Packers: Aaron Jones set to play in third preseason game vs. Raiders

Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Aaron Jones (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) /

Aaron Jones is expected to play against the Oakland Raiders on Thursday night.

Aaron Jones is one of the most important players on offense for the Green Bay Packers, and he is set to make his first appearance of the year in the team’s third preseason game against the Oakland Raiders.

Jones missed time at the start of training camp due to hamstring tightness. The Packers were cautious, and despite returning to practice prior to the second preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens, he was inactive for the game.

Now at 100 percent, head coach Matt LaFleur plans for Jones to play in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada on Thursday in the team’s third preseason contest.

“I anticipate him playing a series or so,” LaFleur said on Tuesday.

It’s important for the starters to get some game time in the preseason, even if it’s just for the first quarter. This game will be beneficial for Jones, who will be getting snaps for the first time in preseason this year.

Set for a featured role in LaFleur’s offense, the Packers will be hoping the 2018 NFL yards-per-carry leader will make a fast start to the season, beginning against the Chicago Bears in two weeks.

The main priority in Thursday’s game will, of course, be to avoid injury. But this game will also help Jones get prepared for the regular season opener versus the Bears.

If Jones stays healthy for the entire season, will he hit 1,000 yards rushing? Last season, he only needed another 272 yards, which he could’ve achieved had he not missed two games to injury, and another two due to suspension.

LaFleur’s emphasis on the run game should lead to more carries than Jones’ 133 attempts in the 2018 season.

LaFleur wouldn’t say on Tuesday whether Aaron Rodgers will play on Thursday night, but most of the Packers offense looks to be fully healthy ahead of the third preseason game. That’s good news just two weeks away from a tough opening game against the Bears.