The Green Bay Packers are hoping to be at full strength injury-wise for their first playoff game this weekend.
Green Bay has been without its best pass rusher, Za'Darius Smith, since Week 1 due to a back injury. Additionally, the Packers have not had top cover man Jaire Alexander since Week 4, when he went down with a shoulder injury in a win over Pittsburgh.
Both Smith and Alexander have been working their way back though, hoping to be available during the playoffs. Packers head coach Matt LaFleur is optimistic that both 2020 Pro Bowlers will be able to contribute against the San Francisco 49ers on Saturday night.
“They’ll be out there today and we’ll see how they react over the course of the week,"
Packers coach Matt LaFleur used the word “hopeful” when asked if Jaire Alexander and Za’Darius Smith would play Saturday.
“They’ll be out there today and we’ll see how they react over the course of the week.” pic.twitter.com/GbTeDjWboB
— Rob Demovsky (@RobDemovsky) January 18, 2022
">LaFleur said of Smith and Alexander, via ESPN's Rob Demovsky.
Green Bay, the No. 1 seed in the NFC, had a bye during the first round of the playoffs last weekend. The Packers will host the sixth-seeded 49ers at Lambeau Field on Saturday.
The winner of the game will move on to face either the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or Los Angeles Rams in the NFC Championship Game.
Green Bay beat San Francisco in Week 3 this season, but the 49ers have won the last three postseason matchups between the two historic franchises.