The Green Bay Packers have made some great additions to the roster this offseason, and the development of several young players is cause for optimism and excitement in 2017. There are also plenty of talented veterans who make for must-watch television. However, when thinking about which player we at Acme Packing Company are most excited to see in the upcoming season, one name kept coming up over and over again:
Sure, Aaron Rodgers makes you stop and wonder “how did he do that” almost every week. Martellus Bennett’s addition should give the offense a completely new dimension from the tight end position. Kenny Clark’s development on the defensive line entering year two should be a fun sight to behold.
But the player with the most questions still to answer is still Montgomery.
Last year, after making the mid-season switch from wide receiver to running back, #88 was thrust into the starting lineup by default. All he did was display his excellent athleticism, signs of good ball-carrier vision, and a willingness to run through contact. In short, he showed glimpses of everything you want to see out of a running back (except, perhaps, for pass-blocking).
Furthermore, Montgomery was tabbed as Pro Football Focus’ “secret superstar” for the Packers in 2017. They cited his 5.1 yards after contact average as one of the reasons for that designation,
Consistency was a bit of a challenge, of course, as he was still getting fully acclimated to the position. In 2017, however, Montgomery will have the benefit of a full offseason of preparation as a tailback, and those opportunities to refine his technique and running abilities has Packers fans — us at APC especially — abuzz with excitement about what he can bring to the offense.
After all, if he can prove to be at least an adequate pass-blocker, Montgomery will be the absolutely ideal back for a Mike McCarthy-designed and Aaron Rodgers-led offense. His receiving chops make him a great option on screens and passes out of the backfield, and his route-running abilities allow him to line up as a receiver on third down without the team having to change personnel. His running ability is of course critical, and we already touched on his raw tools; he should be better able to harness them effectively this season.
And don’t forget that Montgomery is built like a brick house, and has every bit the build of a runner at 6 feet and 220 pounds.
All told, Montgomery should be a ton of fun to watch this season (especially while wearing number 88 in the backfield), and we can’t wait to see how he performs behind Aaron Rodgers.