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James Starks takes Packers' No. 1 RB role from Lacy

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With Eddie Lacy's struggles, the Green Bay Packers made a switch to their running back pecking order prior to Sunday's tilt with the Detroit Lions.

Coach Mike McCarthy told reporters Wednesday he considers James Starks the team's No. 1 tailback, with Lacy the No. 2.

"I would say James is our No. 1 back right now going into Detroit," McCarthy said, via the Green Bay Press-Gazette. "He's earned that opportunity. I'm not a big believer in riding one back the whole season. We'll stay with the one-two punch."

Lacy's difficulties have caused much consternation throughout Wisconsin, especially during the Packers' two-game losing skid.

The third-year back is averaging 3.7 yards per carry on 83 attempts for just 308 yards. In his last four games, Lacy hasn't earned more than 38 rushing yards and has tallied more than 2.1 yards per rush only once.

Whether due to injuries (ankle, groin) or carrying extra weight, Lacy hasn't been effective creating holes and has lacked burst. Lacy was limited in practice Wednesday after exiting early in Week 9 with a groin injury.

Starks has been by far the better back in recent weeks -- something Lacy himself admitted to on Wednesday -- including a 10-carry, 112-yard performance in Week 6. His game film displays a quick burst and ability to make cuts in the backfield to hit holes Lacy was missing.

"He's the better player between the two of us right now," Lacy said, according to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

Neither back has been stellar this season, but Starks gives the Packers the best shot to put aside their losing streak. Facing a Lions defense ranked 30th in the NFL against the run (133.8 yards per game), the Packers have a great chance to get back on track on the ground and in the win column.

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