Jaire Alexander had another strong game for the Packers in Week 6.
Not much went right for the Packers in Sunday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but despite all of the struggles the defense had, you may have noticed one thing: Mike Evans didn’t have a big game.
Entering Week 6, Evans had caught a touchdown in every game of the season and quickly established himself as Tom Brady’s number one target.
That all came to an end this past week. Brady only threw Evans’ way twice, with the wide receiver catching one pass for 10 yards. Alexander was the reason why.
According to NFL Next Gen Stats, Alexander shadowed Evans on 79 percent of his routes. Of those routes, Evans was targeted once but didn’t have a single reception in Alexander’s coverage.
This comes two weeks after Alexander covered Atlanta Falcons receiver Calvin Ridley for most of the game, not allowing a catch. For perspective, Ridley has put up over 100 yards four times this season, and this past week finished with 61 yards and a touchdown. Against the Packers, he had zero catches.
Clearly, as we saw on Sunday, Alexander can’t do it all. He needs his teammates to step up. But it’s encouraging to see Alexander dominate matchups against not only talented wide receivers, but pass catchers who are on top of their game.
Alexander has been one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL this season and, the way he’s played in the Packers’ opening five games, should be an All-Pro. Let’s hope the poor performance of the Packers defense doesn’t hurt his chances; he’s been doing his part.
The Packers will be tested again this week against Deshaun Watson and the Houston Texans. Alexander will be key for the defense to get off the field.