Packers respond to Za’Darius Smith’s claim he was treated poorly in GB last year

Smith says after last year’s back surgery he felt treated poorly
Za'Darius Smith
Za'Darius Smith(WBAY)
Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 6:32 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - From the moment Za’Darius Smith signed with the rival Vikings and the NFL schedule came out, we knew Week 1 would be juicy. '

And, sure enough, here we are with the former “Captain Z” making some comments about his tenure in Titletown. Smith told Go Long’s Tyler Dunne that after last year’s in-season back surgery he felt he was treated poorly by the team. Smith felt like he was treated like a nobody when he was around Green Bay’s facility following that operation and those feelings led to him signing with Minnesota.

“I was treated bad,” Smith told Dunne. “That’s why I’m here now. So, I can play them twice a year.”

Smith played in Week 1 last year, but then had back surgery, and did not play again until the playoffs.

As for the Packers response to their former teammate...

“I respect the crap out of Z as a player,” said head coach Matt LaFleur. “He busted his butt and did a lot of great things. I think we may have a different perspective of how things transpired. I will just leave it at that.”

“I was made aware of that,” Aaron Rodgers said. “I don’t want to add any fuel to the fire. I will just echo exactly what Matt said.”

“I felt like we interacted pretty well,” said defensive lineman Kenny Clark. “His feelings are his feelings. I can’t speak on how he feels. But I know I treated him well.”

“He is entitled to his opinion on what happened to him personally and himself,” said safety Adrian Amos. “People are going to have conflicting opinions. But that’s how he felt and that’s really over with now.”

“When it comes to Z, the role that he played was a big brother role,” said outside linebacker Rashan Gary. “Just in terms of how I would reach out to him for things and information on the football field. But in terms of his experience, I can’t really speak to it.”