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Starter Pack: Bears week is here

A roundup of what’s happening on the Green Bay Packers beat.

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Eddie Lacy admitted he doesn’t know much about the rivalry between the Packers and Chicago Bears.

And why would he?

The rookie running back grew up in Louisiana and went to college at Alabama.

So Packers running backs coach Alex Van Pelt put it into terms Lacy could understand.

“My coach said, ‘Treat this game like Alabama and Auburn,’” Lacy said. “So I guess it’s pretty serious.”

That was the message waiting for Lacy -- and the rest of the Packers’ rookies -- when they returned to work on Wednesday following two days off after Sunday’s victory over the Minnesota Vikings.

No two teams have met more than the Packers and Bears, who will play for the 187th time on Monday night at Lambeau Field.

Packers coach Mike McCarthy is big on history lessons, especially for newcomers, so it won’t take any reminders from the veteran players what this week means.

“I don’t think we have to tell them; I think they kind of feel it from everywhere around here,” veteran linebacker A.J. Hawk said. “Not like an added pressure or anxiety, I think they feel the importance of this and kind of the magnitude of the game, especially it’s a Monday Night [Football] in Lambeau Field, so I don’t think you have to get guys excited for that. They’re ready for it.”

Elsewhere:

  • On our ESPN.com Packers page, you can find the following stories: Clay Matthews revealed that when he returns from his broken thumb, he will have to play with a club cast; defensive end Mike Daniels plays like he talks, at 100 miles an hour, which has led to his recent spike in play; for the third straight game, the Packers will be preparing to face a quarterback other than the one they might have expected. This week, it’s backup Josh McCown in for injured starter Jay Cutler. Also, in our NFL Nation Buzz segment, here’s a video look at the hot topics around the Packers this week.

  • At ESPNWisconsin.com, Jason Wilde noted that Matthews has been impressed with what the defense has done in his absence.

  • In the Green Bay Press-Gazette, Mike Vandermause and Weston Hodkiewicz noted that the Packers have run the ball on 44 percent of their plays from scrimmage this season. That’s the highest percentage in McCarthy’s eight seasons as head coach.

  • In the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Tom Silverstein talked to guard Josh Sitton about his move from the right side to the left this season. Sitton said at first he thought the coaches were “idiots” for moving him. Now, he thinks they’re “geniuses.” Silverstein and Tyler Dunne also noted that practice squad quarterback Scott Tolzien recently received a pay raise equal to being on the 53-man roster. According to WTMJ-TV, the Cleveland Browns recently tried to sign Tolzien to their roster.