The Green Bay Packers have an exciting young group of running backs, but that group will be shorthanded for a few games early in the 2018 regular season.
On Tuesday afternoon, the NFL announced that Aaron Jones has been suspended for two games as a result of a violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. The punishment handed down by the league is the result of a traffic stop last October, when Jones was pulled over for speeding and admitted to smoking marijuana.
Jones was expected to compete with Jamaal Williams and Ty Montgomery for the starting running back job in training camp. He should still be a large part of the team’s plans throughout 2018 and beyond, but he will miss the team’s opening games against the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings, both at Lambeau Field.
Last season, Jones started four games and played in 12, and he led the Packers in yards per carry at 5.5. He accrued 448 yards and four touchdowns on 81 carries, adding nine receptions for 22 yards. Jones will start the season on the reserve/suspended list, meaning that he will not count against the 53-man active roster limit while he is on suspension.
For now it appears that Williams will be the likely starter in week one against Chicago on Sunday Night Football. He had 20 carries for 67 yards plus one reception for seven yards in the Packers’ 23-16 win over the Bears in week nine last season.