In a short week and recent COVID-19 news, who will be running the ball for Green Bay?
The Green Bay Packers are fighting in a battle for domination in the NFC. Thursday’s showdown against the San Francisco 49ers might give fans a better look at their ceiling in their race for the conference title.
Slight problem; they’ll have one leg tied behind their back in a foot race to victory…literally. Green Bay’s offense might be relying on a passing attack with the recent news of their running backs missing time.
Both AJ Dillon and Jamaal Williams will be out after being placed on the COIVD-19/reserve list earlier this week. Aaron Jones, the team’s top runner, has been out since Week 7 after suffering a calf injury in practice. His status is listed as questionable entering late Wednesday night.
If the Packers are without their top three options, can they win on the ground? More importantly, who’s going to get the starting nod?
What do the Packers have at running back against the 49ers?
Green Bay won’t be able to head to the free-agent market to add another name due to the COVID-19 protocol to join a team. This means practice squad members Tyler Ervin and Dexter Williams will likely be splitting carries in what could only be a limited role.
Ervin, who is best known for his time with the Texans’ punt returner, has been taken reps with the wide receiver room this season as a last resort in the passing game. In fact, he has 43 rushing yards on four attempts while 33 yards have come off six catches.
Williams, who’s best known for his days at Notre Dame, could be a surprise or bust against the 49ers defense. Spending the season on the practice squad, the 23-year-old has played multiple roles, helping the defense prepare for Sunday’s against offenses.
Last season in limited snaps, Williams rushed a total of five times for 11 yards.
The one solstice for the Packers is the limited offense of San Francisco. Both Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle will be out for potentially the remainder of the season after leaving Sunday with lower-body injuries. On Tuesday, the team announced both wide receiver Debo Samuel and running back Tevin Coleman would be out due to a short week. And to make matters worse, offensive tackle Trent Williams and wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk were placed on the reverse/COVID-19 list Wednesday evening.
Green Bay’s offense should dismantle the bad news 49ers thanks to a plethora of injuries on both sides. However, if needing a running back off waivers, it’s best to avoid this game altogether, especially on the Packers’ side.