As we mentioned yesterday, the Green Bay Packers win over the San Francisco 49ers likely came at a cost. The cost is, unfortunately, higher than anyone had planned for, as both outside linebacker Aaron Kampman and cornerback Al Harris will be lost for the season with torn ACLs.
While the Packers will be down two starters, all is not lost.
Kampman missed last week’s win over the Dallas Cowboys with a concussion and rookie Brad Jones played admirably in his place, recording seven solo tackles. While Jones isn’t the pass rusher Kampman is, he is faster and stronger in coverage.
At cornerback, Tramon Williams has played extensively. He started nine games last season, primarily when Harris was out with what was reported as an injured spleen. On the season, Williams finished with 57 tackles, five interceptions and two forced fumbles.
There isn’t much of a drop off between Harris and Williams, but where Harris’ absence will hurt the Packers is behind Williams. Having Williams in the starting lineup means the Packers will have to play Jarrett Bush more often. If you’ve ever seen Jarrett Bush play, you know that’s a bad thing. If there’s a cornerback in the league with worse instincts or who makes more stupid mistakes in coverage, I’m not aware of him.
The Packers other options at the position are rookie Brandon Underwood and Derrick Martin, whom the team has been using at safety, but played cornerback before coming over from Baltimore.
For his part, Harris says he’ll be back in six months, and that he plans to play a few more years.