High COVID-19 rates in Green Bay have the Packers attention

No state in the country is seeing higher positive COVID-19 rates than Wisconsin right now, and Green Bay is among the places being hardest hit. In fact, among NFL cities, no city is being hit harder than the home of the Packers.

In the latest data posted by the NFL Players Association, the Green Bay metro area with a 14-day average daily new cases rate of 66.6 per 100,000 people. The next closest city in the NFL was Houston at 28.7 per 100,000 people.

It’s a figure that has not gone unnoticed by Packers coach Matt LaFleur.

“We always have to very, very mindful, especially where we’re at in our area right now,” LaFleur said Monday. “Our guys have done an outstanding job of being disciplined, of taking care of themselves. Really, it comes down to putting the team first, and we’ve got to continue to do that. Because all it takes is one guy. If one guy gets it, it can take down this whole operation.”

The message was hammered home even more after news broke Tuesday about eight positive tests — three players, five team personnel — within the Tennessee Titans organization. They had to shutdown their team facility, with reports indicating it could be closed until Saturday. Their opponent this past weekend, the Minnesota Vikings, also shutdown their facility to do further testing even though they did not have any positive results in their latest testing.

“I think the biggest thing we’ve got to remember is this is real,” linebacker Ty Summers said. “Regardless of what people’s opinions are on it, there’s people that are getting this, and at the end of the day, people who have it, they can’t play. It’s all about being smart.

“I know right now Green Bay’s got a really high number, so (LaFleur) has been making an emphasis just for us to be smart, recognize where we’re going, who we’re around. That way we don’t bring that in there. We enjoy playing football. We’d like to keep playing.”

The Packers (3-0) will host Atlanta (0-3) on Monday night at Lambeau Field.