Green Bay Packers place Allen Lazard on reserve / COVID-19 list

October 26, 2021

GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Packers placed Allen Lazard on the reserve / COVID-19 list on Tuesday, which means the team could be without its top three wide receivers heading into Thursday’s game against the undefeated Arizona Cardinals.

The news about Lazard comes a day after lead receiver Davante Adams landed on the reserve / COVID-19 list.

That means unless Márquez Valdés-Scantlng can get off injured reserve (he missed the last four games with a hamstring injury but there’s hope he can return this week), the Packers could be left without. his top three receivers against Arizona.

“There sure is a little impact factor,” Rodgers said of the knowledge of the Adams test. “But we fixed it last year. Maybe we are a little healthier than some of the other teams in terms of not having as many cases. But there have been cases here and we have treated them.”

Veteran Randall Cobb, who returned to the Packers this season after a year in Dallas and a year in Houston, could be Aaron Rodgers’ main target against the Cardinals. Running back Aaron Jones is second on the team with 26 receptions.

The only way Adams could play in Thursday’s game is if he is asymptomatic and has two negative tests 24 hours apart. He has not been forced to follow the protocols for unvaccinated players, an indication that he is vaccinated.

The Packers are scheduled to leave for Phoenix on Wednesday, and Adams couldn’t travel with the team without two negative tests. However, he could possibly travel on game day, if that’s when he received the second negative test.

“I’ve talked to him,” Rodgers said of Adams. “He seems to be fine from a health standpoint. Obviously, he’s disappointed.”

Rodgers, who expected it to be a false positive test for Adams, said Tuesday that he was not concerned about his own COVID status, although he did not elaborate.

Meanwhile, the Packers have managed to win all six games Adams has missed in the past two seasons: two last season and four in 2019.

“I don’t know,” Rodgers said after a laugh. “We’re not a better team without him, that’s for sure. I’d have to look at every one of those games, but we just found a way in those games.”

Surprisingly, Rodgers and the Packers have actually been more productive on offense without Adams during those six games than with him since the start of the 2019 season: 32.8 points per game with him; 25.9 per set without. Other stats that are better without Adams in the lineup: Rodgers completion percentage (70% without vs. 66% with) and yards per game (311 vs. 247).

Rodgers has 17 touchdowns and one interception in those six games without Adams.

The Cardinals are well aware of Rodgers’ success without Adams on the field, and defensive coordinator Vance Joseph recited the Packers stats without Adams out of his head. Joseph pointed out that when quarterbacks like Rodgers don’t have their star catcher, the responsibility for carrying out an offense falls on them.

“Sometimes it helps them play an even cleaner game,” Joseph said. “He’s not forced to force the ball to Adams. And when you have a guy like Adams who is a volume pass receiver, you can catch him to throw the ball to Adams. But without Adams, he’s going to force Aaron to play. a real game and that, sometimes, is dangerous for us.

“But he has played his best ball without Adams. And again, not having Adams is not good for them, but it is going to force Aaron to play a cleaner game. History shows it, he played well and we will see how it works.” . [Thursday]. “

Adams ranks third in the NFL with 744 receiving yards on 52 receptions, which is tied for second, but has remained relatively under control the past two weeks with 10 total receptions for 165 yards and two touchdowns.

Still, Adams ‘receptions this season are double Jones’ and 37 more than Lazard (15), which is the largest gap between the No. 1 and No. 2 receivers for a team in the NFL.

Now it’s up to coach Matt LaFleur, offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett and passing game coordinator Luke Getsy to somehow come up with a plan that works.

“I mean it definitely modifies, for sure,” Rodgers said. “You know he hasn’t had the same kind of goals as maybe the first five weeks the last two weeks. But he’s definitely a focal point of our offense.”

While Cobb was not present for the six games without Adams in the lineup, it appears that LaFleur and his staff may have mentioned the team’s record without Adams once or twice.

“Yeah, yeah, we’ve heard it, we’ve heard it,” Cobb said. “It’s 6-0.”

ESPN’s Josh Weinfuss contributed to this report.