Ty Montgomery is the Better Fit

With the NFL free agency less than a month away we still have no indicationĀ as to whether Eddie Lacy will be a Packer next season. The injuries and weight concerns have been the surrounding narrative for Lacy the past two seasons. He was starting to look like the Lacy of oldĀ through five weeks of 2016 but an ankle injury pushed him to the IR and required surgery. The Packers were in desperate need of a rushing threat so they turned to kick return specialist Ty Montgomery who played wide receiver his entire collegiate and professional career. The element of surprise by having Montgomery in the backfield kept defenses guessing. Is he going to bust through a hole or catch a quick hitter from Rodgers for quick easy yards? Montgomery’s speed and versatility is becoming a better fit for the tempo of the Packers offense than a heavy footed Lacy.

When Lacy was placed on injured reserve the Packers were desperate for a replacement. They traded for Kniles Davis who lasted only two weeks and signed Christine Michael off waivers from Seattle. Neither player was or is the answer for the Packers going forward.

However, it appears Montgomery is. His impact on the offense was felt immediately. He averaged 5.9 yards per rush in 2016 compared to Lacy’s career average of 4.4. The Packers offense won more time of possession battles and worked their way up and down the field more fluidly with Montgomery in the backfield. Instead of waiting for Lacy to catch his breathe after a pin ball run for 8 yards, Montgomery was quick to the huddle to catch a pass out of the backfield and keep the defense on its heels. Something Lacy is not capable of.

Expect Lacy to want to be paid for his body of work the past four years. His ability to fight for yards after contact and make plays out of nothing are second to none. But, his weight and health are a concern for possible suitors. The best the Packers could do for Lacy is offer him a one year deal to see if he can prove he belongs. Can he keep his weight down and is his style of running something the Packers can lean on?

These questions have to be answered in a short period of time and Ted Thompson may not want to wait. Thompson is signed to a contract that will expire at the of the 2018 season. Ted wants to win now and Montgomery is less of a gamble.

Sticking with Montgomery will give the Packers a chance to figure what they want to do with their run game while he is still on his rookie contract. It is highly possible they will draft a running back as well to have more solidarity behind Montgomery.

The future will prove that Montgomery is the perfect fit given his ingenuity. He can run between the tackles, catch passes out of the backfield, and line up as a wide receiver. A consummate triple threat. Lacy was a pleasant surprise. His size was intriguing to watch take handoffs but his skills are best suited elsewhere.

 

 

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Brandon Carwile was a cheese head at birth. His dad grew up attending games at Lambeau and passed on the legacy. Brandon graduated from Longwood University in 2016 with a degree in mass media. He has covered the Packers for over a year and currently works with packerstalk.com. Find him on twitter at @BShmee.

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  • shavager

    Disagree on Christine Michael, he has more speed and talent than the recently released James Starks, is FASTER, something Packers need in backfield. Lacy looks to be injury prone, but that’s what some bloggers call ANY player that suffers an injury–is Matthews or Jordy injury prone? How ’bout Rodgers or Cobb, or Adams or Montgomery or Bulaga, Lang?? INJURIES HAPPEN and Packers’ biggest problems have been NO TALENT on bench to compete against starters of opponents. Lacy may return on a cheap offer or WALK for bigger money elsewhere. Either way, Lacy is NOT the solution for Packers making playoffs or SB again–it’s DEFENSE–lack of defense has cost Packers SIX CONSECUTIVE playoff runs–and it’s been LACK of defense that’s given up leads and games. Pack NEEDS a run game to open up Rodgers offense–Montgomery and Michael are faster, mix in with the flow better than the rumbling, bumbling juggernaut Lacy is. Obviously Lacy provides production and ball control, Green Bay can improve run game, unless they can find a solution to WHY DUMB Capers can’t provide REAL defense–it makes no difference if it’s Barry Sanders, Peterson, Hornung-Taylor or Montgomery and Michael–Rodgers will get them to playoffs and DUMB Capers defense will BEAT THEM AGAIN!

    • Brandon Carwile

      Lacy’s injury is more of concern when it’s a foot injury to a 260 pound RUNNING back. Those tends to linger and his commitment is in question. Michael hesitates to find the hole everytime he gets the ball. Rarely follows his blockers.