Packers running back AJ Dillon took a step forward in his second NFL season.
After playing sparingly as a rookie in 2020, Dillon appeared in every game last year and ran the ball 187 times while sharing backfield duty with Aaron Jones. Dillon picked up 803 yards on those carries, which made him a useful part of the Packers offense.
Packers coaches are looking to see even more out of him in 2022. Dillon had nine runs of 10 or more yards, including a season-best 36-yard run against the Bears. Running backs coach Ben Sirmans said the team wants to see more of those kinds of gains from Dillon this fall.
“He’s got that type of ability. He can make you miss in the open field. You think about the plays like the Chicago run that he had,” Sirmans said, via Zach Kruse of USAToday.com. “He’s faster than what most people think. He’s got the ability to put a little juke on you, even for a guy his size. So really it’s just putting all those facets to his game and putting them together. I do think he’ll have more explosive runs this year.”
Dillon outgained Jones, who missed two games, by four yards on the ground last season. If he hits more home runs in the coming months, the changing of the guard might be a permanent one in Green Bay.