The Green Bay Packers have had all kinds of injuries to deal with this season and all sorts of moving parts with their roster. And to deal with that, the team made another move Wednesday, claiming former Seattle running back Christine Michael.
Packers make it official, announce they claimed former Seattle RB Christine Michael off waivers and placed RB Don Jackson on IR.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 16, 2016
Michael, who was picked by the Seahawks in the second round of the NFL draft, played in all nine games for Seattle this season and carried the ball 10 times in five games. He even rushed 20 times for 106 yards in a win over San Francisco earlier in the season.
Last week against the Patriots, he ran the ball five times for 22 yards. For the season he has carried the ball 117 times for 469 yards and six touchdowns. He is averaging 4.1 yards per carry.
Those numbers prove Michael can hack it at the NFL level. He’s not a superstar, but can at least get four yards a carry. He also adds some much-needed depth behind James Starks, who has a history of injuries, especially when he is the main back.
Michael can help Starks carry the load. He is also capable of making a push for the starting job or at least a split with Starks. He isn’t super explosive, but he has two runs of more than 20 yards and also 27 runs for first downs.
Another benefit for him is that the Seahawks under Darrell Bevell run the west-coast offense, so his transition to Green Bay should be a smooth one.
It’s hard to say what role Michael will have Sunday night in Washington, but if he can be another reliable runner, maybe Green Bay can allow Mike Montgomery to play exclusively at wide receiver.
However, Michael is a big, physical back in the same mold as Starks and doesn’t offer much in terms of change-of-pace. He also isn’t a burner (4.57 40-time), but his toughness will be welcome on a team that seems to lack it right now.
All in all, it’s a good move by the Packers. They needed insurance and another body at running back and Michael should be up to the task.