Jones on Rodgers: 'I Love That Dude'

WR James Jones (Andy Lyons/Getty)

Receiver James Jones brought his fire extinguisher to put out any possibility of a controversy after being at the receiving end of an emotional outburst from Aaron Rodgers on Thursday night.

Jay Cutler yelled at and shoved left tackle J'Marcus Webb after being sacked by Clay Matthews. Cutler has been taking his lumps, not just from reporters and fans, but at least one of his teammates.

Aaron Rodgers yelled at receiver James Jones after miscommunication on a route led to an interception. Rodgers hasn't fielded much criticism — though, curiously, he was called out by Jermichael Finley's agent.

On Tuesday, Jones brought his fire extinguisher.

"Me and A-Rod are way closer than that, man, to let something like that come in between us," Jones said. "We're out there trying to win the ball game. It was my fault. I gave him mixed signals. I mean, we're all emotional out there, man. It's common, man. We do a lot of head gestures and stuff like that, the camera may not just be on us. Me and him, we're both competitive, we're trying to win. It was my fault. We don't ever want to turn the ball over. I'm not mad at him. Shoot, we're trying to win, man. Get on me. I messed up."

In one of the more interesting developments of the weekend, agent Blake Baratz went on Twitter to blast Cutler for his antics, saying there's a "major difference" and drop-off between Cutler and the leadership from Peyton Manning, Drew Brees and Tom Brady. When Baratz's Twitter followers asked why he hadn't included Rodgers in that list of leaders, Baratz replied: "ARod is a great QB he isn't a great leader. There's a major difference. Leaders take the blame & make every1 better. He doesn't."

Questioning Rodgers' leadership skills is "ridiculous," Jones said. Jones, whose No. 1 supporter in free agency last offseason was Rodgers, likened the moment to a parent getting mad at his children. Jones said Rodgers apologized for the outburst, not that Jones felt it was necessary.

"Your kids do something wrong, you yell at them every once and a while," Jones said. "You tell them, ‘You can't do that. Don't go back by that outlet. You do it again, Daddy gonna pop you.' That's all it is. We're a family out there. Sometimes we argue, sometimes that stuff is going to happen. Like I said, it was my fault, made a mistake, should've crossed his face. At that point in time, we're trying to make a play. We're struggling as an offense already, especially in these first two games. Frustration will kick in. But I love that dude, man. That ain't going to change nothing."

Four-point stance

— The team was set to practice on Thursday afternoon. We will update with any developments from the part that is open to reporters. UPDATE: The only players who were held out were inside linebackers Terrell Manning (concussion) and Jamari Lattimore (ankle).

— Coach Mike McCarthy expected Greg Jennings to practice in a "limited fashion" after missing Thursday's game with a groin injury.

— Running back James Starks is expected to practice this week after being out for more than a month with turf toe. During Starks' time on the sideline, Cedric Benson signed and has put a stranglehold on the No. 1 job. "Our running back position is probably as competitive as its ever been since I've been here," said McCarthy, refusing to say what role a healthy Starks would have in the offense. "I feel really good about that group, top to bottom."

— With a mini-bye week, this week's four practices will be vital as the coaches have to trim the 53-man roster to 46 for Monday's game at Seattle. "This is about as challenging as it's been, because everybody on the board is competing to be a part of that 46. And that's where you want to be as a football team," McCarthy said.


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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.

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