Tuesday, September 6, 2011
BBAO: Split workload with Grant and Starks
By Kevin Seifert
We're Black and Blue All Over:
How will the Green Bay Packers split carries between what amounts to their co-starting running backs? As equally as possible, according to Lori Nickel of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Here's what running backs coach Jerry Fontenot said: "They're both going to take pretty much all situations in the game. Evenly dispersed? I can't guarantee it. But I'm certainly going try to get each one of those guys an equal amount of opportunities to carry the football, to hold onto the football and to control the clock for us."
Obviously, the Packers aren't going to telegraph their game plan a few days before Thursday's preseason game against the New Orleans Saints. The truth is that Ryan Grant carried more in the preseason as the Packers tried to gauge his return from season-ending ankle surgery. But coach Mike McCarthy is clearly enamored with second-year back James Starks. I think the Packers will look for every opportunity to get Starks involved as often as possible, whether or not he is in the game on the first play as an official starter.
Continuing around the NFC North on back-to-school day for many of you:
- Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette: "When Aaron Rodgers opens his garage door every morning, he sees a Ferrari and a Lamborghini; a Corvette and a Mustang; a BMW and a Porsche. His garage is his playbook. His Ferrari is Greg Jennings, and his Lamborghini is Jermichael Finley; his Corvette is Donald Driver, and his Mustang is James Jones; his BMW is Jordy Nelson, and his Porsche is Randall Cobb. His biggest problem is deciding which key chain to grab. It's the NFL's version of 'Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.'"
- Packers defensive lineman B.J. Raji isn't lobbying for a reprise role as a fullback, writes Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com.
- Kudos to Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz for not obsessing over 87-degree weather forecasted for the team's season opener in Tampa Bay. Asked if he would try to simulate the heat by cranking the temperature in the team's indoor practice facility, Schwartz said, via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press: "That's foolishness. We don't pipe in crowd noise, and we don't open up the doors and make it cold, and we don't try to smoke the team out. It's just a bunch of foolishness."
- Schwartz told Lions players they have a chance to be the best team he has ever been involved with, writes John Niyo of the Detroit News.
- New Lions running back Keiland Williams has some similarities with injured rookie Mikel Leshoure, writes Philip Zaroo of Mlive.com.
- Running back Marion Barber (calf) is the main injury concern for the Chicago Bears this week, writes Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com.
- Bears teammates aren't worried about the commitment of linebacker Lance Briggs, who has asked to be traded. Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune has more.
- Kent Youngblood of the Star Tribune profiles Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Letroy Guion, the likely replacement for suspended defensive tackle Kevin Williams.
- Jeremy Fowler of the St. Paul Pioneer Press looks back at Vikings tailback Adrian Peterson's record of 296 yards against the San Diego Chargers in 2007. The Vikings open this season against the Chargers on Sunday.
- The Vikings re-signed tight end Allen Reisner to their practice squad, notes 1500ESPN.com.