GREEN BAY, Wis. – The transactions that the Green Bay Packers didn’t make on Saturday were much more noteworthy than the ones the team announced.
For a second consecutive week, the Packers elevated rookie safety Henry Black from the practice squad to the active roster for Sunday’s game against Minnesota. Also, the practice-squad addition of veteran receiver Seth Roberts was made official.
The big moves – or non-moves – were at kicker, receiver and linebacker.
K Mason Crosby: The Packers have been working out kickers all season just in case something happened to Crosby. Well, that something was this week. Crosby didn’t practice on Wednesday and Thursday (back/left calf) but did practice on Friday and was listed as questionable.
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Rookie kicker Nick Vogel, who had been going through COVID testing all week, had an impressive workout on Friday, according to a source. He wasn’t signed, signaling Crosby should be good for Sunday, though a source said the final decision won’t be made until Sunday morning. The window to sign Vogel has closed. So, if Crosby can’t go, punter JK Scott will handle the kicking duties and No. 2 quarterback Tim Boyle likely will replace Scott as the holder.
Drafted by the Packers in 2007, Crosby hasn’t missed a game in his career. His streak of 214 consecutive games is almost as long as the next two kickers combined, with Tucker at 134 games and Detroit’s Matt Prater at 97.
LB Christian Kirksey: Kirksey suffered a pectoral injury early in the Week 3 game at New Orleans and was placed on injured reserve. He practiced all week but was not activated. Even while missing three-plus games, he’s tied for second on the team with 27 tackles. Without Kirksey, the Packers will lean on rookies Krys Barnes and Kamal Martin.
WR Allen Lazard: Lazard caught 13 passes for 254 yards (19.5 average) and two touchdowns in the first three games. He was a star at New Orleans but suffered a core-muscle injury in that game that required surgery. As was the case with Kirksey, Lazard practiced all week – a remarkable feat in itself considering the nature of the injury – but was not activated. Even while missing three games, he’s second on the team in receiving yards.
Black: Elevated when starter Darnell Savage was unable to play last week, the undrafted free agent from Baylor who goes by the nickname “Jackpot” had a smashing debut with two tackles and one forced fumble in just six snaps. Savage is questionable for Sunday.
Roberts: In playing 63 of 64 games with the Oakland Raiders from 2015 through 2018 and 15 of 16 games with the Baltimore Ravens in 2019, Roberts caught 179 passes for 2,097 yards and 15 touchdowns. That’s a five-year average of 36 receptions, 419 yards and three touchdowns. Most of his production has come from the slot.