The running back position has been a revolving door for the Green Bay Packers this season due to widespread injury issues — a problem the organization attempted to address yet again on December 5.
Kenyan Drake, most recently of the Cleveland Browns practice squad, posted a photo to his X account on December 5 that was complete with a Green Bay color scheme and the classic Packers “G.” It also contained a caption.
“Good afternoon, #32 Kenyan Drake,” the photo said.
Those around the NFL universe, including ESPN’s Field Yates, took Drake’s message as a clear indication he was signing with the Packers. Yates and the rest were correct, which Drake later confirmed via public comments.
“I could feel the energy around the building today,” Drake said, per Josina Anderson of CBS Sports. “It was legendary, and you can feel the legacy and bright future they have. I’m excited to get to work to help them take that next step towards the ultimate goal.”
Kenyan Drake Has Produced Meaningfully at Several Stops Across NFL
Drake has bounced around the league since the Miami Dolphins selected him in the third round of the 2016 NFL draft (No. 73 overall) out of Alabama. But despite taking at least one regular-season snap for four franchises to go along with his stints on the Browns’ and Indianapolis Colts‘ practice squads this year, Drake has been an effective rusher.
He appeared in two games with the Baltimore Ravens this season and played in 12 contests there the year prior. The Las Vegas Raiders inked Drake to a two-year, $11 million deal in March 2021. Drake has also played for the Arizona Cardinals.
All told, the 29-year-old running back has appeared in 103 games across the course of his eight-year professional career, starting 44 of those contests. He has amassed 3,866 rushing yards and 33 rushing touchdowns on 868 carries, per Pro Football Reference. Drake has also caught 218 passes for 1,655 receiving yards and 8 touchdowns.
Kenyan Drake Offers Support Behind AJ Dillon, as Aaron Jones Battles Injury
Drake joins a running back room captained at the moment by career backup AJ Dillon. Dillon has assumed the lion’s share of the workload in the absence of starter Aaron Jones, who has missed the previous two games due to a knee injury after sitting out multiple contests earlier this season due to a strained hamstring.
Dillon carried the ball 18 times in the Packers’ home win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Night Football, gaining 73 yards in the process. Backup running backs Patrick Taylor and James Robinson also saw action, with Taylor carrying the football twice for 29 yards and Robinson gaining 2 yards on one carry.
The Packers (6-6) have won three consecutive games and played themselves back into the thick of the NFC playoff hunt, mostly on the strength of quarterback Jordan Love’s arm. However, with an injury to Christian Watson on Sunday, Green Bay may need to lean more heavily on the run game to supplement its offensive production through the air.
If that proves the case, there is a world in which the Drake signing has significant implications for the Packers down the stretch.