2017 is just not the Packers’ year. Green Bay’s 4-1 start quickly dropped to a 4-4 record after Aaron Rodgers was lost for the bulk of the season due to a broken collarbone. That put even more pressure on an emerging running back corps — which lost its two best players Sunday.
Aaron Jones, the team’s leading rusher, was carted to the locker room after suffering a leg injury in the first quarter of his team’s game against Chicago. A quarter later, he was joined on the trainer’s bench by another running back, Ty Montgomery.
That leaves Green Bay with only one healthy tailback on the roster — rookie Jamaal Williams. The Packers can also turn to fullback Aaron Ripkowski, but the burly blocker has just two carries for six yards this fall.
What this means for the Packers: This is bad. Green Bay needs all the offensive help it can get to support Brett Hundley, who has underwhelmed in relief of Rodgers and has just 86 yards passing at the half. Montgomery and Jones looked capable of shouldering that load — Jones was averaging 5.3 yards per carry in his first season as a pro and Montgomery ripped off a 37-yard run that serves as the game’s only touchdown so far. Instead, those duties will fall to Williams, a 2017 fourth-round pick, who entered the game with 11 carries for 34 yards this season.
What this means for Jones and Montgomery: Jones will have to hope his injury isn’t serious enough to cost him time beyond Sunday’s game with the Bears. He’ll be fully evaluated after the game. Montgomery’s status is more fluid. If he can get back on the field for the second half, he’ll be Green Bay’s go-to back and the only safety valve for an otherwise ineffective offense.