Green Bay has been on 49ers' minds since mid-April

September 6, 2012, 8:36 pm
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SANTA CLARA -- The Green Bay Packers have been the next game on the 49ers' schedule since mid-April, when the NFL released times and dates of all the regular-season games.A large portion of the preparation by the team's coaches took place almost immediately."We were chomping to find out who the first opponent was going to be," 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman said Thursday.Nearly five months ago, it was all the talk within the 49ers' team offices. The 49ers knew their 16 opponents, they just didn't know when the games would occur.
"There were a bunch of people running around saying, 'Has the call come in yet?' I know it's universal," Roman said. "Thirty-two teams, and once they find out, 'Bam!' Then they start preparations for the next season and how it's going to unfold."The 49ers scoured the game film and began formulating their plans based on what they saw from the Packers during their 15-1 regular season and NFC divisional-round loss to the New York Giants.Roman and the 49ers have prepared for the large variety of blitzes Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers employs. Green Bay's defense, statistically, ranked worst in the NFL in yards allowed. But the Packers tied for the 49ers for best in the league by generating 38 takeaways.There was plenty for 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio to consider, too.After all, Aaron Rodgers set the NFL record for passing efficiency with a rating of 122.5. He threw 45 touchdowns and just six interceptions while spreading the ball around to wideouts Jordy Nelson, Greg Jennings, James Jones, Donald Driver and Randall Cobb, along with tight end Jermichael Finley."We got right into it," Fangio said. "We did a scouting report and by the middle of May had a full scouting report done."When the 49ers reported for training camp in late-July, the focus was on installing the entire defensive package. But late in the exhibition season, the 49ers spent more time zeroing in on the Packers."There are some people that believe you should work four weeks on an opening-day opponent," Fangio said. "If you need four weeks to work on an opening-day opponent, then you're in trouble for the next 15 weeks."So we spend most of our team in training camp preparing for the season. We're working on things we know we're going to see throughout the season, things we're going to need throughout the season. Then, we get a little extra work on Green Bay toward the end of training camp."

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