Green Bay Packers rookie running back Eddie Lacy rushed for 41 yards on 14 carries with a touchdown and a lost fumble in a Week 1 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
Lacy hasn’t fumbled since and has rushed for 1,178 yards on 284 carries this season.
Lacy will get another shot at the 49ers on Sunday when Green Bay hosts San Francisco at Lambeau Field in an NFC wild-card matchup.
“He’s a totally different back. It’s night and day,” receiver James Jones said, per the Green Bay Press Gazette. “Way more comfortable, way more confident. They’ll have to account for him. I know by them watching film and seeing what he’s done during the season, they know he’s not the same player he was Week 1. It’s good for us to have him in the position he is now.”
Lacy has been dealing with a sprained ankle for the past month, but was able to participate in his first padded Thursday practice since suffering the injury Dec. 9 in a 22-21 win over Atlanta.
“He’s always been a hard runner. He’s just gotten into a groove,” offensive coordinator Tom Clements said. “It’s unusual for a single tackler to bring him down. He’s always fighting and pushing hard and trying to get extra yards, and that motivates (the offensive line) to do what they can to help him get his yards.
“He’s just become more consistent, more productive, but he’s always been running hard.”
Lacy takes pride in being able to catch the ball out of the backfield. He’s averaging 3.2 catches per game over the last 10 contests, and has 257 yards receiving this season.
“He loves to catch the ball. He calls himself ‘Moss’ — Eddie Moss Lacy,” receiver Jordy Nelson said with a smile. “He’s made some pretty good catches. I think it’s big for our screen game and even just our play-action game of getting him out in the flats and making some catches, and I think it’s huge in the screen game.”
Expect Lacy to prove to the 49ers that he is a “totally different” back.