The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions are both coming off of victories in their Week Three matchups. Both are 2-1 and are the only teams in the NFC North to win a game yet this season. It is clear early on that the division crown will be a race between these to teams, making this game all-the-more important to both teams.
Both teams played on Sunday and have a short turnaround before facing off on Thursday night. This means that the players that are their respective injury reports do not have much time to get healthy before the game.
Lions running back David Montgomery is dealing with a thigh bruise and is considered day-to-day. That being said, there is a high possibility that he may not be able to go on Thursday night. This would be a big blow to the Lions and to Montgomery himself. He is fighting to play against the Packers because this is his best chance to get his first career win against Green Bay.
Lions RB David Montgomery (thigh bruise) says he’s taking it day by day and that if it were up to him, he’d be playing Thursday. Was limited in practice Monday and will see how things go this week.
Says he’s never beaten the Packers before.
“This one would mean a lot to me.”
— Colton Pouncy (@colton_pouncy) September 25, 2023
David Montgomery Has Never Beaten the Green Bay Packers
Prior to signing with the Lions in the offseason, Montgomery was a third round pick by the Chicago Bears in the 2019 NFL Draft. 2019 happens to also coincide with the arrival of Matt LaFleur as the head coach of the Green Bay Packers. As many are aware, Coach LaFleur has never lost to Chicago as the head coach of the Packers (9-0).
Montgomery played in seven of those contests and, of course, went 0-7. He has career averages of 64.9 yards, 4.9 yards per carry, and 0.3 touchdowns per game against the Packers.
The Green Bay Packers Will Have Their Work Cut Out for Them Against the Detroit Lions Even if David Montgomery Does Not Play
Even if Montgomery is unable to play, the Lions have a stout running game thanks to rookie running back Jahmyr Gibbs. Gibbs got his first career start on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons and rushed 17 times for 80 yards (4.7 yards per carry).
Green Bay currently ranks 27th in rush yards allowed per game with 136.7. That stat may be a bit inflated due to the 211 rushing yards they gave up against the Falcons.
It will be up to the defensive front seven, led by Kenny Clark, to slow down the Lions’ run game, whether or not Montgomery plays.
However, that may not be the only problem that they have.
The Green Bay Packers Need Jaire Alexander Back to Cover Amon-Ra St. Brown
Even with Montgomery, the Lions’ offensive strength comes from their passing game. They currently rank seventh in the NFL with 273.0 receiving yards per game. Of course, their top wide receiver is Amon-Ra St. Brown. He has accumulated 21 receptions for 275 yards and a touchdown through three games this season.
Late last week, Jaire Alexander popped up on the Packers’ injury report with a back injury. The problem kept him out of the Packers’ victory over the Saints and he may not be ready to go against Detroit due to the short week.
If Alexander is unable to go, it will be a big blow to the defense as he would be tasked with shadowing St. Brown all game.