Marshawn, As Long As You're In Town...Posted:Sep 14th, 2010 7:23 pm
The loss of Ryan Grant is significant for the Pack, but a not a death knell to the team's Super Bowl aspirations. Who knows, maybe Brandon Jackson will make like Dorsey Levens, who replaced an injured Edgar Bennett at the beginning of '97 and the Pack returned to the Super Bowl.
I thought about this as I drove back to my office: if you had to choose one offensive starter to be lost for the season after week 1, who would you choose? Where would Grant rank? The starters I would rather not lose than Grant include Rodgers, Jennings, Finley, Clifton, Tauscher and Sitton. So Grant is right in the middle when it comes to his value to the offense.
Clearly, the decision to cut Kregg Lumpkin is coming back to haunt the Pack, who need to find another legit running back to complement Jackson. And no, I'm not referring to anyone on the current roster or practice squad.
I'd also rather avoid the heap of has-beens who are waiting for a call: guys like Willie Parker and Justin Fargas. I'd look to an AFC team that is deep at RB, who would be willing to swing a deal for a draft pick or an offensive lineman.
The Bills come to mind first. With rookie CJ Spiller and Fred Jackson, they have two good young backs. The problematic former #1 pick Marshawn Lynch needs a fresh start and could probably be had fairly cheaply. Since the Bills are playing at Lambeau this week, sounds like a cozy time to swing a deal.
Houston's Steve Slaton would also be interesting, since the Texans have a similar ground game to Green Bay and saw Arian Foster explode onto the scene in week 1. Unfortunately, the injury to their second round pick Ben Tate leaves them thin if they deal Slaton, who can't seem to hold onto the ball after a strong debut a couple of years ago.
There are other teams deep at running back, including the Cowboys. I hope the Pack makes a strong move here and adds some talent to the roster. We can all hope that Brandon Jackson grabs the job and runs with it. But if he doesn't, it will put a lot of undue pressure on the passing game and threaten what could be a Super season.
Update: Packers have signed rookie Dimitri Nance off the Falcons peactice squad. He's an undrafted rookie out of Arizona State, whom the Falcons were apparently high on. With Turner, Norwood and Snelling ahead of him on the depth chart, he obviously sees a better opportunity in Green Bay. Still time to make a deal in the next 3-4 weeks if the running game is faltering.