Montgomery capably handled the lead role late last season, with his emergence as a dual running/receiving threat helping the Green Bay offense find its form down the stretch. Despite having proof that the offense can thrive while deploying an undersized converted receiver as its lead back, the Packers figure to have serious interest in the top runners in the upcoming draft. The team might also consider adding a veteran free agent, but either way, Montgomery figures to have more competition than what is currently on the roster. That may not be a bad thing for Montgomery, who also thrived last season while rotating between running back and wide receiver. It isn't hard to envision him serving as something along the lines of a No. 2 running back and No. 4 wide receiver at the same time.
Head coach Mike McCarthy stated Thursday that
Although the Packers considered moving Montgomery to running back in the preseason -- if McCarthy is to be believed -- the move wasn't implemented until the need arose in Week 7. By that point in the season, Eddie Lacy was carrying the ankle injury that would bring his campaign to a close, while James Starks was recovering from surgery on a torn meniscus. As the year wore on, Montgomery was a hybrid threat, earning double-digit touches in six of his final 13 appearances (including postseason). Both rushing and pass catching will characterize his role in 2017, but the nominal ground threat is to be determined due to the impending unrestricted free agency of Lacy.
Montgomery went down in the first half with an unspecified injury to his ribs and did not return, finishing the game with 17 rushing yards across three totes. Christine Michael took over as the lead back in his absence. While the
Montgomery gained 47 yards and scored two touchdowns on 11 rushes and secured six of seven targets for 34 yards in Sunday's 34-31 divisional-round win over the Cowboys.
Montgomery wasn't leaned on as much in the running game as the Packers had hinted he might be during the week, but he proved to be very effective when he did carry the ball. The versatile second-year pro notched a pair of short touchdowns in the second quarter to give the Packers what was a commanding 21-3 lead at the time. He was also a dependable option for Aaron Rodgers in the short passing game, moving the chains on more than one occasion and catching all but one of the seven looks he received. Montgomery now has 11 carries in each of Green Bay's first two preseason games, while also notching nine receptions.
Montgomery (ankle) was a full practice participant Wednesday, Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com reports.
There was worry in Green Bay after Montgomery was crunched on a fourth-quarter carry Sunday against the Giants, but his ability to return for one last rush portended participation in the first practice of divisional-round preparation. Avoiding Wednesday's injury report entirely was surprising, though, due to the nature of the punishing tackle. Expect Montgomery to get the nod at running back this Sunday in Dallas, against whom he should receive double-digit touches, as he has in each of the last five outings (including playoffs).
|2015||Green Bay Packers||6||3||3||14||4.7||9||0||0||0|
|2016||Green Bay Packers||15||6||77||457||5.9||61||3||5||20|
|2015||Green Bay Packers||6||3||15||136||9.1||31||2||1||0||6|
|2016||Green Bay Packers||15||6||44||348||7.9||24||0||1||0||19|
|2015||Green Bay Packers||6||7||218||31.1||46||0||2|
|2016||Green Bay Packers||15||18||366||20.3||40||0||1|
|2015||Green Bay Packers||6||0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2016||Green Bay Packers||15||1||1.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2015||Green Bay Packers||6||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|2016||Green Bay Packers||15||2||1||0||0||0||0||0||0|