The Green Bay Packers and hamstring injuries have been an unfortunate duo so far early in the season. Heading into Week One against the Chicago Bears, wide receivers Romeo Doubs and Christian Watson were questionable with hamstring injuries. Doubs, of course, ended up being able to play while Watson could not go.
During that Week One contest, running back Aaron Jones tweaked his hamstring as well, an injury that knocked him out of the game. As everyone knows, Watson and Jones both missed the Packers’ 25-24 loss against the Atlanta Falcons due to their injuries.
While their status for Week Three, the Packers’ home opener against the New Orleans Saints, is still up in the air, so too is the status of former fan favorite Jamaal Williams, who now plays for the Saints. He suffered a hamstring injury of his own in New Orleans’ 20-17 win over the Carolina Panthers on Monday Night.
Former Green Bay Packers Running Back Jamaal Williams Hurt His Hamstring in New Orleans Saints Victory
Williams was limited to just nine carries for 29 yards before being forced to leave the game with a hamstring injury:
#Saints RB Jamaal Williams suffered a hamstring injury. He’s question to return tonight.
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) September 19, 2023
Williams did not return to the game, much like Jones did not return to the Packers’ game against Chicago. One medial expert has already estimated that he will not be able to play in Week Three when the Saints visit his old stomping grounds in Lambeau Field.
The New Orleans Saints Are Thin at Running Back
Alvin Kamara, the Saints’ star running back, will not play against the Packers as he sits out his third and final game as part of his three-game suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.
Kendre Miller, the backup running back with Kamara out, has yet to play this season due to his own hamstring injury.
If Williams and Miller are unable to play, the only active running back remaining on the New Orleans roster is Tony Jones Jr., who has 80 career carries for 218 yards (2.7 yards per carry) and two touchdowns in his five NFL seasons.
Former Packers training camp star Taysum Hill led the Saints with nine rushes for 75 yards against the Panthers.
The Green Bay Packers Run Defense Needs a “Get Right” Game
The Green Bay Packer run defense gave up 211 yards on the ground in their loss to the Falcons on Sunday. Rookie phenom averaged 6.5 yards per carry, rushing 19 times for 124 yards.
According to PFF, the Packers have the 23rd ranked run defense through the first two weeks of the season. As New Orleans will not have a credible rushing attack on Sunday, it is imperative that the Green Bay defense does not make whatever running back the Saints use look like prime Barry Sanders, as they are prone to doing.
This should be the perfect game for Joe Barry’s run defense to find the spark that it had in Week One when they dominated the Chicago Bears.
This is not to say beating New Orleans will be easy. Their defense has held opponents under 20 points for 10 games in a row dating back to last season. Indeed, it will be a real test of Jordan Love and the young offense. But the Packers defense needs to do its job, too, against an aging Derek Carr and a depleted Saints running back room.