A big piece of the Green Bay Packers new offense will be hobbled to start the season.
First-year Packers head coach Matt LaFleur reportedly tore his Achilles’ tendon on Friday playing basketball at Lambeau Field.
LaFleur will almost certainly be in a cart for the team’s mandatory minicamp from June 11-13 and will have to use crutches during the recovery process.
LaFleur came to Packers in the offseason to take over for Mike McCarthy, the coach the previous 13 seasons in Green Bay. He was previously the offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans.
“He’s a great football coach,” McVay said of LaFleur. “Got a great understanding from offensive football. Really, he’s just such a great guy, where he cares about people. He’s going to be honest with his communication.
LaFleur, a former quarterback at Saginaw Valley State, has had a hands-on approach during the Green Bay’s offseason program. That will have to be on hold for now, at least while the rookie head coach is on the road to recovery.
NFL teams have a long history of trying to limit what players do away from the football field to prevent injury. Basketball has been one of those activities and it made headlines earlier this year with the Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes.
A highlight of Mahomes went viral and the Chiefs were quick to act.
“We spoke to Pat Mahomes’ agent and said Chiefs Kingdom can be assured there will be no more basketball for Pat,” Chiefs General Manager Brett Veach said. “We were able to nip that in the bud.”
According to Pro Football Talk, the Standard Player Contract contains broad language when it comes to activities away from the field.
“Without prior written consent of the Club, Player will not play football or engage in activities related to football otherwise than for Club or engage in any activity other than football which may involve a significant risk of personal injury.”
“Haha yeah that’s gonna work,” 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman said on Twitter. “If they don’t want him hooping then put it in the contract. It’s not there so he can do as he pleases. Most players do.”
Of course, it’s a whole different ball game when you’re dealing with a head coach. LaFleur’s injury will make his job tougher, sure. But he still brings the same skill set to the table.