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Packers LB Rob Francois Tears Achilles, Expected to Be Lost for the Season

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Packers LB Rob Francois Tears Achilles, Expected to Be Lost for the Season

The Packers linebackers had a rough day on Sunday with Clay Matthews breaking his thumb and Brad Jones pulling a hamstring.

But the worst injury was to Rob Francois who tore his Achilles tendon and is expected to miss the remainder of the season.

Even placing Francois on the short-term injured reserve doesn't look like a realistic possibility at this point.

The good news is that the Packers have good depth at inside linebacker, relying on Jamari Lattimore to pair with A.J. Hawk for the time being and also having Sam Barrington in reserve.

It remains to be seen whether the Packers will be looking to add a linebacker to take Francois' roster spot.

After releasing Jeremy Ross during the bye, the Packers are thin on wide receivers, currently only carrying four on their roster.

There's a decent chance the Packers use Francois' roster berth to add one of their practice squad receivers, possibly seventh round draft choice Charles Johnson, rookie Myles White or recently signed return specialist Reggie Dunn.


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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (18) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

RC Packer Fan's picture

The loss of Francois will be felt on special teams. He was a really good special teams player. And as a backup ILB.

My guess is if they like what they saw from Dunn this week in practice they promote him. Other wise I think they promote Charles Johnson. The WR's are thin so I think they will promote one of those 2 players.

hayward4president's picture

To be safe we better grab a LB from FA. No idea who is available...

Brian Carriveau's picture

You have to consider that Jones will likely be back at some point. The Packers can always play more dime defense if God forbid they suffer two more injuries in the same game. It's more likely they address WR before they address LB.

PackerPete's picture

yes but I think the "when" is crucial for the "at some point". if it is as bad as hayward's then Jones will be back beginning of December. That's a lot of games for having Lattimore in there with Barrington as backup.

Stroh's picture

I think they almost have to find another LB and most likely an ILB. Manning is on SD practice squad that would seem to make the most sense to me. He knows the D, the calls, he can step right into Francois role on ST and there won't be any down time learning. They want LB for ST so getting one of someones PS is the best alternative. And it so happens that Manning fits the best. Either he or DJ Smith, but I would make a play for Manning before looking at Smith.

RC Packer Fan's picture

I do agree with you, and Manning would be a perfect fit. That is if he would be willing to come back. He might not want to come back beings he was cut.
I don't think they look at Smith at all.

I just think what they will do is bring up a WR. If they really like Dunn, I can see them elevating him and making him their return specialist. 'IF' they like him. If they are still unsure of him I can see them elevating Johnson.

I'm not overly concerned about the LB position but 1 more injury I will be. They can use other packages and personnel to substitute for the LB's if they have to.

Derek in CO's picture

I disagree that we have good depth at ILB. I'd bring in another guy.

RC Packer Fan's picture

we did have good depth. Francois out though changes that. Lattimore and Barrington are ok, and will be able to fill the void, but not the same caliber as what Francois was.

PackerPete's picture

I think the move will be a move for ST. Yes, in the game they can play more dime if someone goes down. but the key thing is that a LB most likely gives you more on ST than a WR at this point, unless the WR is the returner. But I don't think one WR can replace Francois on ST. So now if you lose another ILB, and Barrington would've to play D, then they'd have to turn to a WR or CB to fill the ST spot? Don't think so. It'd make sense if Bostick could play ST. and what WR from PS would add anything at this point? Boykin doesn't even play O unless the game is already decided.

Brian Carriveau's picture

They have more than enough to cover special teams. Nate Palmer wasn't even active yesterday. He'll fill some of that void.

PackerPete's picture

don't disagree with you at the moment, but I think it will also depend on how long Jones and Matthews will be out. If both will miss significant time then signing a LB is much more likely than signing a WR. What exactly would a WR from PS add at this point? Boykin hardly plays, and none of the PS WRs is better than Boykin. And with the newly found run game, it's not a dire situation where one has to line up 4 WRs and a TE or even 5 WRs. So I doubt a WR makes sense, unless Dunn could provide a spark in the return game and Cobb wouldn't have to play on ST anymore.

RC Packer Fan's picture

If Mathews is going to miss significant time, I think they will put him on the IR designated to return. Which then they will for sure sign a LB.

I agree that the 5th WR might not play, but how much would the 5th ILB play?
If they are there for special teams that's what Nate Palmer would be for, who wasn't activated last week.

To me I still think it will be a WR. I could see them bringing up Johnson so they wouldn't lose him to another team wanting to sign him. I don't know if another team would but I could see that happening. I see them bringing Dunn up if he can be the return specialist.

Another option would be to not sign anyone this week and wait till the PUP list guys come back. I believe they could be signed next week right?

PackerPete's picture

I see your points, except for Johnson. I don't think anybody is looking to sign him. He hasn't shown anything in the preseason (maybe because of the injury), and I just don't see anybody signing him since there is no tape. There are some veteran WRs out there who could help a team on short notice, and signing Johnson seems a long shot to me.

Evan's picture

How long would he need to be out if they short-term IRd him?

RC Packer Fan's picture

We didn't see anything in preseason because he was hurt. But none of us see practices now. So mostly I'm going by thinking that he has showed more in practices.

I could be completely wrong about Johnson. I just think there is a lot of intrigue with him.
As much as the Packers like to throw the ball I think they would like to have a 5th WR on the roster. So that would leave Johnson, White or Dunn.

The guy I think they would bring up first would be Dunn, if he showed enough in practice this last week.
They could really use a return specialist, and if he could provide that, it would really help the team.

RC Packer Fan's picture

Short term IR is 6 weeks I believe.

RC Packer Fan's picture

Option #4... Sign Matt Flynn.. He was just cut by the Raiders.

Evan's picture


Bring Matty home...but cut Wallace. No need for 3 QBs.

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