In case of emergency: Randall Cobb, Ty Montgomery ready for running back duty

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Randall Cobb hasn't had to worry about his emergency quarterback duties, although the Green Bay Packers receiver could probably do it since he began his college career as the University of Kentucky's quarterback.

Running back, however, is another story.

Cobb already has carried five times this season as a runner out of the backfield. He might have to be on high alert this week given the Packers' uncertain situation at running back. Eddie Lacy and James Starks are banged up heading into Sunday's game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Receiver Ty Montgomery will be ready for running back duty too; he has a pair of carries this season.

When Cobb was asked whether he and Montgomery need to be on high alert for RB duty this week, he said: "Possibly."

"Honestly, I feel like we've always got to be ready," Montgomery said. "I know I'm giving you a generic answer, but we've always got to be ready because you never know what could happen."

What could happen is this: The Packers might be without one or both of their halfbacks. Lacy, who started the week looking like the bigger question mark, has progressed to the point that he thinks he’ll be able to play Sunday.

"Eddie did well yesterday with his limited work," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Friday. "We're making progress. So hopefully we'll continue to make progress."

Starks appears far less likely to play. He not only has a knee injury that began to bother him during a workout Tuesday, but also had to leave town to attend his grandmother's funeral this week and is not expected back in Green Bay until Saturday.

Lacy and Starks were listed as questionable for the game on Friday's injury report.

The Packers could also promote running back Don Jackson from the practice squad. They created room on the roster Thursday when quarterback Joe Callahan was released, but they could use that spot for defensive end Mike Pennel or cornerback Demetri Goodson. Both are eligible to play after serving four-game suspensions to start the season.

Either way, Cobb and Montgomery could continue to see snaps out of the backfield. Cobb has five carries for 12 yards, and Montgomery has netted zero yards on his two carries.

"I think the main thing for me is you're always involved no matter what," Montgomery said. "As I study the running back position more and more, unlike the receiver position, you're always involved -- whether you're protecting the quarterback or you're running the football. You could be playing receiver, and any receiver can tell you, you can be out there for 60 plays and get two targets. The rest of the time you're just running around trying to get open. I do like that aspect of it."