Packers Need a Running Back like Theo Riddick

The Packers released Mike Daniels and signed rookie running back Darrin Hall. Here's why getting Theo Riddick makes much more sense.  

The Green Bay Packers made a surprise move this week by cutting ties with long-time defensive tackle Mike Daniels.

It was shocking to see Daniels name on the waiver wire. But one day after Dean Lowry got a new deal, essentially paying him starting money at the five technique, something had to give.

That something was Daniels, who was cut, then promptly turned around and signed a nine-million dollar deal with the Detroit Lions. It's a good move for Detroit. If healthy, Daniels will be a solid interior pass rusher. He's tough and he's a great leader.

But his addition also forced the Lions to make a move of their own, cutting long-time running back Theo Riddick to make room for their new addition. 

And while the Packers did act to sign rookie running back Darrin Hall, they should hand him a pink slip and get Riddick on speed dial.

Over the past five seasons, Riddick has been a terror out of the backfield. He has hauled in 281 receptions for over 2,230 yards. He is the only running back to go over 300 yards receiving in each of the past five seasons and more impressively, he has caught at least 53 passes four years in a row to go along with 14 touchdown receptions and five more on the ground.

Now think to yourself, when is the last time Green Bay had a receiving threat out of the backfield like that? Maybe Dorsey Levens? And even Dorsey can't do what Theo Riddick can.

He's a matchup nightmare. With his quickness, great hands and elusiveness, he's a nightmare to cover one-on-one. And what are defenses going to do, allocate a corner or safety to cover him one-on-one all day? 

If so Aaron Rodgers would love that. Drew Brees would too and that is where Riddick is headed for his first visit, New Orleans, a place where they will get the most out of him.

For years, the Packers have been lacking a mismatch out of the backfield and following the release of Daniels, there is Riddick, available on the market, just begging for a phone call. He's the receiving back Green Bay has desperately been missing and it will cost next to nothing to acquire him.

Yes, the Packers have three guys they probably want to keep at running back in Aaron Jones, Jamaal Williams and Dexter Williams, the rookie out of Notre Dame.

But none of them bring a dynamic ability to the passing game that Riddick does and if the Packers allow him to sign with New Orleans, they will have missed a golden opportunity to add a true X-factor to the offense for 2019. 

 

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Chris is a sports journalist from Montana and has been blogging about the Packers since 2011. Chris has been a staff writer for CheeseheadTV since 2017 and looks forward to the day when Aaron Rodgers wins his second Super Bowl. Follow him @thepackersguru

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Comments (22)

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Coach JV's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:19 am

Oh Ye of little faith...

I can't wait till Aaron Jones shuts the mouth of every doubter like this writer... in the run and pass game alike. I can't wait till you all see what this young man will be when he breaks out this year.

We don't need Theo Riddick.

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Coldworld's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:35 am

Depends on cost. Is he an upgrade on the others and how bad is Williams’ hammy? I have to think he would be a viable option to share duties with Jones from the get go.

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IceBowl's picture

July 28, 2019 at 02:20 pm

Coach JV,

I agree. We have A Jones. Not the history of Riddick, but more talent.

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Lare's picture

July 28, 2019 at 03:14 pm

I don't think anybody questions Jones' ability, I think many question his availability.

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MWendlandt's picture

July 29, 2019 at 03:11 pm

Agreed. And if they wanted a receiving back, Jones, J. Williams, and Grant have all shown that they can handle the role.

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Spookyfox's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:25 am

I can't get down with this.

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Since '61's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:48 am

I would like to see Gute make a move to get Riddick. He is a much better player than the camp fodder RBs they signed earlier this week. Thanks, Since ‘61

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Lare's picture

July 28, 2019 at 01:02 pm

I agree if they can get him for a reasonable price. Williams is already injured and I'm not super confident that Aaron Jones can make it through a whole season.

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Since '61's picture

July 28, 2019 at 03:05 pm

Definitely agree that the price must be right. Thanks, Since ‘61

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blondy45's picture

July 28, 2019 at 07:07 pm

Riddick may be better than the latest 2 signed RB's...but the Pack needs to spend money wisely. We have our LB Martinez & our Dl Clark who both need new contracts. We have not even had a live tackle preseason game yet. We have not had any season ending injuries where we need to restock that position's depth yet. We can not sign every name recognizable guy that becomes available. Riddick is not worth our time or especially our money to sign him. Youth is key at the RB position. I believe the Pack has many players to choose from. May the best man win from within.

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Branden Burke's picture

July 28, 2019 at 12:40 pm

Well, I have a few thoughts here:

Theo isn't very good. He has been in the league since 2013 and just barely had 1000 yards rushing.

Jamaal Williams isn't very good, but he has that same rushing total in a limited number of games in 2 years.

Aaron Jones will be a much better receiver than people must give him credit for.

Ahman green was better out of the backfield than Dorsey.

I think hall has potential. Much like Christian Michael's, he looks like he is shot out of a cannon. We will see if he has anything between his ears and some patience while running, but he has all of the physical tools. And if any position has shown to have undrafted stars, it's RB

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Jonathan Spader's picture

July 28, 2019 at 04:57 pm

The NFL is a passing league....
The NFL is a passing league....
The NFL is a passing league....

Who cares of Riddick doesn't have 1000 yards rushing. Look at his production out of the backfield. He's an explosive pass catching back and a great sign for the right price.

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Coldworld's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:07 pm

You also have to look hat how he was used and who he was running behind. There are reasons and yards are yards.

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Branden Burke's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:31 pm

Who was he running behind? It's the Lions.

It isn't like Riddick was doing anything particularly good. Look up his stats. His career average rushing is 3.6 ypc, and he averaged 6.3 yards per catch last year. He really only had one pretty good year as a receiver out of the backfield, and that was 4 years ago. Otherwise it's a bunch of 300 yard up to low 400 yard seasons on a lot of targets. The one thing he does well is he has a pretty high catch rate. He just isn't getting a lot of production with those catches.

Might as well use Trevor Davis back there. He can't be worse as a runner and will probably be better as a receiver. Or how about not becoming one dimensional and keep the all purpose backs in there. Aaron Jones should be really good out of the backfield.

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OldPacker's picture

July 28, 2019 at 04:00 pm

Does anyone know if Riddick return Punts ??

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AgrippaLII's picture

July 28, 2019 at 04:08 pm

Williams hamstring will become a season long issue...it seems like players never really get over them. I think Lafleur and Gutekunst realize this which is why they are targeting RB's so heavy right now. I like the two backs they've signed...but at the right price Riddick would be a nice pick up.

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splitpea1's picture

July 28, 2019 at 08:13 pm

Sign him (as long as the price isn't extravagant)!! What if Jones misses some time? Wouldn't it be nice to have an option like this? Don't let the competition beat us to the punch!

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

July 28, 2019 at 08:21 pm

I feel good right where the Pack are right now with RB's. Jones and the 2 William's. These 3 back's look good and will surprise this year on receptions out of backfield. Plus, I think Corey Grant is intriguing!

Save cap dollars for resigning our core players.

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Coldworld's picture

July 28, 2019 at 11:08 pm

I think that is reasonable if Williams’ hamstring is minor.

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marpag1's picture

July 29, 2019 at 09:17 am

I know it wasn't the point of the article, but it always makes me cringe a bit when people refer to Mike Daniels as "a great leader." I'm not saying he's a problem, but I don't see him as a notably good leader and I never really did. Especially in the more recent years, his 'leadership' seemed pretty questionable.

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IceBowl's picture

July 29, 2019 at 03:33 pm

marpag1,

Daniels was THE leader 2-3 maybe 4 years ago when the D had no other leaders. He spoke up and challenged the D in the media (and face to face I would imagine). He said they had to play better.

The only waves I saw him make was challenging his D teammates. They didn't complain either.

I would call that a leader.

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Leo Van Groll's picture

July 29, 2019 at 09:37 am

The writer obviously hasn't been paying attention. Le Fleur has said repeatedly that he want's guys that can do more than 1 thing so as to confuse the defenses. Riddick is 1 dimensional. Signing Corey Grant is a good example of the type of back they covet.

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