The Green Bay Packers released their final Week 3 injury report that included Aaron Jones, David Bakhtiari, and Christian Watson as questionable. Also added to the injury report was Jaire Alexander. Here’s what you need to know.
Jones returned to practice the last two days in a limited fashion after dealing with a hamstring injury he suffered against Chicago. Of course, every injury is different, but when Romeo Doubs was sidelined with a hamstring injury, he was out for 12 days, practiced twice in a limited upon his return and then was on a snap count against the Bears.
In Jones’ case, he returned to practice after missing 10 days and, as already mentioned, has been limited for two days. So do with that information what you will. With the Green Bay run game struggling to start the season, getting Jones back feels like a must. Issues in the run game have translated to the passing game with their ineffectiveness in early downs putting the offense in obvious passing situations.
Watson returned to practice last Friday, although he missed the Atlanta game. He was limited on Wednesday, had a rest day on Thursday, and was limited again on Friday. Given his recent practice status and the time frame, I would feel optimistic about his chances to play on Sunday as long as their isn’t a setback.
This week, the Packers face a very aggressive New Orleans secondary that is not going to be afraid to challenge these Green Bay receivers. Overall, the Saints defense is one of the best in football. Through two games they’ve been excellent in the red zone and on third downs, and under Dennis Allen have a 10 game streak going back to the 2022 season where they haven’t allowed more than 20 points in a game.
An addition to the injury report was Alexander, who was not on it prior to Friday. He is questionable with a back injury, but did practice in a limited fashion on Friday. This is a Saints offense that wants to push the ball downfield, with Derek Carr leading the NFL in pass attempts of 20-plus yards.
Given that there are only four cornerbacks on the 53-man roster, whether or not the Packers elevate someone from the practice squad on Saturday may be quite telling to what Alexander’s status is. If the Packers are without Alexander, Carrington Valentine will start in his place.
Of the five players questionable, Bakhtiari is the only one who didn’t practice Friday. His status is an unknown after swelling in his knee kept him out of the Atlanta game. On Wednesday, Bakhtiari spoke with the media about his knee. I imagine the Packers will give him until Sunday to see whether or not he can go.
The last player listed as questionable is Lukas Van Ness, who suffered a elbow injury in Atlanta. He did return for one play that game before exiting for good. Van Ness was limited all three days in practice this week. Against the New Orleans offensive line, the Packers pass rush should have the opportunity to get after Carr. That unit has surrendered eight sacks this season already and ranks as one of the worst in pass protection by ESPN and PFF.
Zayne Anderson and Elgton Jenkins are both listed as out. Anderson has been dealing with hamstring injury this week and hasn’t practiced. As a late addition to the roster following cutdowns, he has been inactive the first two games. Jenkins, meanwhile, suffered an MCL sprain on Sunday and will miss some time. Some good news, however, is that he told Rob Demovsky that he doesn’t anticipate going on IR.
With Jenkins out, the Packers have to do some reconfiguring song the offensive line. I run through some options here.
New Orleans Saints Injury Report
Paulson Adebo, CB, QUESTIONABLE
Amadi Ugo, S, QUESTIONABLE
Foster Moreau, TE, DOUBTFUL
Jamaal Williams, RB, OUT