The Green Bay Packers have announced that running back James Starks may be healthy enough to play against the San Francisco 49ers this week.
It would be the first time he’s played since Dec. 2, when he sustained a knee bruise.
I can hear the collective “so what?”
Can’t say I feel any different. A lot of things have happened since Starks went down.
Paramount among those has been the emergence of DuJuan Harris, who has taken over and solidified his role as the Packers lead dog in the running game. It doesn’t seem possible the Packers would consider subbing Starks for Harris now.
Second, was the signing of Ryan Grant. Although Grant has made little to no impact, the Packers clearly favor him over any other running back on the roster not named Harris. The team has been increasing his workload since he signed and Grant now appears to be the clear No. 2 option.
Consider — Alex Green has been healthy the past two weeks and hasn’t touched the ball.
So what might happen with Starks this week? We see two possibilities.
First, this is all just hubbub from the coaching staff, which wants to make the 49ers prepare for another back at the last minute, and Starks will end up being inactive.
Second is Starks actually is active and takes Grant’s role. Let’s be honest — at this point in their careers, Starks is the faster and stronger runner. Both guys are a change of pace from Harris, but we’re guessing Starks can probably do better than the seven yards on seven carries Grant had last week.
Something to keep an eye on.