Green Bay Packers Eddie Lacy on Pace for a 1,000 Yard Season

Green Bay Packers' Eddie Lacy is helped off the field during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)

Green Bay Packers’ Eddie Lacy is helped off the field during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)

If all ends well for Eddie Lacy, he should be on track to end the Packers’ four-year drought without a 1,000 yard rusher.

Don’t look now, but Eddie Lacy could be on track to become the Packers’ first 1,000 yard rusher since Ryan Grant in 2009.

Through seven games, Lacy has accumulated 446 rushing yards, an average of 63.7 yards. To put things in context, the Packers’ leading rusher in 2012 gained only 18 more yards over the entire season. At this rate, Lacy is projected to gain 1,019 yards by the end of the year.

Yet that figure is misleading. Lacy essentially missed two games earlier this year after sustaining a concussion from Brandon Meriweather on his first carry against Washington. A healthy Lacy should run for far more than that 1,019 yard figure.

In the five games which Lacy carried the ball more than one time, he averaged 87.2 yards. That projects to approximately 785 yards over his next nine games and a total of 1231 for the season.

Granted, there are other factors that could affect that projection. With James Starks recovered from a knee injury that cost him multiple games, the Packers are likely to reduce Lacy’s workload to keep him fresh for the playoffs. Additionally, as James Jonesand Randall Cobb return to action, the passing game will likely regain some of its prominence in the play calling. And, of course, Lacy could sustain another injury and miss time. However, the mere fact that we’re discussing how many rushing yards Lacy will gainbeyond 1,000 tells you how great things are going in Green Bay.

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Green Bay Packers James Starks And Eddie Lacy To Share Time In Green Bay Backfield

Green Bay Packers' Eddie Lacy is helped off the field during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)

Green Bay Packers’ Eddie Lacy is helped off the field during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)

With Packers running backs James Starks and Eddie Lacy finally healthy at the same time, both guys will be playing.

Even though the carries will be shared, Lacy is expected to remain the No. 1 guy.

“Eddie is running the ball well right now,” running backs coach Alex Van Pelt recently said, via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.  “I’m just trying to take some of the load off of Eddie and split up the remaining reps between Johnathan [Franklin] and James, because James and Johnathan still bring some unique abilities to the run game.”

“It’s a good problem.  It’s been awhile.  I like having three backs dressed up.”

Of course, it’s just a matter of time before one of the three running backs is injured again, considering the Packers luck.  Until that time, the goal will be to find a way to make each of them happy — and also to recognize which guy has the hot hand in any given game.  Though Lacy is a rookie from Alabama,  he’s played well. Starks was off to a great start before injuring his knee against the Bengals.

you can follow me on twitter @hunter_julius01