Packers vs Saints season opener: 3 takeaways from initial injury report

The Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints released their first injury report of the 2022 season on Wednesday, and there were few surprises.

Although the teams aren’t required to give an injury designation until later in the week, it was nice to see very few guys on the original list. Green Bay only had three guys named with Za’Darius Smith and Tyler Lancaster listed as limited participants and Vernon Scott as a did not practice. Meanwhile, New Orleans only had one guy on their injury report–cornerback Ken Crowley who did not practice.

Of course, both teams have big-name players on the Physically Unable to Perform list with Michael Thomas sitting out for the Saints and David Bakhtiari still recovering for the Packers. Still, let’s get to three takeaways from the first injury report of the season.

The Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints released their first injury report of the week. Let’s take a look at some of the main takeaways.

3. Limited safeties

With Scott being listed as DNP and his availability for Sunday’s game seriously in question, Green Bay will likely only have three healthy safeties available. Starters Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage will be relied upon to play every snap while Henry Black will get some spot duty as well.

There was talk about Amos playing the nickel corner at times this year so it will be interesting to see if new defensive coordinator Joe Barry pulls that out in Week 1. If one of their top guys goes down, the Packers will be in a pinch. Don’t be surprised to see them activate Innis Gaines from the practice squad this week.

2. Youngsters on the defensive line will need to play

Lancaster was listed as a limited participant on Wednesday, and if he misses the game, it could spell significant playing time for one of the young defensive linemen on the roster. Kingsley Keke is already slated to start, but rookie Tedarrell Slaton–who was impressive in training camp and preseason–could have an even bigger role if Lancaster is out.

1. Za’Darius Smith’s status in question

Smith missed all of training camp and preseason with a back injury and only just returned to practice this week. Although that’s good news for his long-term health, his status for Sunday is still up in the air. Even if he’s cleared, it’s unlikely he’ll be in shape enough to play every down like he’s used to. That means the up-and-coming Rashan Gary will be featured heavily against the Saints.