GREEN BAY, Wis. — Green Bay Packers receiver Devin Funchess, who had first-hand experience with COVID-19 this offseason while caring for family members with the disease, has opted out of the 2020 season.
The 26-year-old veteran was the only experienced addition the Packers made to their receiving corps, which was viewed as one of the few weaknesses on a team that reached the NFC Championship last season. He signed a one-year, $2.5 million deal that included a $1 million signing bonus after a lost year with the Colts in 2019, when he suffered a broken collarbone in Week 1.
Funchess canceled several scheduled media opportunities shortly after he signed with the Packers because of what sources said at the time was the need to care for family members diagnosed with COVID-19.
In an Instagram post on Tuesday, Funchess said in part: “My closest family members have experienced the life-threatening impact of COVID-19 first hand and for their own safety and my own safety, I’ve decided to opt out of the upcoming NFL season. This was not a decision I took lightly but it’s what is best for my family and myself at this time.”
Funchess, whose best seasons came with the Carolina Panthers, was in the mix to compete to be the No. 2 or No. 3 receiver behind Pro Bowler Davante Adams. After signing Funchess, the Packers passed on receivers in one of the deepest receiver drafts in history.
Funchess was placed on the reserve/opt-out list, which allows the Packers to retain him under the same contract for the 2021 season. The Packers also placed first-year outside linebacker Greg Roberts on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday. Packers veteran players reported to Lambeau Field on Tuesday for their first round of COVID-19 testing.