Tag:Ryan Grant
Posted on: March 16, 2011 9:53 am
Edited on: March 16, 2011 9:53 am

Mendenhall has Peterson's back on slavery claim

R. Mendenhall agreed with some of A. Peterson's slavery comments (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

You might have seen Vikings RB Adrian Peterson’s comments from Tuesday when he referred to the NFL as “modern day slavery,” which then caused a big sigh from just about everybody else in the world when they heard it.

You might feel that a dude who’s scheduled to make about $10 million next season is overstating his opinion (just a bit, anyway) with a comment like that.

While some, like Packers RB Ryan Grant, have taken exception to Peterson’s statement – Grant makes the point that there is, you know, still ACTUAL slavery in the world – Steelers RB Rashard Mendenhall sees Peterson’s point.

Writes Mendenhall on his Twitter page (this transcript, by the way, is presented unedited and strung together over about 10 different updates): “@AdrianPeterson Anyone with knowledege of the slave trade and the NFL could say that these two parallel eachother. If you look back and disect what I said, I ddnt say that the NFL was slavery, I said that they parallel eachother. Look up the word parallel. This means that they're not the same thing, but they run the same course. These paths will never cross, but they mirror eachother. I could break down how, but that would take an amount of ideology and big words that a lot of you wouldn't understand.

“Learn to LISTEN before you pass judgement. Because speaking without knowledge of subject is truly ignorant. Outside of the dollar amounts you see on tv, you don't know what's going on with the innerworkings of this buisness. I don't know what goes on at your job. But how dumb would I sound if I read about it in the newspaper and tried to tell you what's going on? Its bigger than what you people on the outside see on sundays, see on ESPN, read about in the paper. Just like any job, any business anywhere. Really think about that.”

Since Peterson is traveling to Africa, his agent, Ben Dogra, was left cleaning up some of the mess.

"I think anybody that knows Adrian knows that Adrian is a very strong-willed and passionate individual," Dogra told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. "The game means an awful lot to him. People should not just take his statements per se word by word. It's a difficult time. He would love to play. I'm sure that everybody would love to see football continue in the NFL and I'm sure at some point it will get resolved. But Adrian, that's what makes him great. He's soft-spoken but if he has something on his mind he'll speak it. But I think nobody should really look at those words and take them out of context."

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Posted on: January 17, 2011 3:10 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2011 4:20 pm

Ryan Grant trash tweets the Bears

Posted by Andy BenoitR. Grant

Ryan Grant, who has not played since injuring his ankle in Week 1 (word is his recovery is going well, by the way) sent out this tweet Saturday night:

"1st n last tweet .Pack Fans might want 2 start booking flights 4 feb. Not looking ahead but u c we just have better players than other teams."

The only “other” team left would be the Chicago Bears – and they wouldn’t necessarily disagree with Grant. Devin Hester said before Week 17 that he didn’t want to face the Packers again in the postseason. Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa gave a cold water, level-headed response to Grant that was so truthful it took all the fun out of it.

"You don't [respond to that]," Tinoisamoa said on ESPN 1000 in Chicago "It's kind of tough, because Ryan hasn't played all year. So what are you going to say? It would be different if he was playing. You don't really respond to that kind of stuff.

"The game is played on Sunday. We're not going to buy into that hype. We know the importance of this game. We know how we feel about it."

At least Bears fans might have a thing or two to say about Grant’s trash talking. And perhaps so will Grant's teammates given that, you know, they'll actually be out there playing this Sunday.

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Posted on: January 9, 2011 8:45 pm
Edited on: January 9, 2011 9:35 pm

Packers have (gasp) a running game (VIDEO)

J. Starks had a breakout game vs. Philadelphia (Getty).

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

With their win vs. the Bears in Week 17, the Packers established themselves as the “non division winner nobody in the NFC wants to face in the playoffs.” Tonight, they showed you why.

Aaron Rodgers continued to establish himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the league – if you had to pick between Rodgers, Drew Brees and Peyton Manning to lead your offense, that would be a tough choice at this point – and the Packers are tough on defense (Clay Matthews, Tramon Williams, Charles Woodson, et al).

But here’s the scariest part about Green Bay. The Packers now apparently have a running game. And with a running game, they very well might be the best team in the NFC.

Funny, they haven’t had one of those for most of the year. After Ryan Grant was lost in the season-opener, Packers fans have been subject to watching Brandon Jackson be rather mediocre and John Kuhn try to convert himself from a fullback into more of a tailback (Kuhn has been pretty decent, actually).

But with the emergence of rookie RB James Starks, the Packers become that much more dangerous, because they take less pressure off Rodgers and because they make the play-action pass that much more effective.

Here's Rodgers talking about his running game:

Against the Eagles, Starks carried 23 times for 127 yards, including a key first down late in the fourth quarter that kept Green Bay’s last drive alive for another three plays, and behind that performance, Rodgers threw for three touchdowns. And think about this: Starks only played THREE games in the regular season (he was on the physically unable to perform list for much of the year). Most notably, he had 18 carries for 73 yards in Week 13 vs. the 49ers, but then he only played once in the next three games.

After tonight, I doubt he will be absent again.

So why hasn’t he been playing lately? Well, there have been whispers about his practice habits. Not necessarily his work ethic, but about what he actually accomplishes while at practice.

"Keep in mind this is a young kid who is still continuing to grow and continuing to develop," Packers running backs coach Edgar Bennett told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel this week. "Each and every one of our backs, they have a role and when their number is called they'll jump in and respond. He certainly has all the capabilities of being (an every-down back). He's talented."

Yes, we saw that tonight.

And now the Falcons have to figure out a way to stop him. The last time these two squads faced off – in Week 12 with Atlanta needing a last-second field goal to pull out the victory – Green Bay’s running game was obsolete. Jackson carried the ball 10 times for 26 yards (actually, Rodgers led all rushers with 51 yards), and the Packers passing game was what led them to their near win.

Now, Green Bay has Starks, and he might just be the difference.

That's what the Eagles will tell you, anyway.

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Posted on: October 7, 2010 11:38 am

The Packers missed out on Marshawn Lynch

Some have wondered why Green Bay didn't try harder to land M. Lynch in a trade. Posted by Josh Katzowitz

When the Bills traded RB Marshawn Lynch to a Seattle team which already had pretty good depth at the RB position, some observers wondered why Green Bay wouldn't have wanted to make that trade.

After all, the Packers lost Ryan Grant to a season-ending ankle injury, and with FB John Kuhn serving as one of the top running backs and with the relatively inexperienced Brandon Jackson also in the mix, the team ranks 22nd in the NFL in rushing yards per game with 94.5.

It seems likely that if Green Bay finds a postseason berth, the Packers would need a stronger running game in order to make a deep run. But they passed on Lynch. Why?

As the Green Bay Press Gazette’s Pete Dougherty writes, it wasn’t a great decision by GM Ted Thompson. Perhaps it makes sense in Thompson’s head – he doesn’t like to part with draft picks, and in order to pick up Lynch, the Seahawks had to send Buffalo a fourth-round pick in 2011 and a conditional pick for 2012 – but that doesn’t mean it was the right move.

Writes Dougherty:

An NFL source who knew of the trade talks said Thompson was in on the bidding for Lynch. The source didn’t know what Thompson offered, but it’s safe to say it wasn’t as much as Seattle, because there were no factors to think 0-4 Buffalo did anything but take the best offer.

That means Thompson didn’t offer a third-round pick. He should have.

But Thompson also has a team now that could win a title, and with the Packers’ run game in the tank since Ryan Grant’s season-ending injury, adding Lynch would have improved the Packers’ chances. … Why is Lynch worth it? Because he’s far better than anyone the Packers have, and probably is better than Grant.

Now, let’s take a look at Kuhn and Jackson. I’ve seen some of Kuhn, and he’s looked pretty good for a fullback filling in at RB. He’s had 121 yards on 26 carries, a 4.7 average. Meanwhile, Jackson has taken 45 handoffs and has gained only 16 more yards than Kuhn.

Obviously, that’s not very good.

QB Aaron Rodgers has looked good this season, but you have to wonder how much a player like Lynch could have helped open up the passing game. You have to wonder if the Packers really could challenge for a Super Bowl bid if they had taken Lynch.

Sure, it’s right to worry about Lynch’s character, but remember, he’s only 24 years old and had looked pretty decent so far this year on what is a bad Bills offense. He hasn’t been a distraction so far early this season. Would he have been worth the risk?

Dougherty thinks so. Thompson obviously didn’t. And the Packers aren’t any better for it.

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Posted on: September 21, 2010 10:04 am

Hot Routes 09.21.10: Don't touch me there

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

- You can’t like it when a dude grabs your junk in the middle of a football game. Yet, that's exactly what Cleveland C Alex Mack says his former teammate, Chiefs DL Shaun Smith, did during Sunday’s game. “Not cool,” says the all the world’s men. “Not cool at all.” Smith said he didn’t recall doing anything like that.

- Patriots coach Bill Belichick wasn’t a fan of the way Jets DB Eric Smith hit New England WR Wes Welker in the head during Sunday’s game. “I don’t think that’s really what the league is looking for with those kind of plays,” Belichick said. “I can’t imagine that they are. We’ll see what they want to do about it.”

- Titans coach Jeff Fisher expects Vince Young to respond to his benching last Sunday by returning next week and playing better. Fisher said Young doesn’t have to look over his shoulder at backup Kerry Collins, but then again, Fisher showed why Young should look over his shoulder if he plays poorly in a game.

- A little less high profile than Braylon Edwards’ DWI arrest this morning, but still important to know nonetheless. Ravens assistant offensive line coach Andy Moeller is facing drunken driving charges again. He was stopped just before 1 a.m. Saturday. He was charged with the same offense in May but ultimately was acquitted.

-`At this point, it doesn’t seem like Ken Whisenhunt knows too much about Arizona’s football team. Which is strange because … you know … he’s the coach.

- Raiders coach Tom Cable seems to know who will start at quarterback – either Jason Campbell or Bruce Gradkowski – for Oakland next Sunday. But he said he’s not going to inform the world until Wednesday.

- It’s shocking that a team that kept just two running backs on the initial 53-man roster – and three fullbacks! – is having problems running the ball. Yet, after Ryan Grant’s season-ending injury, that’s exactly where Green Bay finds itself.

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Posted on: September 16, 2010 12:58 pm
Edited on: September 16, 2010 1:17 pm

Bills say no change on stance of trading Marshawn

Posted by Will Brinson

Yesterday, Andy wrote an excellent post regarding the possibility of Marshawn Lynch getting traded to the Green Bay Packers. There wasn't any speculation that it was going to happen -- after all, no sources have indicated any sort of discussion between the Bills and Pack -- just that it makes a ton of sense for everyone involved.

And it does: with Ryan Grant now officially out for the season and with Green Bay only having one more running back (Brandon Jackson) on their roster and with Marshawn being the odd man out in a three-headed backfield monster in Buffalo, the logical move for the Bills here is to trade Lynch and recoup something that will help the franchise in the future.

But apparently, they don't feel the same way and have not, according to the Bills' official blog , changed the way they feel about dealing Beast Mode. (Random aside: I'm currently drinking out of a "Beast Mode" coffee cup; it's my favorite bizarre NFL swag item of all-time.)

Chris Brown points out Buddy Nix's comments at the draft ("our intention is for Marshawn Lynch to be [in Buffalo]") and then notes Chan Gailey's comments as well, before pointing out that in the first preseason game, the Bills lost both Lynch and Fred Jackson to injury, which "further strengthened" the team's belief that you can't have too many good backs.

That's an absolutely valid point -- if Jackson is reinjured, the Bills would need Lynch on the roster to help provide support for C.J. Spiller. But here's the problem: the Bills are not going to contend for the playoffs this year -- they just aren't.

And therefor the logical, forward-thinking move is to take Lynch, while his value is maximized, and get something that will help the franchise grow in the future. In fact, the single most problematic part with drafting Spiller in the past year's first round was (and still "is" by the way) is that having a bunch of good running backs is only nice if you have other parts on the team that can help them succeed.

The Bills don't have that right now, but by dealing Lynch to someone like the Packers for, hypothetically, a second-rounder or a third plus a player, they would immediately bolster the team's future. And that should matter more right now than stubbornly trying to hold onto a low-salary, high-talent player that the organization gave up on without actually admitting that they did.

Update: Marshawn himself talked about the possibility of being traded and whether it affects him.

“No, because if it’s going to happen then it’s going to happen,” Lynch said. ”What will I be able to do about it? If they say I’ve got to go then what am I going to do, tell them no? If they say I’m going to stay, I’m here, if they say I’m not going nowhere then let’s continue to build on this thing and get better.”

He also made a fairly provocative comment about the Bills' rushing attack against the Dolphins on Sunday. Or, at least a reasonable one for a team with the passing "weapons" that the Bills have.

“It wasn’t what us as a group wanted it to be,” said Lynch. ”The most carries by a back I believe was seven. That’s not good for any running back to get a feel for it. I’m not saying what should’ve been done or could’ve been done. All I know is we’ve just got to do something to get on track with it.”

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Posted on: September 14, 2010 1:48 pm
Edited on: September 14, 2010 2:07 pm

Report: Ryan Grant out for the year

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Grant According to Fox Sports' Jay Glazer , the Packers will place RB Ryan Grant on IR with severe ankle and leg injuries, ending his season.

There seems to be some debate, though, about what exactly is going on with Grant. Tweeted SI.com's Will Carroll, "Glazer's reports directly conflict with what I was told regarding Ryan Grant's ankle sprain. We'll have to see how this comes out."

Grant is coming off back-to-back 1,200-yard seasons, and he'll surely be missed if his season is over. Now, it appears Brandon Jackson (626 combined yards in the past three years) will take over the starting role.

This ordeal might lead to some regret in the Packers organization about their decision to keep only two RBs on the 53-man roster (to go with three fullbacks). That said, FB John Kuhn also could double as a RB.

UPDATE (2:00 p.m.): A second source has emerged to back up Glazer. It's Tom Silverstein from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel . According to Silverstein, Grant will need surgery to repair a torn ankle ligament.

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Posted on: September 13, 2010 1:24 pm

Justin Harrell out for season (again)

Posted by Andy Benoit

It just wouldn’t be football season without a Justin Harrell injury. The Packers have announced that defensive end Justin Harrell is out with a torn ACL.
J. Harrell
Harrell, a first-round pick in 2007, has played in just 14 games in his NFL-year career. He’s battled lower back problems in recent years, missing all of ’09 and a big chunk of ’08. Given that Green Bay drafted Mike Neal in the second round this past April, it’s likely the franchise will move on from Harrell after this season.

The Packers also announced that running back Ryan Grant is out at least this next week with an ankle injury. Brandon Jackson will start at running back in the home opener against Buffalo. (By the way, did you happen to see how fast Grant hopped on one foot into the locker room after the injury Sunday? If it’d been a 40-yard dash, Grant would have been fast enough to get drafted in one of the middle rounds.)

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