The New Orleans Saints are heading into their Week 1 matchup with the Green Bay Packers with increasing questions marks at cornerback.
#Packers #Saints injury report on Thursday. Za’Darius Smith again limited, Preston Smith did not practice with head laceration (not serious) pic.twitter.com/yjyUriyzT8— Dave Schroeder (@SchroederWBAY) September 9, 2021
Never good news to see a team’s starting cornerback downgraded mid-week with a knee injury. Though there’s no telling at this point just how serious the injury is that landed Marshon Lattimore on on Thursday’s injury report.
Listed with a knee injury, it could be mostly precautionary. But combined with the persistent hamstring injury to Ken Crawley which has now caused him to miss practice two days in row in addition to the last few weeks, there’s reason for a little concern here. But no need to overreact on the Lattimore front just yet. A situation to monitor
Aaron Rodgers and Devante Adams are “coming to town” (the game will be in Jacksonville, FL) and that presents a less than ideal situation for the Saints who could be thinning at the cornerback position before improving once Bradley Roby is available Week 2.
Also on the Saints injury report without participation is wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith. Smith has been dealing with injuries throughout the offseason. He missed time before returning for a couple days and leaving again during the offseason. This week, he was present on Wednesday, but out on Thursday.
The fourth-year wide receiver has almost all of the ingredients for a breakout gumbo: chemistry with Jameis Winston, the skillset to attack deep, and the opportunity without Michael Thomas available for the first six weeks. But without the roux of availability, it’s going to be hard to come by.
Even if Marshon Lattimore is available for Sunday’s game (which is still certainly possible), it does look more and more like rookie cornerback Paulson Adebo will start for the Saints and see his first action earlier than anticipated. The 6’1” former wide receiver from Stanford was drafted in the third round by the Saints and has an elite skillset as a ballhawk, but will this be too soon to thrust him into action? It’s looking increasingly likely that he’ll be asked to sink or swim this week.
As for the Packers, no changes in status for those that were limited or missed practice on Wednesday, however pass rusher Preston Smith and TE Mercedes Lewis were added as DNPs. Za’Darius Smith, the other half of the Packers’ “Smith Brothers” pass rushing attack remains a story to watch throughout the week. But much like Lattimore, until a final decision is made, it’s all wait and see.
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