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Thursday Cheese Curds, 1/6: Allen Lazard leads a group of valuable role players

Lazard and other less-decorated players are poised to play a key role in the playoffs.

Chicago Bears v Green Bay Packers Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

You can count on your stars to shine bright, but Super Bowl contenders always need their role players to reach new heights as the playoffs begin. The Packers seem well-positioned to benefit from that exact phenomenon this year.

Allen Lazard will get plenty of attention in that discussion, but he’s far from the only role player who’s getting a chance to shine. Dean Lowry is putting consistent pressure on opposing passers, Tyler Davis is finding his own spot in the tight end rotation, and Rasul Douglas continues to show the value of a well-time midseason signing. Heck, the entire offensive line could be grouped together as basically a five-headed role player that’s stepped up in a big way this year.

Chances are, one of these guys is going to have the chance to make a big play in the postseason, and if there’s one upside to the Packers’ ongoing injury issues this year, it’s that role players have had a bigger opportunity to get valuable reps than they normally would. When their number is called in the playoffs, they’ll be ready.

Allen Lazard’s strong finish bodes well for Packers’ offense |

I wrote about Lazard’s emergence down the stretch earlier this week, but Mike Spofford offers an interesting take on a specific part of Lazard’s game that’s helping the Packers: contested catches.

NFL’s best signings and trades of last offseason: Nine bargain players for 2021, plus 2022 candidates | ESPN+ ($)

The Packers land two players on this list, and it shouldn’t be a challenge to guess who they are. Hint: it’s a linebacker and a cornerback.

Which NFL QBs Could Be on the Move This Offseason? And Where Might They End Up? | The Ringer

Aaron Rodgers isn’t the only quarterback rumored to be on the move this offseason. The turning of the quarterback carousel should be the biggest story of the first half of 2022.

Wentz Remains Colts’ Biggest Problem | Football Outsiders

An interesting look at what Carson Wentz does — or does not do — for the Colts.

Titans employees recover wedding ring fan lost in stands | UPI

Big win for the Titans: they’ve already found a ring this year.