GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – After spending a 5th round pick on quarterback Sean Clifford in this year’s NFL draft, the Packers have named the 25-year-old rookie as Green Bay’s backup quarterback heading into the season.
During Matt LaFleur’s press conference on Thursday afternoon, the Packers head coach was clear that the team is set with Clifford backing up first-year starting quarterback Jordan Love this season.
“I think it’s safe to say that Sean [Clifford] is our number two quarterback,” LaFleur expressed. “I think a lot of it is just his mental makeup in terms of what we saw in the Cincinnati game. In terms of his ability to rebound and the game’s not too big for him. So I think when the moments are at their highest, which is typically in your two-minute situations, he’s out there cool, calm, and collected.”
Clifford has appeared in both of the Packers preseason games and has thrown for 345 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. Clifford had no idea that the decision was made until members of the media asked him about it at his locker after Thursday’s practice.
“I come from a place at Penn State that you always have to prepare like you’re the starter,” Clifford said. “I did not know that. That’s awesome to hear, but at the same time, it doesn’t really change any preparation or anything. It’s all about the day-to-day process and making sure you’re prepared for every moment.”
The 25-year-old quarterback spent five years at Penn State where he appeared in 51 games and threw for 10,661 yards with 86 touchdowns and 31 interceptions. Clifford will head into the season as Jordan Love’s backup and as Love finds out what life is like as a starting quarterback in the NFL, he’s confident in Clifford’s ability to be there for him on the sidelines.
“Sean’s done great. Coming in, he’s had OTA’s and training camp, but he’s picked up the offense really fast. I was just telling him the other day that he picked up the offense so much faster than I did my rookie year. He’s a very smart guy. He knows what he’s doing out there. So I think it’ll be no problem for him just communicating things because he knows the offense and now he can be those eyes and ears to communicate with me and what he’s seeing,” Love expressed about Clifford.
The NFL roster cut date is on Tuesday, August 29th at 3:00 p.m. (CT). The Packers will have to cut down to the initial 53-man roster.