Bye week helps Packers get healthy ahead of divisional round

Green Bay Packers, Matt LaFleur (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Matt LaFleur (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

The bye has helped the Packers get healthy for the playoffs.

While the other three remaining NFC teams were in action in last week’s wild-card round, the Green Bay Packers were able to rest and get healthy.

And the week off looks to have helped.

In their last game, there were 14 players on the Packers’ injury report. But on their first report of the week ahead of Saturday’s divisional round game against the Los Angeles Rams, there are seven players listed with an injury.

Not only does the week off give players extra time to recover, but by not playing a game, it prevents more players getting hurt.

For example, the Rams advanced with their victory over the Seattle Seahawks last week, but Aaron Donald and Cooper Kupp were injured and could be below 100 percent this week.

Of the Packers’ seven players on the injury report, only one player didn’t practice. Defensive tackle Kingsley Keke has a concussion and didn’t practice.

The other six players — cornerback Kevin King (Achilles), wide receiver Allen Lazard (core/wrist), tight end Marcedes Lewis (knee), edge rusher Za’Darius Smith (ankle/thumb), wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown (knee/ankle), and tackle Rick Wagner (knee) — were all limited.

Many of them have been playing through the same injuries for much of the season so the Packers will likely have almost everyone available.

For the Rams, there are a few names to watch on the injury report this week.

Future Hall-of-Famer Aaron Donald is the best defensive player in the league, but he didn’t practice on Wednesday due to a ribs injury. While it seems likely Donald will play this week, how close to 100 percent he’ll be remains to be seen.

Wide receiver Cooper Kupp, who leads the Rams with 974 receiving yards and three touchdowns this season, has a knee injury and didn’t practice on Wednesday. His status is uncertain.

However, quarterback Jared Goff’s status looks more clear. Goff began the wild-card game as the backup but actually entered the game due to an injury to John Wolford. Goff finished the game, and now he was listed as a full participant at practice on Wednesday.