Packers: Darnell Savage return would be huge boost for defense

Green Bay Packers, Darnell Savage (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers, Darnell Savage (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Entering an important part of the schedule, the Green Bay Packers could get a key part of their defense back.

First-round pick Darnell Savage looked on his way to potentially win the Defensive Rookie of the Year award early in the season, but an ankle injury has kept him out of the past two games.

But his status for Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs appears to be looking much better. Savage not only returned to practice on Wednesday, but he was listed as a full participant on the Packersinjury report.

That doesn’t guarantee he’ll be available, of course, but to be a full participant this early in the week is generally a good sign that a player will be able to play, barring a setback.

And this would be huge news for the Packers’ defense, up against a talented offense, even if Patrick Mahomes doesn’t play.

Savage played the majority of the snaps in Green Bay’s opening four games. In that time, the Packers allowed an average of 188 passing yards per game.

He got hurt early in the Week 5 game against the Cowboys, only playing on 27 percent of the snaps, according to Pro Football Reference. That was a significant drop as he’d almost never left the field in the previous games. Unsurprisingly, the pass defense wasn’t as successful, allowing 441 passing yards to the Cowboys.

In the two games Savage has missed, the Packers have allowed 286 passing yards per game.

Savage is tied for third on the team in passes defended, despite missing almost three games. He has an interception and a forced fumble.

Playing against an offense featuring Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce and Sammy Watkins (assuming he’s healthy), getting Savage back would be great news.

With Savage practicing fully, it sure looks like there’s a good chance he’ll be back in Week 8.