Aaron Rodgers lobbied for Allen Lazard to get chance
Aaron Rodgers’ relationship with his coaches has been a topic for years, so it’s a good sign that Matt LaFleur is willing to listen.
With receiving options dropping like flies, and well, dropping, the Packers quarterback went to the staff last night to specifically ask for Allen Lazard to get a chance. Lazard responded with four catches, 65 yards and a touchdown to help the Packers come back for a 23-22 win over the Lions.
“I may have put in a good word there in the fourth quarter to get him some opportunities,” Rodgers said.
The Packers were without Davante Adams because of his toe injury, and Geronimo Allison left with a head and chest injury. Then rookie Darrius Shepherd played one off his face and into the hands of the Lions at the 1-yard line. So Rodgers went to receivers coach Alvis Whitted to ask “if [No. 13] could come in for a little bit.”
Lazard was an undrafted rookie from Iowa State last year, spending most of it on the Jaguars practice squad before the Packers signed him in December. He hadn’t caught a pass from Rodgers in a game yet, but was immediately targeted twice, the second going for a 35-yard touchdown. He then caught three more passes on the game-winning drive.
“I actually sit next to him in the team meetings, and we’ve struck up a pretty good friendship,” Rodgers said. “The thing that got me was, which you love as a quarterback, and that’s receivers coming back and telling you he wants the ball and what routes he wants to run. The big first down we had to him on the out route, that was him coming back to the huddle and telling me what play he wanted. For a young guy to do that, how can you not have confidence in that?”
And having the endorsement of the guy throwing the ball helps, as long as he delivers when given a chance the way Lazard did.