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The Green Bay Packers will be without a significant player when they face the Vikings in Minnesota on Dec. 31. Cornerback Jaire Alexander has been suspended for one game by the team for conduct detrimental to the team, general manager Brian Gutekunst announced Wednesday. The suspension stems from Alexander's actions during the coin flip ahead of their Week 16 win over the Carolina Panthers. 

Green Bay has formally placed Alexander on its reserve/suspended list. 

"The decision to suspend a player is never easy and not one we take lightly. Unfortunately, Jaire's actions prior to the game in Carolina led us to take this step," Gutekunst said. "As an organization, we have an expectation that everyone puts the team first. While we are disappointed, we had a good conversation with Jaire this morning and fully expect him to learn from this as we move forward together. 

"We look forward to welcoming him back next week as he is a valued member of this team and will continue to be in the future."

Alexander committed a crucial mistake during the Packers' win over the Panthers that led to the suspension. 

 After surprising team captains Aaron Jones , Eric Wilson and Quay Walker at midfield for the coin toss, Alexander called tails and elected to be on defense instead of deferring after winning the toss. The official asked Alexander to clarify, and by doing so, saved the Packers from possibly losing a possession.

"I said, 'I want our defense to be out there,' and they all looked at me like I was crazy," Alexander said when asked about his gaffe, via ESPN. "I'm like, I mean it's pretty simple what I said, like I want the defense to be out there. They like, 'You mean defer?' and I'm like, 'Yeah, I guess.'"

Alexander's actions were criticized afterward by Packers coach Matt LaFleur, who called it "a big mistake." 

"That's something that you review with the guys," LaFleur said, "before they go out there every time about, 'Hey, we win the toss, we're going to defer.' I went to the officials before the game, made sure they knew what we were going to do. We had an incident earlier this year where we had a similar situation, so always trying to be proactive in that approach."

This past week was Alexander's first game back after being sidelined for six games with a shoulder injury. The 26-year-old is coming off his second Pro Bowl season after picking off five passes last season. 

Green Bay (7-8) needs to leapfrog Atlanta (7-8), Minnesota (7-8) and Seattle (8-7) over the season's final two weeks in order to secure a playoff berth. The Packers expect to have Alexander back in the fold when Green Bay hosts the Bears in Week 18. They won't, however, have Alexander Sunday when they face a Vikings offense that boasts a talented receiving trio that is led by three-time Pro Bowler Justin Jefferson