The Green Bay Packers have never been known for their running game. Their running backs in the past haven’t been that outstanding. They have always been known for their tremendous quarterbacks, wide receivers, and defense. Even the Packers kickers have had more fame than the running backs. Few of them have had big names, but as soon as they wear the green and gold jersey, they slip away.
The Packers have never had a running back break a game wide open.
They have never been able to faithfully and honestly rely on a player at the halfback position to carry the team. The Pack have never been given the chance to be dangerous at that position, until now.
The Green Bay Packers have not one, not two, not even three, but four players on the everyday squad that will help bring that halfback position some threats. The players running the ball will help confuse defenses and open up big passing plays down field. It has been a proven fact that when a team’s offense has a playmaker/playmakers at running back, the passing game excels. Offenses are more open to play-action and big gains through the air.
James Starks is one of these four players. After his college career with Buffalo, Starks was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He is a 3-year pro, with some amazing playing time during the XLV playoff and Super Bowl games. He did not get much playing time in ’10 season, but played in 13 games in 2011. His skill grew during the offseason, and looks to be the main starter. Coming into this year, James Starks is the Packers number one halfback on the depth charts. Look for him to work hard to maintain the starter.
Brandon Saine is our next running back who will be sharing the ball with James Starks. Fresh out of Ohio State, he came into the league as an undrafted free agent and made the Packers’ squad in 2011. Although his playing time was short, he displayed that he could be a great running back for the future. Brandon has been showing some great strides in his quickness and his ability to shoot through the holes. Although Saine is very fast in a dead sprint, maturity with the football will gain him more playing time. Look for his playing time to grow throughout the season.
John Kuhn has become one of the crowd’s favorites. Although he is typically known as a fullback, Kuhn has been known to line up in the halfback position. Coming into the league after graduating from Shippensburg College, he joined the Steelers as an undrafted free agent in 2005 and won the XL Super Bowl. He joined the Pack in 2007 and has been best known for his ability to get the extra yard. He will be used for the short runs and blocking, but his presence on the field is more than electrifying for fans and players. On third and short, who runs the ball better than the pro-bowler, John Kuhn?
The final running back that will share the ball this season is Alex Green. Green was voted one of the best running backs in the 2011 draft. Coming out of the University of Hawaii, he was drafted by Green Bay in the third round. With only 4 games under his belt due to injury, he has much maturing to do, but at this time Alex Green will get many opportunities to get more playing time. Coming off his injury, Green is looking to be faster, quicker, and stronger with the ball, which is what Green Bay will need out of their running backs this season. He and Starks will get the most time with the ball out of these players.
Green Bay might not be known for having one single extraordinary halfback, but the four players the Pack will have this season will most definitely get the job done. They will open up more room for Aaron Rodgers to make more plays with his arm, his feet, and play-action. These men will keep defenses honest, which will give Jennings, Driver, Nelson, Finely, Cobb, and the rest of Rodgers’ weapons time to move and get open. This powerful run game will help Green Bay’s offense and make them even more dangerous.
- Cameron Black
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