Five Packers to watch vs. Lions with chance to earn first-round bye

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /
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Green Bay Packers, Jake Kumerow
Green Bay Packers, Jake Kumerow (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

3. A third weapon on offense

The Packers are in desperate need of a third option on offense. Davante Adams and Aaron Jones have done a superb job being go-to players for the Packers, but they will need more in the playoffs.

Throughout the season, players have taken turns stepping up and being that guy. Allen Lazard has been the most consistent stepping up, but that consistency hasn’t been big production. The team will take most of what he did last week with first-down producing catches. What they won’t take is the drops. What they could use more of is the type of plays Jake Kumerow made against the Bears.

That 49-yard reception was the type of explosive plays we haven’t seen out of a player not named Adams or Jones with any consistency.

The role can even be specialized. Jimmy Graham was supposed to be a red-zone monster for the Packers. With his size, even if his speed is gone, he still should be able to dominate down near the end zone. That hasn’t come to fruition. Graham only has five touchdowns in his two years with the team.

Jones has been stellar in the red zone, but you can expect teams to try to take that away in the playoffs so the team is going to need other options.

It really doesn’t matter who becomes that guy. Kumerow, Lazard or maybe tight end Robert Tonyan. The Packers need someone to step up and be another person the defense has to account for.

Maybe some schemes have been saved to give the team a fresh look late in the season, maybe not. Securing the bye will, at the very least, give the team a little extra time to plan some of those plays.