The Green Bay Packers have been without Pro Bowl cornerback Jaire Alexander for each of the past six games. The two-time Second Team All Pro injured his shoulder against the Los Angeles Rams and has yet to return to the field despite being able to practice. Green Bay is 3-3 in these six games.
For weeks, many have wondered why Alexander is not on the field for games. If it was truly a bad injury, they argue, why wouldn’t the team have placed him on injured reserve? Conspiracy theorists among the fanbase and in the media have been insinuating that there is a breakdown between Alexander and the coaching staff.
This idea, unfortunately, was propelled further when Alexander deleted his Packers-related posts on Instagram. It should be noted, though, that he does this every year and that his profile picture is of him in his Packers uniform.
Still, Alexander’s absence has been a hot topic among those outside of the Packers locker room. During his press conference today, head coach Matt LaFleur revealed the real reason why their star cornerback has not seen the field, and it does not give much hope in their ability to assess injuries.
The Green Bay Packers “Miscalculated” How Bad the Jaire Alexander Injury Was
This is not the first time that Alexander has dealt with a serious shoulder injury. He missed most of 2021 with an injury to the same shoulder that is ailing him now. Despite the fact that it was a second injury to the shoulder that cost him most of 2021, for some reason, the Packers did not think it was serious enough to warrant a stint on injured reserve:
Jaire Alexander has missed six straight games with the same shoulder injury and not gone on IR. He’s been practicing for a month.
Did the Packers just miscalculate how long he’d be out or is it something more?
LaFleur said it’s “more of a miscalculation.”
— Matt Schneidman (@mattschneidman) December 18, 2023
As anyone who watches football knows, the shoulder is a vital part of tackling and Alexander, as a defender, is required to tackle. The reason why he has been able to practice is because the NFL banned tackling in practice in an effort to preserve player health.
It should also be mentioned that Alexander has a per-game bonus as part of his contract. Due to the number of games he has missed this season, he is out over $400,000.
In other words, if he could play, he would. Alexander has no reason, financial or otherwise personal, to not play if he were fully healthy.