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Offline Zero2Cool  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:32:50 PM(UTC)
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[img_r]http://graphics.jsonline.com/graphics/packer/img/news/aug08/tryan826.jpg[/img_r]Green Bay - If he had his druthers, Ryan Grant would run the ball at will in the Green Bay Packers' exhibition finale Thursday night against the Tennessee Titans.

But Packers coach Mike McCarthy wont allow it, not in a meaningless game like this and especially not in Grants first live action since running into the unyielding arms of the New York Giants defense seven months ago. He, like the rest of the Packers starters, will be in the game for about 10 snaps.

As eager as Grant is to prove hes not a one-year wonder, he might have to get used to the concept of moderation because if McCarthy has his way, there wont be many 30-carry nights for his starting halfback. As good as Grant was in his first season as a starter, McCarthy doesnt want to see a premature end to his career.

I dont think he needs to carry it 30 times for us, McCarthy said. I dont think he needs to carry it 25. I think 20 would be great. You have to be smart with a guy. You get him 20 carries a game, thats being smart and productive. You can get him the ball some other ways through the passing game.

I dont want the guy to be a one- or two-year flash and be done with him. History supports that.

At least the overall numbers do. A National Football League Players Association study released several years ago reported that the average career of an NFL player was 3.5 years in length. For a running back, it was only 2.6 years.

For every vintage running machine like Eric Dickerson, Barry Sanders, Tiki Barber and Emmitt Smith, there are multiple side-of-the-road wrecks like Jamal Anderson, Domanick Davis, Carnell Cadillac Williams and Rudi Johnson, all of whom broke down under the strain of overuse.

It might not be music to Grants ears that hell be limited to around 300 carries this year, but the fact is last season he gained 1,159 yards in roughly 19 carries a game starting with the Denver Broncos game Oct. 29. Toward the end of the year, McCarthy started to incorporate backup Brandon Jackson into the lineup, which is something he plans on doing even more this year.

Grant, who missed all but six practices this summer because of a contract dispute and a hamstring strain, will make his exhibition debut against the Titans and then prepare to be the Packers main running threat for the season opener Sept. 8 against Minnesota. Although his carries will be limited, his overall number of touches might not be.

One of the ways McCarthy plans to increase Grants role without subjecting him to the pounding he takes running into 300-pound defensive linemen is to incorporate him more into the passing game. Last year, Grant caught 30 passes but had more than two catches in only four of the 18 games in which he appeared.

Playing with Aaron Rodgers, who is more likely to dump the ball off than Brett Favre, Grant could wind up being among the team leaders in receptions this year. Such a thing happened during the 2003 season, when Ahman Green rushed for a franchise-high 1,883 yards and also finished second behind Donald Driver in receptions with 50.

The problem is that Grant has basically missed two training camps with the Packers, last year because he was acquired in a trade a week before the opener and this year because of the contract and injury. Even his off-season program was affected this year because he was unable to practice without a contract.

Even though Grant has been in meetings and watching every snap at practice, he hasnt been working on his timing in the screen game or taking on blitzing linebackers when he stays in the backfield.

I would have liked to get him more experience in the passing game, McCarthy said. I dont care what system youre in, its the nuances of check-downs and timing and all that. Youd just really like to go through it with him.

Grant said after evaluating his 2007 season he rushed for 956 yards (5.1 average) and eight touchdowns in the regular-season he thought there were things he could do a lot better. He proved to be a good fit for the one-cut, zone style of running game McCarthy favors, but there were times his balance wasnt good and his timing was off.

The Packers worked harder on their screen pass this summer, but Grant wasnt able to be a part of it, so hell be working from scratch when regular-season practice begins.

You can get better at everything, Grant said. You evaluate yourself, youre hard on yourself. There are a lot of things I did wrong and could get better on. Even plays that I did right I can get better on.

Im just trying to get more comfortable with certain plays. I wanted to feel comfortable with me doing everything. I want to be literally where I could be a quarterback on the field. I think the more you know, it slows the game down.

Grants road back starts against the Titans and reaches highway speed Sept. 8. How far he has fallen behind and how far McCarthy is willing to go with him will be answered at that time.
Offline bozz_2006  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:39:57 PM(UTC)
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Z, that big pic of Grant is covering up most of the text
Offline Zero2Cool  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:40:32 PM(UTC)
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" said: Go to Quoted Post
Z, that big pic of Grant is covering up most of the text


Nope, it is not. ;)
Offline bozz_2006  
#4 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:43:45 PM(UTC)
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it is on my browser, IE7
Offline Zero2Cool  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 12:48:10 PM(UTC)
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" said: Go to Quoted Post
it is on my browser, IE7


You sir are very correct. It also happens on IE6. I always forget some people still actually use IE at all. I rarely double check things on that lol...


It's fixed now.
Offline zombieslayer  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 1:26:21 PM(UTC)
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" said: Go to Quoted Post
it is on my browser, IE7


What the heck are you doing using IE7? Try Firefox. It works.
Offline zombieslayer  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 1:26:50 PM(UTC)
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" said: Go to Quoted Post
" said: Go to Quoted Post
it is on my browser, IE7


You sir are very correct. It also happens on IE6. I always forget some people still actually use IE at all. I rarely double check things on that lol...


It's fixed now.


Why fix it?
People who use IE are masochists and should be punished.
Offline zombieslayer  
#8 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 1:28:02 PM(UTC)
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OK, back on topic.

History shows that limiting carries to a RB is a GOOD thing. I'm glad Mike McCarthy is throwing Jackson in there more. I'd like to see Grant have a 6+ year career with us.
Offline walleye  
#9 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 1:56:01 PM(UTC)
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Joined: 8/7/2008(UTC)
" said: Go to Quoted Post
OK, back on topic.

History shows that limiting carries to a RB is a GOOD thing. I'm glad Mike McCarthy is throwing Jackson in there more. I'd like to see Grant have a 6+ year career with us.

That would be nice!
Offline Zero2Cool  
#10 Posted : Wednesday, August 27, 2008 2:11:56 PM(UTC)
Rank: Premier Member

Yahoo! NCAA March Madness - Gold: 2015Yahoo! Fantasy Football - Gold: 2009FleaFlicker Fantasy Football - Silver: 2010Yahoo! NCAA March Madness - Silver: 2011ESPN NCAA March Madness - Bronze: 2010Yahoo! NCAA March Madness - Bronze: 2013

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" said: Go to Quoted Post
" said: Go to Quoted Post
it is on my browser, IE7


What the heck are you doing using IE7? Try Firefox. It works.


IE6 doesn't even display the graphical PNG file extensions properly. Pathetic.



I think Grant needs more carries. He's inconsistent and you never know when he'll bust one. His stats are deceiving.
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