Merely a week ago, nobody thought any James in the Green Bay Packers locker room would have a big game.
James Jones had zero catches and James Starks recorded no rushes against the San Francisco 49ers, and both had playmakers ahead of them on the roster that were considered a much greater threat to opposing defenses.
You can throw those assumptions in the trash after Sunday’s win against the Washington Redskins. The “James Gang,” brought it – James Jones erupted for 11 catches and 178 yards, while James Starks pounded his way to 132 yards on 20 attempts.
James Jones set a great example for his teammates. He was not salty at all after zero catches in the first game.
“One game, zero catches means nothing. It’s a long season. Our quarterback is trying to get everybody the ball. He’s trying to win, we’re trying to win. You’re going to have days like this, you’re going to have days like that.”
Starks brought about the first 100-yard rusher Green Bay has had since 2010. That’s 44 games without the threat of a running back. A motivated James Starks came into this game with a chip on his shoulder. After going out last season with an injury, the Packers drafted two talented running backs that nearly got him cut in the offseason.
Starks could have sat around feeling sorry for himself, but he responded with a newfound energy. James Jones noticed after the game.
“All training camp he’s had a chip on his shoulder, and he came in there and ran like that today … tried to punish people, tried to finish runs. If we can get that out of him every game, he adds another dimension.”
One can’t count anyone out in this offensive system – it’s built to afford everyone the opportunity to succeed. Sometimes that opportunity arises through getting a turn because of an injury, such as was the case with Starks; sometimes it comes about because it’s simply your turn – as was the case with Jones.
Either way, it was the James boys who were kings of the day Sunday.
Whose turn will it be next week?