The Green Bay Packers gained some momentum in their win over the Washington Redskins. Aaron Rodgers had the offense looking much more efficient as the run game took over while James Jones and Randall Cobb were clicking. However, that offense could be a man short and a man limited when the Packers face off against the Arizona Cardinals as Andrew Quarless and Davante Adams are dealing with issues.
Quarless announced via Instagram that his season is officially done. The tight end has been dealing with a knee injury since Week 3. He managed to get activated before the matchup against the Cardinals in late December, but has not been healthy enough to be productive on the field. Richard Rodgers has stepped up in his place, but there was hope that Quarless could get back and be a help in the playoffs. Instead, the Packers are ending his season in order to use the roster spot for another offensive player.
Along with Quarless, the Packers will likely be without Adams who suffered an MCL injury against Washington. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Adams is not expected to play in the playoff game against Arizona which means Jared Abbrederis and Jeff Janis will get more playing time as the only other healthy receivers outside of Jones and Cobb. Head coach Mike McCarthy did not definitely rule out Adams, but said others would have to step up.
"This is how these things normally go," McCarthy said, via JSOline.com. "Davante told me after the game he was fine. The trainers obviously feel differently than that, and it's usually somewhere in between. Trust me, this is how these things normally go. I'll have a better read on it tomorrow."
Abbrederis has been quiet this season as he takes over the slot position. His best game came against the Oakland Raiders where he had three catches for 33 yards. He and Rodgers have reportedly been taking extra reps with one another in preparation for both Adams and Quarless being out for the matchup. Abbrederis recognizes that he must earn the trust of the quarterback.
"Trust, it's hard to earn but it's so easy to lose that trust," Abbrederis said, via JSOline.com. "So you have to make sure every day you're doing the right stuff, make the plays when they come your way, just keep being consistent. That's the biggest thing with him."
Rodgers will once again be working with a limited roster, something that has been the storyline all season for Green Bay. It has worked and it has not worked. The key for the Packers will be to get Eddie Lacy and James Starks running early and let the passing game feed off the success of the ground game.