GREEN BAY, Wis. -- It should not have taken the withdrawal of Adrian Peterson for Eddie Lacy to make the Pro Bowl, as the Green Bay Packers rookie did on Wednesday after Peterson pulled out because of an injury.
Lacy was seventh in the voting at a position where six players were selected.
Let’s compare Lacy’s numbers to the running backs originally voted in.
Lacy rushed for 1,178 yards, which was more than only one of the six -- Frank Gore of the San Francisco 49ers (1,128). But considering that Lacy missed one full game and more than three quarters of another because of the concussion he suffered in Week 2, then perhaps rushing yards per game is a more telling stat.
In that department, Lacy averaged 78.5 yards per game in the 15 games in which he appeared. That matched or bettered the average of two of the six backs originally voted in -- Gore (70.5 yards per game) and the Seattle Seahawks’ Marshawn Lynch (78.5 yards per game).
If you use 14 games as the divider given that Lacy was injured on his lone carry in the first quarter in Week 2, then Lacy’s average of 84.1 rushing yards per game would surpass one other back originally voted in -- the Chicago Bears' Matt Forte (83.7 yards per game) -- and would nearly match the Kansas City Chiefs' Jamaal Charles (85.8 yards per game).
To be sure, Lacy couldn’t match the Philadelphia Eagles' LeSean McCoy (who led the NFL with 1,607 yards rushing) in total yards or even Peterson (who averaged 90.4 yards per game over 14 games). But Lacy revived a running game that had not sent a running back to the Pro Bowl since 2004 (Ahman Green).