James Starks isn’t getting over his turf toe

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Packers running back James Starks has missed out on opportunities to stake a claim to a spot in the backfield rotation because of turf toe and it doesn’t sound like he’ll be healthy enough to take advantage of them anytime soon.

“James Starks, just talking to the medical staff, is coming along slow,” coach Mike McCarthy said, via Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. “So we’ll just continue to treat him. He hasn’t made a whole of progress here of late.”

Starks hasn’t practiced since suffering the injury in the team’s first preseason game, leaving him to watch as Cedric Benson arrived and moved right to the top of the depth chart of the position. The Packers have also been taking the wraps off of second-year player Alex Green as he gets further away from the torn ACL that spoiled his rookie season and both backs appear to be better fits for what the Pack wants out of the position this year than Starks did in his brief availability during camp.

That raises the question of what kind of future Starks has in Green Bay. The uncertainty regarding his health makes it hard to hold a roster spot for him if the Packers risk losing a player who can definitely contribute to the team in the early part of the season, especially if the Pack isn’t sure he’d be getting many reps when he’s healthy. Their other choices would be to put Starks on injured reserve or release him, both of which would leave them without his services when and if he gets well.

In theory, Starks would be an ideal candidate to take advantage of the proposed change to injured reserve which would have allowed a team to activate a player after eight weeks. The league and the NFLPA couldn’t agree to pass the rule because the league wanted to change the rules regarding padded practices in exchange for implementing the revised IR rule and a later trade deadline.

Without that option available, it looks like the Packers are going to have a tough choice to make about Starks in the coming days.


17 responses to “James Starks isn’t getting over his turf toe

  1. he had one good game in the SB playoff run. people constantly overestimate his contributions that year. time to move on, he’s done nothing to keep a spot.

  2. I feel bad for him, but the best case scenario for him would probably be IR right now. Of course then he has to live down the implications of missing the season with a toe injury.

  3. Packers don’t need a dominant runner. But when teams are keeping both safeties deep and only playing six in the box, GB has to have someone who can make them pay with at least 5 or 6 yard runs. If Benson can do that, all is well.

  4. Cut him and Harrell, trade for a veteran backup not named Vince Young, let Benson run the ball and we will be fine.

  5. I always felt Starks has a lot of potential but if the guy can’t stay healthy then let him hit the open market. I would hate to see someone get let go who is maybe lower on the depth chart but is a good contributor on special teams and can stay healthy. If last Thursday was an indication, granted it was only a few carries then this team can be fine with Benson, Green and Saine.

  6. Toby Gerhart, Micheal Bush, Ben Tate, heck…even Robert Turbin is better than this bum! He wouldn’t last on a real team but to the Whackers he’s as good as Forte and Adrian Peterson. You Whacker Cheese heads are funny..

  7. I don’t recall seeing anyone talking about how much we love him, or how he’s the equivalent of any of the aforementioned players (although Robert Turbin, come on man). He is what he is, a player who right now is worth a spot on the IR.

  8. It doesn’t matter who the packers running back is, no team will respect their running game. I can see in the preseason, that teams are not biting on the play action fakes anymore and I think that’ll carry onto the regular season…..hence>>Aaron Rodgers completion percentage and INTs. That is all.

  9. Turf toe is an injury that will longer on all season, so even if he can play he won’t be very effective. Throw him on IR snicker him get healthy. He’s still cheap enough.

  10. Not really a hard decision for the Packers. Ted never would have went for Ced if he felt Starks was the answer for the team.

    McCarthy prizes availability quite a bit. Starks isn’t available. Hasn’t been available and when available he’s not effective. He’s a liability in the passing game as he often blows blitz pick ups (watch him continue to go to Aaron’s right instead of blocking the blitz from the left)

    Packers go into the season with Ced, Green, Saine and Kuhn. Starks

    As to no team respecting the Packers’ running game – it was very evident that as soon as Ced came in the game – the opposing D changed and if he can keep a LB looking into the backfield so Finely can get open – that’s the plan. Ced averaged something like 6.2 yards a carry compared to the 2.7 that Starks and co were getting.

    Any team can stack the box if they want – Aaron will kill them in the air – drop all into coverage? This team will pound the rock with Green/Ced.

    Face it – GB got better with Ced and there’s nothing to make you think Starks, even if healthy, wouldn’t beat him out.

  11. Vikings28 must have missed Bensons debut in Cinci because Playaction worked like a charm in that game.

    Best case scenario would be to put Starks on IR to put off the decision to cut him or not till next year.

    I don’t know about anyone else but Im closely following the Saints final cuts to see which of their RBs they decide to cut. Ingram, Thomas Sproles are locks but Chris Ivory and Travaris Cadet are battling for the last spot unless they decide to keep 5 RBs this season. Either guy would be an upgrade to Saine IMO.

  12. virger says:
    Aug 28, 2012 4:05 PM
    he had one good game in the SB playoff run. people constantly overestimate his contributions that year. time to move on, he’s done nothing to keep a spot.

    You took the words out of my mouth. Despite the Eagles’ game he hasn’t shown much. I don’t know why he gets such a long leash for a one-game-wonder.

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