This is my final plea.
I am writing this on the eve of the final NFL roster cuts. By 4PM ET on Saturday, 22 Packers will be off the team. Some will return via the practice squad. Some will be picked up by other teams. Maybe some will be traded and some will take that long drive home to Realityville.
But there's one guy that shouldn't be doing any of those things. One guy that I think would be the perfect #2 running back on the Packers. Kregg Lumpkin. OK, you can stop rolling your eyes. Sure you've heard this from me before. But hey, I really believe it.
And yet, it seems that everyone is in love with DeShawn Wynn and has Lumpkin gone. Why? What do you all see that I don't?
Both Lumpkin and Wynn have had their injury problems, so lets throw that out. Is he a better receiver that Lumpkin? NO. Is he a better blocker than Lumpkin? YES. Is he a better runner than Lumpkin? NO.
Oh, you don't believe that last one? We'll to me, a good running back is one that gains yards when he has the ball. Lets look at some facts:
In the 2008 preseason, Lumpkin was the Packers leading rusher (38 carries, 153 yards, 4.0-yard average, one touchdown) and also added seven receptions for 59 yards and another TD. DeShawn Wynn was CUT by the Packers in favor of: Kregg Lumpkin.
In this preseason, lets look at these numbers:
Wynn, 17 carries, 49 yards, 2.8 YPC
Lumpkin, 27 carries, 95 yards, 3.8 YPC
Sutton, 40 carries, 191 yards, 4.8 YPC
Obviously, Sutton deserves to make the team. But getting down to that last RB spot (and like Brian Carriveau at Railbird Central, I think the Packers may keep four), Lumpkin offers much more. Lumpkin has moves, picks a hole quickly and is able to bounce outside if needed. Wynn just plods forward.
Watching tape of the Tennessee game, I often spotted Wynn not following his lead blocker, and instead, "running to darkness". Yes, he had six carries for 11 yards in that game. Watching that same tape, you'll see Kregg Lumpkin with some great moves and "running to daylight". He had 9 carries for 34 yards and a touchdown.
All I've heard this preseason is how Lumpkin hasn't show anything. Well what has Wynn shown? Somebody PLEASE tell me.
One of the few allies I have in this area is fellow Packers blogger D. D. Driver, who is on record as saying "BTW, I am a Wynn hater. I don’t know what it is about the guy. I think it is the cult that has somehow grown up around him that see him as some sort of superstar in the making that just drives be batty."
Now, I don't know how he feels about Lumpkin, but it's obvious he doesn't get the Wynn hype, as I don't. More surprising to me is a late change of heart shown by Greg Bedard, a Packers beat writer for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Greg has had little good to say about Lumpkin, yet in his last projected 53-man roster, he has Wynn gone and Lumpkin in. Bedard also points out Wynn's "plodding" style and Lumpkin's ability to always gain positive yardage.
Now if the Packers only keep three running backs and both Wynn and Lumpkin are out, so be it. But if it comes down to a choice for a roster spot between Lumpkin and Wynn, you know where I stand.
You can also follow Jersey Al on twitter.