The Packers’ tight-end production has fallen off significantly since the 2013 career-ending neck injury to Jermichael Finley, who averaged 12.5 yards per catch in his six seasons.
“That’s always been a thing that we focus on every single year, it’s been yards after contact,” Packers tight ends coach Jerry Fontenot said this week. “We haven’t been as good as we have been in previous years. That seemed to be something that Jermichael was especially good at. Our expectations were high, and I think we’re very capable of breaking tackles and gaining extra yardage and to do it to the best of our ability is all we ask. I don’t expect to turn anybody into something that they’re not, but we can definitely improve on.”
Andrew Quarless, who hasn’t played since his Week 3 knee injury, could help. But given that he has only two catches for 14 yards this season, he’s not likely to surpass Rodgers in terms of receptions.
Quarless' career average of 10.6 yards per catch includes an 11.1-yard average last season, when he caught 29 passes and three touchdowns (including the last-second game winner at Miami).