustache out for the remainder of the season.

McCarthy, quarterback Aaron Rodgers and others grew mustaches as part of the Movember movement to bring awareness to men's health issues like prostate and testicular cancer.

"It didn't quite make December 1st.  My wife was definitely happy about that.  It wasn't a big hit at the house."