GREEN BAY – If Geronimo Allison plays Sunday in his first game since being added to the Green Bay Packers 53-man roster, special teams likely will be his path to the field.
Allison is at the bottom of the Packers' receiver depth chart after replacing Jared Abbreders, who was waived with an injury settlement Thursday. Even with Ty Montgomery expected to play more running back than receiver, Allison is the Packers’ sixth wideout.
The Packers have played the sixth receiver on their depth chart nine snaps in the first six games. That’s roughly 2 percent of their overall snaps. In half their games, the Packers haven’t played a sixth receiver.
So the question is what Allison brings to the Packers' special teams.
“It’s a little different,” special teams coordinator Ron Zook said, “because he’s a long, high-waisted guy. He can do a lot of the same things that Jeff does, probably a lot of the same places.”
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Allison measured 6-foot-3 and 196 pounds at the NFL combine. His size gives him an advantage as a receiver, but he doesn’t have much straight-line speed. Allison clocked a 4.67-second, 40-yard dash in Indianapolis.
His lack of straight-line speed makes Zook’s comparison to Janis surprising. While Janis’ 6-foot-3, 219-pound frame is similar to Allison's, he ran a 4.42-second dash at the combine.
Regardless, Zook said Allison could line up at gunner on punt coverage Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, and potentially fill blocking roles on punt return and kickoff return.
“Kickoff,” Zook said, “we’ll just give him a spot and run down there real fast and try to make something happen. Since he’s been here, he’s been a hard-working guy, a lot of effort.”