Sneaking Up on Defenses, Until He’s Past Them

Eleven games into his breakout season, Green Bay Packers receiver Jordy Nelson did not need a calculator or even his fingers to count the number of times that he had faced double coverage this year.

“I would say never,” he said this week. “Not that I know of.”

It seems improbable. Nelson, remember, had nine catches for 140 yards and a touchdown in Green Bay’s Super Bowl victory last season. His 21 postseason catches earned him a share of the franchise record with Greg Jennings. This season, Nelson has developed into a serious threat for the undefeated Packers, with more receiving touchdowns (nine) than in his previous three seasons combined (six). Two have gone for more than 80 yards.

So why are opposing defenses not focusing on him more?

Two weeks ago, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers offered a frank theory on his Tuesday afternoon radio show: because Nelson is white.

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