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McCarthy Says James Starks is the No. 1 Back

James Starks

We pretty much already knew this, but Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy made it official on Wednesday. James Starks is the team’s No. 1 running back.

“I would say he’s our No. 1 back right now. He played well and deserves that opportunity,” McCarthy said. “I’ve not big believer in riding one back. We’ll go with a one-two punch.”

Starks has outgained Eddie Lacy this season 334 yards to 308 yards. He’s also averaging 4.3 yards per carry to Lacy’s 3.7.

Everyone has been wondering what’s wrong with Lacy, but it’s more a symptom of what’s wrong with the play calling. As we detailed on Tuesday, the Packers haven’t called more than 19 designed runs in a game since week 4.

Not coincidentally, Lacy had his best game of the season that same week, with 90 yards on 18 carries.

Frankly, we really don’t care who the No. 1 back is. Both guys are capable.

What we care about is that the Packers show some commitment to the run and running fewer than 20 times a game isn’t going to get any running back going.

Thankfully, we’re not the only ones who’ve noticed that.

“We have a new plan this week. I’ve rarely been around a team that’s been able to run with such few attempts. The number of opportunities is important,” McCarthy said.

No shit.

Monty McMahon

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



  1. Shawn November 11, 2015

    The Packers haven’t been running the ball because every defense since the 49ers has loaded the box with 8 guys consistently, sometimes more. It is stupid to run against that unless you have at least 7 to block with.
    That leaves the Packers with 2 options to get their running game going.
    1) Throw the ball downfield and complete some passes, which will hopefully force defenses into fewer 1 and 0 looks. Or
    2) Play more 2 TE or 2 FB formations to give yourself enough blockers to run against 8 defenders. The Packers need Quarless back for that since he is the only TE on the roster who is even mediocre at blocking.

    1. PF4L November 11, 2015

      It’s sad but true, when we look forward to having Quarless back for his blocking. That tells you what you need to know about DickRodg. not so sure why Rodgers was so high on this dude. DickRodg couldn’t block my grandma, and she’s 91.

  2. jtmax November 11, 2015

    Good point shawn. I also would point oit that bulaga can’t run block either so that makes it tough. Starks also tends to get hurt when he starts so lacy will get his chance.

  3. Salazar November 11, 2015

    In regards to your second point, with Quarless coming back I would imagine that is the “new plan” MM is talking about.

  4. Salazar November 11, 2015

    Meant for that to be a reply to Shawn, but the mobile version of this site doesn’t seem to allow that.

  5. TyKo Steamboat November 11, 2015

    Are those rushing #’s correct?!?!

    Starks only has 26 more yards?!?! Feels like a lot more.
    Starks must have that proper pad level….

  6. campack November 11, 2015

    I think it’s total bullshit what fat ass Mike has done to Lacy. What did he take away from the pass game? No he made the pass game WORK. He is a north and south runner, so don’t just stack up and tell the defence, i’m gonna give the ball to Eddy, and he is gonna run at the 1 hole. Show pass, and blast them up the middle. The man made Arrons job easy, because the defence had to be ready for both. In closeing, i hate that fat fat bastard, Mike M.

  7. campack November 11, 2015

    I forgot, Lacys first 3 seasons were alllllllllllll over 1000 yards. Yep. He has to go. What a bunch of dick bags

  8. Salazar November 11, 2015

    I’m sure we’ll get Monty’s opinion tomorrow, but I really liked the “team first” attitude Eddie showed when he was interviewed about the demotion. Others seem to be taking it as a ho-hum attitude and think he doesn’t care, but that was not what I gleaned from it at all.