GREEN BAY - The first day of Packers training camp, for rookies is almost like the first day of school. It's a day filled with anxiousness and excitement.
Rookie running back Johnathan Franklin played it cool about what the day was like, "Football gonna be football no matter what day you're playing and where you're playing it at."
His competition at running back Eddie Lacy admitted he had a few butterflies.
"You know you're going to be nervous," Lacy said. "You don't want to make a mistake. You want to show the coaches you know everything and you can play as fast as you can but mistakes are part of the game you'll make them and have to correct them the next time."
First round pick Datone Jones could hardly contain himself when discussing the details of the day.
"I was very excited. I love football. I love being in this locker room," Jones said. "There's nothing else like it."
Mike McCarthy promised some new wrinkles to camp this year, the most obvious, three two minute TV timeouts complete with music.
Randall Cobb enjoyed some tunes during the down time, "I wasn't really paying attention to it. I did hear the first song. I thought it was pretty good. I felt like I was at a pool party or something. It was fun."
Cobb said that the breaks could pay dividends during games by helping the team sharpen their focus.
"Being able to get out and get your mind off the game and then getting it back into it, just practicing the little things I think will help us," Cobb said.
Mike McCarthy explained his reasoning for adding the breaks, "TV timeouts are part of the game and it's part of the curve athletes' bodies go through on game day."
The breaks were also put in place to help keep players healthy.
"From what I know the heart rate goes down a little bit and then we go out and do a real high tempo drill," said Bryan Bulaga, offensive tackle.
Aaron Rodgers said that changes like that show just how good of a coach Mike McCarthy really is.
"I give Mike a lot of credit. I think he's done a great job of big picture messaging. He really has. It's fun to see Mike grow just like we've all grown in here who worked here for a long time. I think he'd tell you today he's grown a lot as a coach," Rodgers said. "He does and excellent job with the team schedule the big picture thoughts the themes each week. It says a lot about the preparation he puts in and how badly he cares about this team and this organization."
Each year Mike McCarthy chooses a theme for training camp. This year it's protection, connection, and reflection, ideas that have resonated with his players.
"It was definitely meaningful," Randall Cobb said. "I think always that first message you get going into training camp is something you carry throughout training camp and you think about."
Aaron Rodgers said the reflection bullet point carried the most weight for him.
"The reflection was really important to me. They turned on the video of us opening up the rings in 2011 in June after we'd won the Super Bowl. You get a little choked up, that's a special moment frozen in time being all together there for the last time that group thinking about what we accomplished. When you reflect back you remember how special those moments are and the desire to have them again."
This is just day one in that journey that hopefully will end with Rodgers lifting the Lombardi Trophy once again.
First responders helped ring in the holidays at the 45th annual Howard-Suamico Christmas Parade.
Christmas is just two and half weeks away, and kids and families are getting into the holiday spirit.
Single digit temps around the area caused problems in the Fox Valley Saturday morning.
The frigid temperatures forced some area communities to cancel their weekend Christmas celebrations. But New London braved the cold for its annual Holiday of Wonder Parade.
Maybe it's the weather. Maybe it's all of the injuries, but many Packers fans are saying "no thanks," to this weekend's Packers game.
With only a little snow on the ground in places, snowmobilers are ready for more. In the Lakewood area, trails are not yet open, but clubs are gearing up for an early start to the season.