The Green Bay Packers got some good news at practice today as outside linebacker Rashan Gary (concussion), guard Elgton Jenkins (knee) and quarterback Aaron Rodgers (thumb) returned to action in a limited capacity on Thursday. This left only tackle David Bakhtiari (knee), cornerback Shemar Jean-Charles (ankle) and receiver Allen Lazard (shoulder) as the non-participants in practice today.
Packers-Bills Thursday injury report pic.twitter.com/fj19CduhGQ— Matt Schneidman (@mattschneidman) October 27, 2022
After practice, Bakhtiari called his knee a “fluid situation” but didn’t expand on what that meant, per Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Bakhtiari was a limited participant in every practice last week, was not given a Friday status, was given a questionable status on Saturday and didn’t end up playing against the Washington Commanders on Sunday. Prior to Week 7, Yosh Nijman, now the team’s starting right tackle, was spelling Bakhtiari at the left tackle position. If Bakhtiari can’t go, assume that rookie fourth-rounder Zach Tom, who played well last week but received a significant amount of chip help, will get the nod at left tackle.
Wood also noted that Lazard, the team’s leading receiver, stated he would “probably not” play against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday Night Football. Lazard was injured against the Commanders and played off and on following his injury. Lazard previously dealt with an ankle injury earlier this season. Lazard was seen in a sling on Monday but not on Wednesday.
If Lazard is out of the picture, the team’s remaining receivers are Sammy Watkins (hamstring, limited), Christian Watson (hamstring, limited), Romeo Doubs, Amari Rodgers and Samori Toure. This is Watson’s first week practicing with the team since his second hamstring flare-up. It’s uncertain if he will play against Buffalo. Watkins practiced with the team in a limited capacity last week and was able to suit up against Washington, though.
If worst comes to worst and Watson can’t play this weekend, the Packers do currently have an open roster spot that would allow them to add Juwann Winfree as their fifth receiver as a practice squad promotion. Winfree has already been elevated from the practice squad three times in 2022, meaning that the team will have to use a 53-man roster spot to play him in any remaining game this season. Another option would be elevating either Travis Fulgham or Kawaan Baker, the team’s other practice squad receivers, which wouldn’t count against the 53-man roster.
As far as the Bills go, running back Taiwan Jones (knee) returned to practice as a limited participant on Thursday, leaving just tackle Spencer Brown (ankle) as the team’s only non-participant in practice. The other limited participants in practice today were receiver Jake Kumerow (ankle) and center Mitch Morse (elbow.) Morse was limited on Wednesday with a veteran rest day but had the elbow designation added to his status on Thursday.