Green Bay Packers Lead the League in Injures Past Two Seasons

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Randall Cobb injury

Randall Cobb injury

You know how the Green Bay Packers are always down like 17 guys at any point during the regular season? Well, Rick Gosselin has gone and counted up all of the games missed by starters because of injury.

Not surprisingly, the Green Bay Packers lead the league in that category over the past two seasons. Perhaps surprisingly, they weren’t first this year.

The Packers finished fifth in games lost by starters in 2013, with 70 games lost. These teams had more or the same number: New York Giants (91), Indianapolis (83), New England (74), Atlanta (72), Tampa Bay (70).

Interestingly, two of the teams ahead of Green Bay were also playoff teams. Of course, neither of them lost their franchise quarterback for any games and therefore had much better records than the Packers.

The Packers’ two season NFL-leading total of starters’  games lost to injury is 153. But you already knew there’s an injury epidemic in Green Bay. Especially when it comes to pulled hammys…

We’ll break this down a little further. Here are the number of games missed by the Packers starters or projected starters.

16 — Bryan Bulaga
10 — Jermichael Finley
10 — Randall Cobb
7 — Aaron Rodgers
5 — Clay Matthews
5 — Nick Perry
4 — Brad Jones
3 — Johnny Jolly
3 — Morgan Burnett
2 — Sam Shields
2 — Don Barclay
2 — James Jones
1 — Eddie Lacy

Imagine if the Packers only lost 20 games by starters to injury like the New York Jets did this year.

Some things, like the broken bones Rodgers, Matthews and Cobb suffered happen on freak plays, but feel free to sound off on the training staff.

About The Author

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

19 Comments on "Green Bay Packers Lead the League in Injures Past Two Seasons"

  1. Steve

    And this doesn’t even include DuJuan Harris who missed 16 games after being the #1 RB on the depth chart before week 1.

  2. the real russ letlow

    what about games missed by the fill ins for the starters who were injured? Particularly the linebackers. When they stepped up, they were in effect the starter. We had a crapper full of those injuries too. injuries suck. we’ve had more than our fair share. someone else needs to lead the league next year.

  3. Richard

    Maybe this is the primary reason Ted avoids Free Agency. No sense in bringing a guy in if he gets slightly overpaid and is stuck in a hospital bed by week 6 because our conditioning coaches are idiots

  4. Savage57

    Must be the humidity. WTF, that makes as much sense as any of the other BS that we’ll hear trotted out when the “strength and conditioning” coach shows up again next year and the Packers litter the playing field like Scots after the rising at Culloden.

  5. Dr. Howard

    I’d like to see the total number of games missed by starters and key contributors. I’m sure we would lead the league. The article says we led the league the two prior years (2011 and 2012). I’m pretty sure we didn’t lead the league in 2011 which was the lockout year when we had no offseason strength and conditioning program. That was actually a very healthy year as I recall. But 2010 (the Super Bowl year) was a completely different story. We led the league that year for sure with 15 guys on IR. So 3 out of 4 years we pretty much lead the league in injuries, but the one year we didn’t was the year we didn’t have an offseason program. This ain’t rocket science. There is something seriously wrong with our strength and conditioning programming. To say otherwise, as McCarthy does routinely, is to spout bullshit into the fans ears. TT and MM have to produce a product (including an actual defense), that doesn’t treat us to 2-5 starters going down nearly every game. God, when we lose only one guy per game, I’m relieved. McCarthy has to be dumb or think we are fools to pretend that all these injuries are just by statistical chance alone. I call bullshit.

  6. CB

    Heyward, not in these numbers either. I realize as a slot corner he may not be listed officially as a starter, but would actually play more snaps than the starter listed in front of him.
    Hmmmm,
    Top 3 NFL QB
    Top 5 TE
    Top 10 WR
    Best defensive player on the team
    Best O Lineman on the team
    Best Ball hawk (int leader) on the team
    …all miss significant time…
    And we still made the playoffs.

    And people continue to say TT is doing a horrible job and his system sucks.
    I wonder how screwed we would be without depth. Free agency purging has quick benefit,,,but it comes at the sacrifice of depth. Just ask the falcons.

    Thanks for documenting this injury information. Sometimes you wonder If you are pitying your team’s injuries and maybe things are just as bad everywhere else. When it’s factually compared, it affirms the challenges we’ve faced for several years in a row.

  7. Garvis

    NFL organizations are very detailed and the people who run them know more about football than any of us ever will. If there was something the Packers could do to fix this easily, they would. In my opinion, it has nothing to do with drafting players and I bet the conditioning program is sound. Some injuries like Rodgers and Matthews are freak. All the hammys is weird. I bet this has more to do with the CBA limiting the practice regimes than anythig else. You cannot prepare for explosive, violent athetic moves by going half speed and/or non contact workouts. When the players do get uneashed their bodies are not properly prepared. You simply cannot condition your way into game shape. That makes sense to me. I bet if coach was able to conduct more full speed padded practices we’d see less injuries.

    That or the pad level is too high.

  8. Phatgzus

    If only we could turn all our players into cyborgs by fusing them with Nokia parts, but that’d probably be considered an “unfair competitive advantage” and an act of “moral turpitude”.

  9. This thread identifies precisely why our season was disappointing. Far too many injuries to vital players. When healthy, I believe this team is imposing on both sides of the ball. What’s the solution to this disturbing trend? I have no idea.

  10. Icebowler

    It seems to me that a large percentage of college players don’t last more than a year or two in the NFL due to injuries. This is the major downside to the Draft and Develop system. Most third or forth year free agents are valued, in part, because they have proven that their bodies can endure the rigors of the big league. I think that TT’s refusal to dip into the free agent market, at least a little bit, has contributed to our high injury numbers in three out of the past four seasons. I also argue that our Strength and Conditioning team has been sub-standard. In most game this year, we’ve run out of gas and have been getting our butt kicked in the 4th quarter. If we were strong and conditioned, that shouldn’t happen!

  11. Wes

    Coach Lombardi would be appalled!

    “You’ve got to be in top physical condition. Fatigue makes cowards of us all.”

    “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.”

    Or maybe he understands too… :)

    “I have been wounded but not yet slain. I shall lie here and bleed awhile. Then I shall rise and fight again. The title of champion may from time to time fall to others more than ourselves. But the heart, the spirit, and the soul of champions remains in Green Bay.”

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