The Green Bay Packers are one of the NFL’s youngest teams. That showed itself in an awful way in their most recent game, a 34-20 loss to the Detroit Lions at home in Lambeau Field. However, in addition to being young, Green Bay has also suffered more than their fair share of serious injuries to key players.
Christian Watson injured his hamstring prior to the Packers’ Week One win over the Chicago Bears, a game in which starting running back Aaron Jones tweaked his own hamstring and missed two games. David Bakhtiari’s surgically repaired knee required another surgery and he will need another one in a few weeks.
And all of these injuries do not even cover Rashan Gary, who has been on a pitch count as he works his way back from a torn ACL that he suffered last year. Another player who was injured midseason last year, but has yet to come back in any fashion, is 2021 first round pick Eric Stokes.
Green Bay Packers Cornerback Eric Stokes Returned to Practice for the First Time Since Injury
Like Gary, Stokes was lost for the season in the Packers’ 15-9 loss to the Lions in Week Nine last season. Unlike Gary, who had a torn ACL, Stokes suffered a Lisfranc fracture, an incredibly painful foot injury. Earlier this offseason, Stokes revealed he was not able to put any weight on his foot until January.
It has been a long road back for Stokes, who was finally able to step onto the practice field to participate in some individual drills on Tuesday, according to Ryan Wood of USA Today:
Eric Stokes and Jaire Alexander participating in individual drills. Stokes’ first practice of the season after missing second half of 2022 with Lisfranc injury. pic.twitter.com/kYZapML8wA
— Ryan Wood (@ByRyanWood) October 3, 2023
This does not mean that Stokes will be ready to go when the Packers take on the Las Vegas Raiders on Monday Night Football. He still has to work his way back into game shape and get back into the speed of the defense.
That being said, it is a huge boost for the team to have Stokes back at practice, and it is promising that a return to the field may not be far off.
The Packers’ defense needs all the help it can get.
Where Will Eric Stokes Fit In on the Green Bay Packers Defense?
The Packers already have Jaire Alexander and Rasul Douglas starting on the outside, and neither of them is losing a starting spot any time soon. It is possible, though, that Stokes could eventually take Keisean Nixon’s spot at the slot corner position, or at the very least split snaps with him there.
On paper, the Packers’ cornerback room should be one of the best in the NFL with Stokes returning. In addition to Nixon, Alexander, and Douglas, the Packers also have 2023 seventh round pick Carrington Valentine, who made the 53-man roster,