Multi-Tool Montgomery Relishes Opportunity

After playing just 17 offensive snaps in the first four games, Ty Montgomery was nothing more than a special teams’ contributor for the Packers. His 2015 rookie season ended prematurely after a high ankle sprain suffered in a win against the Chargers, and he was a forgotten man on the offense.

Fast forward to week 7 of the 2016 Packers season, and Montgomery could be the key to offensive success moving forward after injuries decimated the running back depth chart.

With Eddie Lacy sidelined long-term with an ankle injury and backup James Starks out multiple weeks after knee surgery, Montgomery quickly propelled up the depth chart in emergency fashion.

He’s relished the new opportunity working primarily in the backfield, snagging 20 passes over the past two games for 164 yards. Montgomery has also rushed 12 times for 66 yards in his new role as offensive swiss army knife.

The lack of available running backs on Thursday night forced the Packers to change their offensive philosophy, and they went back to their west coast roots with quick-hit passes used as a running game. The focal point of this attack was the consistent utilization of Montgomery both as a runner, and a receiver out of the backfield.

This is a natural role for Montgomery, a “gadget” type of position that he played in his final two seasons at Stanford. He was successful both as a rusher and a receiver posting 16 touchdowns and 1,865 receiving yards in his final 25 games in college. He proved to be a big play rusher posting an 8.6 average yards per carry when called upon, and flashed some of those skills on Thursday night against Chicago.

Following a Bears defensive touchdown early into the second half, Montgomery jumpstarted the Packers offense by taking a shotgun handoff and accelerated quickly up the middle for 30 yards. The run displayed an element the Packers offense has lacked for years, speed. When Montgomery gets space in the open field, he can be a difference maker on offense.

While he should never be confused as an every down back, he can certainly be the third down pass-catching back that this team needs and a different element at times for opposing defenses to worry about. Even his modest 6.6 yards per reception proved beneficial against the Bears, achieving first downs on half of those receptions. The week before, Montgomery converted 6 of his 10 catches into first downs against the Dallas Cowboys; all in the second half of action.

It could never be considered a positive when a player of Lacy’s magnitude gets injured, but it forced the Packers to utilize Montgomery and alter their seemingly stale game plan. The Packers took what the defense gave them and attacked with high percentage throws and even mixed in some crossing routes, helping their offensive cause.

Playing the Bears with Matt Barkley at quarterback may be a cure for any type of football ailment, so it is safe to say the defense is not in dominating form and the offense is not out of its’ funk just yet. It will be interesting to see what Mike McCarthy has in store for the Atlanta Falcons, and how much he continues to feature Ty Montgomery and cater his offense to his current personnel.

 

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Comments (28)

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Lacy's picture

October 22, 2016 at 01:40 pm

T Montgomery has pro bowl talent and needs to become the focal point of the packers offense .. he is that good

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Gman1976's picture

October 22, 2016 at 02:39 pm

1 - It sure looks like he is our #1 RB for the next several games.
2 - It is amazing how things changed offensively when we were in desperation mode. I don't think the offense would have changed much if we weren't suffering so much stagnation and so many injuries.

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dobber's picture

October 22, 2016 at 08:49 pm

I think that's the issue: last fall the WR and OL were decimated by injuries as well. How much did the O change?

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MITM's picture

October 22, 2016 at 03:09 pm

I dont know what this team is destined for in 2016. What I do know is that there is alot of young talent thats been brought in the last 2 years that hopefully will be in Green Bay for a long time. Montgomery is at the top of the list. Ripkowski is the next Pro Bowl FB in GB. Randall and Rollins may have bought into their own hype after last season but both are too talented to remain disappointing. Jake Ryan is just a good football player who you would want on your team. Ladarius Gunter is that taller corner we have always admired from afar but now we have in Green Bay. Moving on to this past years draft, I was not a fan of Clark over some of the other Dtackles still on the board but im glad i seem to be wrong. I dont think Raji showed up this much on film in his rookie season. Kyler Fackrell (Ghostface Kyler, anybody get it?) is giving us more than we probably had planned on asking of him this season already and will only get better. Does anybody have more fun playing football than Blake Martinez? He brings an energy to the defense and should lead it for years to come. He reminds me of a young Keith Brooking. Kentrell Brice is a serial killer wherever he is on the field. You cant teach someone to hit like that, they have to WANT TO. No matter what happens this season I will be keeping my eyes on this list of names.

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Amanofthenorth's picture

October 22, 2016 at 04:47 pm

Kenny Clark may be the best of all of these impressive players.

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Charvid's picture

October 22, 2016 at 07:11 pm

How about Kenny Clark at RB in goal line situations? Dude moves for a big guy.

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Acme Shellacking Co.'s picture

October 22, 2016 at 03:28 pm

I hope McCarthy draws up some plays where Montgomery comes out of the backfield and runs actual routes, opposed to just catching dump-offs all the time. Shallow crossing patters or slants could really be effective. I can just picture how miserable opposing linebackers would be having to pick him up in coverage all game.

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stockholder's picture

October 22, 2016 at 08:46 pm

I'll take the dump-offs. That opens up the middle. The next game is going to be a shoot out. Look for a few deeper passes. Adams and davis down the sidelines. Nelson, cobb and janis down the middle.

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Bearmeat's picture

October 22, 2016 at 03:30 pm

"Losing a player of Lacy's magnitude."

.... I see what you did there... ;)

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Amanofthenorth's picture

October 22, 2016 at 06:04 pm

It still amazes me how the packers on a short week came up with and executed this different offensive scheme.

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Lphill's picture

October 22, 2016 at 04:52 pm

I think Jordy gets his rythem back which should help , let's get Abby and Janis and Davis involved too , keep the defense guessing , use Ripkowski for short yardage .

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DrealynWilliams's picture

October 22, 2016 at 06:59 pm

Expect more deep shots in the near future when Ty is in the backfield. After going over the game again, I don't remember seeing 2-deep Safeties and since our WRs are catching the ball much better than before -- it might be worth it to let it fly.

I can't wait 'til Cook gets back. 1st Quarter, 4th & 3, 10:08 remaining. Sub Rodgers for Cook and you have a deadly personnel group.

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Bearmeat's picture

October 22, 2016 at 07:15 pm

Let's make that 2nd and 3 and I'll agree wholeheartedly with you. I've had ENOUGH of the deep shots on 3/4th and short under MM to last me a lifetime. ;)

.... except for week 17 of 2013. That was awesome. :D

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DrealynWilliams's picture

October 22, 2016 at 10:37 pm

No. No. No.

I was just giving the Quarter + down & distance so people could go back and look at the lineup and how everything played out. I'm not advocating for Rodgers to do so on any particular down & distance.

Also, going for the big shot is situational. You win some you lose some. If I'm not mistaken, a big shot was successful in the Lions game to Nelson on a 3rd and short. Those two also failed on a 3rd & short in a series or two before.

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4thand1's picture

October 22, 2016 at 09:04 pm

I stated in the past that Monty would be a steal when the Pack drafted him. Not sure why he wasn't used more early, maybe his high ankle sprain wasn't 100%. 19 receptions in 2 games? This kid will only get better.

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Savage57's picture

October 24, 2016 at 07:43 am

All good points but I wonder how much Ty really likes being referred to as a 'multi-tool'?

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Point-Packer's picture

October 22, 2016 at 10:01 pm

Amazing it took till game five for Missionary Mike to insert him into the offense.

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Nick Perry's picture

October 23, 2016 at 06:48 am

To quote Dennis Green, "Ty Montgomery is who we thought he was". I'm not surprised by Montgomery's recent success, not even a little bit. He showed the first few weeks last season a small glimpse of what he might bring to the Packers Offense, and he wasn't even lined up in the backfield much then if at all. If you don't remember go back and watch the 2nd half of the week 2 match up against Seattle.

Good coaches find a way to get a player like Montgomery on the field...no matter what. Look what Bill B has done with Wes Welker, Dion Lewis, James White to name just a few. He finds what they do best and uses them in that capacity. Every week the Patriots have a different game plan, attacking the weakness of opposing defense each week. McCarthy has FINALLY changed a little of what the Packers traditionally do (11 Personal W/ Cobb, Adams, and Nelson) and used some of the other players on the roster. OMG...Think of what might happen if Cook is healthy soon.

Be great if McCarthy made a point to keep using Montgomery in creative ways and get Kniles Davis up to speed ASAP. Having a RB with the speed Davis has to go with Monty, Cobb, and Nelson will breathe life into this offense. Atlanta doesn't stop the run well at all. This short passing game with a running game will be the best defense against Atlanta. Do like Bill B does Mike, one week at a time.

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Bearmeat's picture

October 23, 2016 at 07:47 am

Good stuff NP.

Imagine this:

Nelson and Adams outside. Cobb and Abby in the slot. Cook at TE. And Monty out of the backfield. Now THAT is a NIGHTMARE to defend on 3rd and mid-distance! This team's talent (and 2015's too - it just went unrecognized by MM), is at slot WR. As you said above - look at what the Pats have done without even a good outside WR threat since 2007. TEs and slot WRs all the way. WE can do that!

But I'll add in: They had better be sold on Rip as the pounder. They need that kind of brute strength to offset the 4-5 WR sets with Cook running the seam. Rip as the halfback with Cook or Spriggs in the FB role and Rodgers as the other in the wishbone. That isn't as good as Lacy in that role, but it could be effective.

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Nick Perry's picture

October 23, 2016 at 10:02 am

Rip and/or Davis both have power, Davis is just fast a hell but I love your idea. Getting all those players on the field at once has been a line-up several of us have wanted to see. Abby has the talent to be successful, if McCarthy would actually use him. Bill B would make him a 100 catch guy in no time. Like you said, the talent on this team seems "Unrecognized" by McCarthy, that and he's possibly THAT stubborn.

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Bearmeat's picture

October 23, 2016 at 11:46 am

Well, if you think back to 2006, 4-5 WRs with a menu of options is what MM did to get BF back in line. 2009 with ARod too.

I hope what we saw in the 2nd half last Thursday was the beginning of a complete offensive shift by MM/AR. With Lacy out, it's the only chance the 2016 Packers offense has to be good.

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Nick Perry's picture

October 23, 2016 at 01:15 pm

Good point, I hope so too.

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packfan44's picture

October 23, 2016 at 08:25 am

All you guys talk about is Abby, well I'm convinenced he can't stay on the field. Hurt all the time, an injury waiting to happen. Will be waived before season ends. We need Cook to come in and play like the TE he is. Open up the middle so we creat more options for AR. Sorry Abby not destined for greatness.

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NMPF's picture

October 23, 2016 at 09:37 am

Agree 44, Between china doll Abby and Forest Gump Janis, 7 Wr is a waste.

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Hematite's picture

October 23, 2016 at 02:56 pm

Abby may not be destined for greatness, but I think he could help this team in the short term.

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Since'61's picture

October 23, 2016 at 10:59 am

I don't know why MM hasn't used Monty regularly since week 1 unless his ankle was not yet fully healed. Regardless, it is now time for MM to build their offense around Monty. Get the ball into the hands of your best players and Monty is obviously one of them even when Lacy is healthy. Monty, Cobb and Cook when he gets back are the best weapons this offense has. I would like to see Trevor Davis more involved with offense as well. Send Trevor Davis on the long routes instead of Jordy and let's see what happens. Begin to use Jordy as more of a possession receiver. Adams can also be a possession type receiver. Get Rip more involved as well. This offense needs the speed now that Monty, Davis, and Cook when healthy, can provide. Maybe Knives Davis and Jackson can provide speed at RB as well. We're always waiting for the young players to develop when they could be playing now and making a difference like Monty has done for the offense and Martinez and Clark are doing for the defense. We can add some wrinkles to the offense to keep the Falcon defense off balance and stay on the field and keep Julio Jones off the field. Go Pack Go ! Thanks, Since '61

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Handsback's picture

October 23, 2016 at 12:01 pm

No real RB and Rodgers throwing ....lots of opportunity for Monty.
I bet MM will have a new plan going forward. I hope to see more of Janis and Davis opening routes for Nelson, Cobb, and Adams.

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GVPacker's picture

October 23, 2016 at 02:47 pm

Looks like the Vikes are going to loose today! Thank Goodness, their O line is horrible. Thanks Philly!!!

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