Green Bay Packers hitching their wagon to Davante Adams


The Green Bay Packers have spoiled their fan base with two decades of above-average offsenses led by Hall of Fame worthy quarterbacks. It’s made the plummet back to Earth over these last three games all the more painful, and in their 18-16 loss to the Detroit Lions in week 10, the Green Bay Packers didn’t look close to finding an answer. They did, however, look at wide receiver Davante Adams. A lot.

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The second-year receiver out of Fresno State racked up an obscene 21 targets on Sunday afternoon, a number usually reserved for the likes of Brandon Marshall or Antonio Brown. Adams didn’t manage much with the increased attention, posting just 10 receptions for 79 yards, but he’s quickly becoming the focal point of Aaron Rodgers‘ offense. In week nine against the Panthers, Adams hauled in seven passes for 93 yards.

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A highlight-reel grab overshadowed a handful of drops and narrow misses for Adams, but at this point, it would take much more than a drop to cost him his prominence in the Packers’ scheme. Unfortunately, that says more about their positional depth than his current ability. With Jordy Nelson out of the 2015 picture, he seems to be the only boundary receiver capable of creating even the slightest bit of separation.

Randall Cobb has bounced between the slot, backfield and wide spots with similarly underwhelming results. Through nine games, Cobb has 45 receptions for 529 yards and three touchdowns, three of which came in a late-September outburst against the Kansas City Chiefs. Not only has Cobb struggled to create separation of his own, but with the ball in his hands, he’s often been surprisingly bottled up. Nelson’s absence has allowed opposing safeties to stay more involved, and when Cobb makes his 6-to-10 yard receptions over the heart of the field, there they are.

James Jones has also failed to top two receptions since October 4th, and it’s becoming increasingly evident that his best fit is as an infrequent chain-mover or red zone weapon. Separation isn’t even in the conversation with Jones, and truthfully, that never has been part of his game. Through the majority of the field, his looks are going to Adams.

With Ty Montgomery battling an ankle injury, Jeff Janis continuing to be the Great Green Bay Mystery and Jared Abbrederis still scratching the surface (though encouragingly), the arrows continue to point to Adams.

The Packers have some attractive pass defenses remaining on the schedule, but after back-to-bag target hog weeks, Adams will be seeing more double-coverage and safety help than he has in his young career. Will this be a catalyst for someone like Cobb and Abbrederis to finally break out, or will Adams push through and perform? He’s certainly got the skill set, and as he showed with a highlight catch-and-run against the Dallas Cowboys last season, his yards-after-catch potential is through the roof.

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It’s become painfully evident that the Green Bay coaching staff is failing to properly adjust the play calling in-game, so at a certain point, Rodgers needs a co-star. Eddie Lacy remains injured and/or disapointing, so with James Starks coming off a sluggish performance, it looks like that co-star needs to come out wide. That has to be Adams, and even if there’s some force-feeding involved, he’ll have more than enough opportunities this Sunday in Minnesota.