Benson Likely To Start Week 1 For Green Bay

Benson likely to be Packers' Week-1 starter

8/28/12 in NFL   |   Matthew_Shovlin   |   735 respect

Green Bay Packers' running back Alex Green has reportedly stated that fellow tailback Cedric Benson will be "leading off" as the Packers' running back in the season opener.

Aug 23, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Green Bay Packers running back Cedric Benson (32) runs during the first half against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIREBenson recently signed with the Packers after waiting most of the summer to get a deal for more than the veteran's minimum of $825,000, which never happened. Since his signing, scouts have said that he makes the Packers even better, and that he looks "really good." They've also said he looks "quick," which isn't a word often used to describe the eight year man out of Texas in recent years. The Packers' running backs coach has also said that Benson adds explosiveness to the team.

Benson is coming off of three straight thousand yard rushing seasons, but he has failed to average 4.0 yards per carry the past two years. That low average, however, could be due to the Bengals shoddy offensive line, which was graded in the bottom third of Pro Football Focus' rankings. Playing with an elite offense and a strong line in front of him, Benson has fallen into a situation that will give him plenty of opportunities to succeed.

Benson doesn't have a ton of competition in the backfield for touches. His main threat looks to be the player who confirmed Benson's likeliness of starting, Alex Green. Green is a second year player out of Hawaii who, thanks to a season ending knee injury, only has three career carries. If Benson is truly as good as scouts and coaches say he is, he should have no problem holding off green for early down work.

Then you have James Starks, the playoff sensation from the Packers' Super Bowl run. Starks, dealing with a nagging turf toe injury, was reportedly on the roster bubble when the Packers made their first cuts. They obviously don't have very big plans for him.

Where other running backs will see significant time is on third downs and in obvious passing situations. Benson has never been a threat to catch balls out of the backfield, and the Packers won't try to turn him into something he's not.

Benson's stock is rising quickly in fantasy leagues, and with good reason. The starting running back on the league's most prolific offense should be of solid value to any fantasy team.
Notify me by email about comments that follow mine. Preview

8/29/12   |   BearcatFan   |   6 respect

I'm still struggling to realize why the Bengals let him go.