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The Packers made big splash in the 2013 NFL draft when they selected running back Eddie Lacy in the second round. They then made an even bigger splash when they picked running back Johnathan Franklin in the fourth round.
If all goes as expected, Lacy will be the feature back for the Packers, especially in short-yardage situations. He is a big back at 5'11", 231 pounds, and his track record at Alabama was outstanding.
As a senior for the Crimson Tide, Lacy rushed for 1,322 yards and had 17 touchdowns. He also caught 22 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns. He played well in big games, with 181 yards rushing in the SEC title game vs. Georgia and 140 rushing yards in the BCS title game vs. Notre Dame.
But he isn't the only rookie running back with a sterling track record in college. As a senior at UCLA, Franklin rushed for 1,734 yards and 13 touchdowns while catching 33 passes for 323 yards and three more touchdowns.
For his career as a Bruin, the 5'10", 205-pound Franklin had 4,403 yards rushing and 31 touchdowns. He also snagged 58 passes and three more scores.
I expect that talent and production to continue in the pros for Franklin, as well as for Lacy. The two of them should become a great thunder-and-lightning combination for the Packers at running back for years to come.
Franklin could excel as the third-down back in the prolific passing offense of the Packers, as he does everything well: running, receiving and blocking.