Hamstrings encapsulate the relatively big group of muscles, and the tendon, that run along the back of the thigh, and because they cover a lot of ground, there can be wide disparities on what happens when one is injured.
The hamstring injury that Christian Watson of the Packers is dealing with now, for example, appears to be pretty bad. It caused him to miss Week 1 against Chicago, and could force him out again in Week 2 against Atlanta. But the hamstring injury that caused Aaron Jones to sit out much of the second half of the Bears game—sustained when he scored his second touchdown of the afternoon—isn’t bad at all.
In fact, coach Matt LaFleur offered an update on Monday, and said he was encouraged.
“We’re still kind of going through that right now,” LaFleur said, per The Athletic. “I can tell you the encouraging thing was that he was able to jog off the field and we were in a situation where we didn’t need to put him back in the game.”
Jones Tallied 127 Yards in Week 1
Jones was impressive on Sunday, with nine rushes for 41 yards and a touchdown and two catches for 86 yards and another TD. On the second touchdown, Jones was seen reaching to clutch his hamstring area even before he crossed the goal line, and he spent the rest of the game stretching.
Jones was officially questionable to return, and never reappeared in the game. But, as LaFleur noted, the Packers were so far ahead, there was no need to put Jones back in.
“It was not a pull,” Jones said after the game. “I’ve pulled my hamstring before and I didn’t really feel a pull. It was just a little bite. Thankful for it (the team not allowing him back into the game), always looking out for my best interests.”
It’s a good bet that Jones will be back on the field Sunday. Atlanta allowed 154 rushing yards to the Panthers last week, and are regarded as having one of the worst defensive line/linebacker combos in the NFL. Expect Jones (and A.J Dillon) to take advantage.
Watson Explains Hammy Injury
As for Watson’s hamstring, that remains a work in progress. He spoke about the injury on Monday with Packers media, explaining it happened in practice just before Labor Day.
“I caught a ball, landed, went to come out of it and just felt it go a little bit,” Watson said, per SI.com. “It is what it is. I’m feeling good with where I’m at right now so I’m just going to keep on grinding and try to get back as soon as I can.”
Watson had an injury to his hamstring—the same one, his right hamstring—last year that cost him three games. This one could be the same length of absence, but there’s still a chance for him to be on the field against the Falcons.
He’s not going to rush back, but he is eager.
“Just watching the tape back and watching the game yesterday, I was dying to steal somebody’s pads, steal somebody’s helmet and get out there,” Watson said. “I’m excited to get out there and to be a part of it, regardless of what exactly my role is coming back right away, I know what I’m capable of and I’m hoping that it’s a big part of this thing.”