A chorus of cheers from teammates welcomed Ryan Grant back to the Green Bay Packers’ facilities on Wednesday morning, only hours after re-signing with his former team.
While the veteran running back doesn’t have a locker in the main area – his previous one now belonging to Cedric Benson – the Packers’ fifth all-time leading rusher was happy to be back with the team following a potentially season-threatening knee injury to James Starks.
Grant, who rushed for 4,016 yards from 2007-11, was allowed to walk after last season and went unsigned through the offseason until finally catching on with the Washington Redskins where he played one game before being released.
When in need of a running back when Starks went down with turf toe last August, the Packers opted to sign Benson over Grant. With Starks now out indefinitely with a knee injury, the second call went to Grant, but there's no hard feelings on his part.
“That's the business aspect of it,” Grant said. “I came into this league understanding the business aspect and I think that, I don't want to say made things a little easier, but at the same time it made me understand some things. I don't take things personal in this business.
“Like I said, at the end of the day, I didn't come here for a feel-good story, I came back here to help this team and contribute.”
Along with signing with the Redskins, Grant had workouts with the New York Giants, Detroit and Chicago, and took a visit to New England.
After receiving a call Tuesday from the Packers, Grant worked out for them Wednesday morning before signing in time to practice.
Grant's expected to play Sunday against Detroit, which doubles as his 30th birthday, but second-year running back Alex Green likely will handle a majority of the snaps with Grant, fullback John Kuhn and recently promoted DuJuan Harris working behind him.
The wait was long, but Grant is ready to put his best foot forward in his second stint with the Packers.
“I'm not surprised just the way my life goes,” Grant said. “It'll be interesting. I do turn 30 on Sunday. We'll see but, as of right now, looks like it could be a good birthday.”
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