The Packers announced today that they have elevated running back Patrick Taylor Jr. from the practice squad following the team’s placement of Kylin Hill on the injured reserve list on Monday. This was an expected move following Tuesday’s practice squad movement on the day of the NFL’s trade deadline.
The move gives the team their third running back on the 53-man roster, a virtual requirement in today’s NFL. Hill only managed to play 26 snaps over eight games with the offense, so don’t expect much of Taylor early on, barring injury, behind Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon. Where Hill did contribute, though, was on special teams where he notched 76 total snaps and was the starting kick returner.
Head coach Matt LaFleur has indicated that receiver Malik Taylor, who did not return kicks for the team in the preseason, would get looks as a kick returner this week. Malik Taylor was Hill’s substitute when Hill injured his knee returning a kick against the Arizona Cardinals. Patrick Taylor only returned one kick in his college football career but flashed quality hands by bringing in 55 balls for Memphis before a foot injury ended his college career short. There is potential for him to get involved in the kicking game, beyond assisting in punt protection.
This will be the first time that Taylor has made the Packers’ 53-man roster after he spent his 2020 rookie season on the non-football injury list. He did not practice with the team until December 17th and was never activated from the injury list. Taylor has spent the entire 2021 season on the Packers’ practice squad up to this point after showing quality flashes in the preseason.
The team also signed running back Ryquell Armstead to the practice squad yesterday, providing the team with depth and competition behind Taylor. Armstead, a former fifth-round pick, is on his fourth team and has produced 252 total offensive yards in his NFL career, all coming in his rookie season of 2019. He missed 2020 due to COVID issues, as he was hospitalized twice for the virus that season.