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Packers' Jones returns to practice, fought off 'tightness' in hamstring

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Packers' Jones returns to practice, fought off 'tightness' in hamstring

-- The Green Bay Packers' got a lift to their backfield on Saturday when Aaron Jones returned to practice.

For as good as their rushing attack looked in Thursday night's preseason-opening win over the Houston Texans, inserting Jones back into the lineup -- and presumably getting him some live reps in the coming weeks -- should offer a beneficial boost for head coach Matt LaFleur and his run-oriented philosophy.

A philosophy that will require Jones to be 100 percent healthy before he can truly offer his talents. A philosophy that will see Jones do much more than simply taking repetitive hand-offs or pitches out of the backfield -- he's going to function as a receiver as well. 

But for now, despite missing the last six practices of training camp with what Jones would downplay as just "tightness" in his hamstring, he's being gradually worked back into the team's plans.

"It felt good to have a helmet and shoulder pads on and to be running around with the guys," Jones said, via Packers.com. "I wanted to be out there every day, but it's a long season so I appreciate the rest. As a running back, you take a lot of pounding so I'm not against [rest days]."

Jones isn't against getting work in the preseason. The Packers travel to Baltimore to meet with the Ravens this coming week, then to Winnipeg for a date with the Oakland Raiders. They'll be back home hosting the Kansas City Chiefs in the preseason finale on Aug. 29.

There's a good chance that sixth-round pick Dexter Williams is still going to receive a healthy dosage of the Packers' reps at running back between now and the end of exhibition play.

Williams, who had 15 touches for 80 yards against the Texans last week, showed off his one-cut expertise and savvy in locating running lanes. Tra Carson and Darrin Hall also saw the field with Jones and Jamaal Williams sidelined, but combined for 33 yards on 11 touches. The Packers released Corey Grant just hours before kickoff.

"We got it going late in the second half," Jones said of the Packers' ground game against the Texans. "Dexter did some good things in the running game, making one cut and getting vertical downhill. I thought it looked really good. We're just going to continue to work at it each day so we're ready week one."

It's no secret that Jones is in line for an exponential amount of snaps when compared to what he's seen in his first two years in the league under LaFleur's predecessor, Mike McCarthy, but he'll still be part of a rotation. Especially with Williams upping the ante as a serious competitor for the backup job. 

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Zachary Jacobson is a staff writer/reporter for Cheesehead TV. He's the voice of The Leap on iTunes and can be heard on The Scoop KLGR 1490 AM every Saturday morning. He's also a contributor on the Pack-A-Day Podcast. He can be found on Twitter via @ZachAJacobson or contacted through email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (10) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Lare's picture

I think they released Corey Grant just hours before kickoff.

Zachary Jacobson's picture

starting to lose track of all these running backs

mamasboy's picture

Where did you that from??

Coldworld's picture

Yes. They did.

Zachary Jacobson's picture

Lare was making a joke. I wrote Corey Hall instead of Corey Grant. I had him confused with Darrin Hall, the other RB.

Coldworld's picture

Not the erstwhile FB and Super Bowl winner?

Spock's picture

While I was watching the Texans/Packers game (delayed) a blurb at the bottom said the Texans had picked up Duke Johnson at RB. Anyone else see that?

PatrickGB's picture

I just read somewhere that both our FBs are ailing. So, reps are going to be needed.

TheVOR's picture

Jones is already confirming what I've been saying in national forums all offseason. He won't stay available, and he'll never be a Bell Cow. Still think GB needs to continue drafting and pursuing a true banger Bell Cow Back. I really like Aaron Jones, but I think we've seen enough already to know he's never going to be anything close to a 15-20 touch a game back. It's unfortunate too, because the dude is really a decent football player. Does you no good if he can't stay on the field.. Wish him well, heres to hope, but I somewhat doubt it at this juncture..

flackcatcher's picture

I think your being a bit harsh on Jones. He was never going to be a 20+ tote the rock guy. The NFL is not that league any more. (I want that League back too. But for now, it's dead and gone.) Keeping both Jones and Williams on the 53 and healthy is more important than burning both of the up by excesses carries. Jones, I hope will see throws out of the backfield, which will show case his skill set, and keep him healthy thru out this season.

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