Eddie Lacy said he was downstairs in the team hotel when he “lost track of time,” leading him to miss curfew on the night before the Green Bay Packers’ game at the Detroit Lions last week.
The Packers tailback saw his snaps and carries sharply decline against the Lions. Lacy entered with consecutive 100-yard games for the first time in his career, but only had 4 yards on five carries against the Lions. His 19 snaps were two fewer than fullback John Kuhn.
What did he learn from the experience?
“Just be aware of time, honestly,” Lacy said. “It’s a life lesson. It’s a lesson learned, and then it’s something that you move forward from.”
Lacy said he “had a talk” with Packers coach Mike McCarthy before the game Thursday. He would not share the details of that discussion, saying it was an “internal” conversation. It was clearly an opportunity for the head coach to get his message across to a running back who has been demoted twice this season.
“We had a conversation internally,” Lacy said, “and they know that whenever I'm out on the field I'm going to do exactly what I have to do. I'm not a guy that makes a lot of mistakes, or bad things off the field either. So that's something they know they don't have to worry about.
“We put it behind us, and we’re moving forward. I think we both got things out in that conversation, and we’re both moving forward from that incident.”
Lacy wasn’t the only player who missed curfew. Backup running back Alonzo Harris was with Lacy, a source confirmed to Press-Gazette Media last week. While Lacy was demoted, the Packers cut ties with Harris, declining to even sign him back to the practice squad.
Lacy said it was “devastating” to see Harris released. It was also hard, Lacy said, to not get a single carry in the second half while the Packers mounted their miraculous comeback against the Lions.
“It was extremely tough,” Lacy said, “but it was a result of my own behavior. So it's just something that I had to deal with.”
McCarthy said Lacy has looked “rejuvenated” in practice this week, and the running back agreed. For all the inconsistency during his third NFL season, Lacy could still be a vital piece of the Packers’ stretch run.
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers said his confidence is unshaken in Lacy.
“It’s a long year,” Rodgers said, “and there’s going to be ups and downs throughout the year. I think we just need to stay level headed. You can inspire guys, but motivation comes from within — like I’ve said many times — and Eddie has great motivation. He’s a great football player. He understands how to play the game, and he’s ready to play every week. It’s just about getting an opportunity.
“When you see he’s gotten 20-plus carries, he’s made the most of his opportunities. We have to do a better job of converting on third downs and giving him more opportunities to have those first- and second-down runs with extended drives.”