Matchup 2: Lions WR DJ Chark vs. Packers CB Jaire Alexander
Alexander is the embodiment of the Green Bay Packers. Talented yes, but brash, arrogant, and above all else, very cocky. He was in Justin Jefferson’s face all game long in Week 17. Even going so far as to hit the griddy right in front of him after a nice pass breakup early in the game. He believes in his play and he is not afraid to tell you about how great he is.
In Week 9, Alexander traveled into the slot a few times to cover Amon-Ra St. Brown, due to injuries to the Lions’ outside receivers. That proved to be very effective, as Alexander’s physical play caused problems, he had an interception (the most recent Jared Goff has thrown). Now in the finale, the Lions’ perimeter receivers are healthy. Alexander will see a wide range of players line up against him, but Chark will likely be the most frequent adversary.
Obviously, Chark will not get the same defensive attention Jefferson faced a week ago. There will be less safety help and more one-on-one matchups with Alexander. Simply put, Chark is going to have to beat Alexander a few times and make some plays.
Chark has been able to beat the corners he’s lined up against a fair amount as of late, as the deep threat the Lions’ envisioned when they signed him, and he needs to continue that late-season success in Week 18.