The Green Bay Packers are going to need their depth to come up big if they're going to upset the Atlanta Falcons today.
Receiver Randall Cobb, receiver-turned-running back Ty Montgomery and outside linebacker Clay Matthews were listed among the inactives. They join cornerbacks Damarious Randall and Quinten Rollins, running back James Starks and tight end Jared Cook, who were ruled out on Friday.
All seven are primary players for the Packers.
Cobb, Matthews and Montgomery were listed as questionable on Friday's injury report. During the portion of Thursday's practice that was open to reporters, Cobb threw passes to the receivers during an individual-skills period rather than catch the passes, Matthews went through the opening stretch and Montgomery watched the running backs. The team did not issue any updates following Saturday's practice.
Cobb is the team's best slot receiver. The other options used to be Montgomery and Jared Abbrederis, but Montgomery — who had filled the void at running back with back-to-back 10-catch games — is out, too, and Abbrederis was placed on injured reserve and released this week. Cobb's status could mean Jordy Nelson will fill the slot role and Jeff Janis will get a bigger role. At running back, the team will lean on Don Jackson and Knile Davis, though Jackson has an injured hand and Davis was acquired in a trade 12 days ago.
Cobb is the Packers' leading receiver with 39 receptions for 388 yards. He leads the NFL in third-down receptions.
Julius Peppers will start for Matthews.
FRIDAY'S INJURY STORY: The mini-bye following last Thursday's win at Chicago failed to work wonders on the Green Bay Packers' injury report.
Green Bay heads to Atlanta for Sunday's NFC showdown with receiver Randall Cobb, guard T.J. Lang, outside linebacker Clay Matthews and receiver/running back Ty Montgomery listed as questionable. If the Packers would have practiced, all four would have been limited participation, so that's the silver lining from Friday's injury report.
Coach Mike McCarthy said on Friday morning that Matthews and Cobb were "progressing" through their hamstring injuries. Matthews and Lang (hip) missed time in the Chicago game. Montgomery, with back-to-back 10-catch games, is battling an illness.
"I think this is around the time of the year where everybody starts to feel little aches and pains," Lang said on Thursday. "Just got to remind yourself that not everybody’s feeling great and you’ve just got to push through some things and find a way to play. It was a little bit uncomfortable at times, but out there on Sunday I think the adrenaline takes over and kind of limits or the restrictions you might be feeling on a normal day. That’s kind of what I was relying on, just going out there and with the long weekend after the game didn’t want to be sitting around feeling like I let anybody down. Yeah it was uncomfortable, but going to be something that I’m just going to have to find a way to deal with the rest of the season and make sure I’m properly maintaining."
Tight end Jared Cook, cornerbacks Damarious Randall and Quinten Rollins and running back James Starks are out. Without Randall, who recently had groin surgery, and Rollins, who will miss a third consecutive game with a groin injury, the Packers will have to stop Atlanta's top-ranked passing attack with LaDarius Gunter, Demetri Goodson and Micah Hyde as their corners in the nickel package.
For Atlanta, running back Tevin Coleman is out and defensive end Dwight Freeney is questionable. Coleman leads all running backs in yards per catch and paired with Devonta Freeman to lead all backfield one-two punches in yards from scrimmage. Freeney, who had four sacks for Arizona in two games against Green Bay last season, didn't practice all week.
|WR Randall Cobb||Hamstring||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|TE Jared Cook||Ankle||DNP||DNP||DNP||Out|
|RB Don Jackson||Hand||Full||Full||Full||--|
|G T.J. Lang||Hip||Limited||DNP||Limited||Questionable|
|OLB Clay Matthews||Hamstring||DNP||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|WR Ty Montgomery||Illness||Limited||Liited||Limited||Questionable|
|CB Damarious Randall||Groin||DNP||DNP||DNP||Out|
|CB Quinten Rollins||Groin||DNP||DNP||DNP||Out|
|RB James Starks||Knee||DNP||DNP||DNP||Out|
|RB Tevin Coleman||Hamstring||DNP||DNP||DNP||Out|
|RB Devonta Freeman||Hip||Limited||Full||Full||--|
|DE Dwight Freeney||Quad||DNP||DNP||DNP||Questionable|
|WR Taylor Gabriel||Concussion||Limited||Full||Full||--|
|CB C.J. Goodwin||Hamstring||Limited||Limited||Full||--|
|OT Jake Matthews||Wrist||Full||Full||Full||--|
|WR Mohamed Sanu||Groin||Full||Full||Full||--|