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Packers likely to have WR Allen Lazard available vs. Buccaneers

The Green Bay Packers are calling him a game-time decision, but receiver Allen Lazard is “optimistic” about playing Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers despite an ankle injury, per Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.

Lazard missed Week 1 but returned to action in Week 2, leading the team in snaps by a wide receiver in a win against the Chicago Bears. He did limp off the field during one sequence, but his absence from practice on Thursday is described by Fowler as precautionary.

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The Packers were without all four top receivers during practice on Thursday, but Lazard and rookie Christian Watson returned on Friday. Randall Cobb is out with an illness, and Sammy Watkins is dealing with a hamstring injury.

In Week 2, Lazard caught two passes for 13 yards and a touchdown.

The injury report will come out later on Friday. Lazard will likely be listed as nothing worse than questionable.

Having Lazard available would provide a big boost for both Aaron Rodgers and the run game. The veteran receiver has chemistry with the quarterback and experience in the offense, and he’s the best and most versatile blocking receiver on the roster.

In his only appearance against the Buccaneers in the NFC title game in 2020, Lazard caught three passes for 62 yards.