— GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — The Green Bay Packers picked Alabama running back Eddie Lacy on Friday in the second round of the NFL draft with the 61st overall selection, landing a player widely pegged as a prime prospect for their first-round slot.
The Packers swapped second-round spots with San Francisco, moving down six places in exchange for an early sixth-round pick from the 49ers, the 173rd overall selection.
The 5-foot-11, 230-pound Lacy finished with a career average of 6.77 yards per rush, the most among active players last year in major college football, but he fell all the way down the board to the second-to-last spot in the second round.
There were concerns about his health, a hamstring problem that prevented him from participating in the NFL pre-draft combine in February and working out for scouts until a couple of weeks ago on the Alabama campus. His performance was considered a disappointment. But Lacy, on a conference call with Wisconsin reporters, said he couldn't worry about why he fell so far.
"At the end of the day it is what it is," said Lacy, a native of Louisiana who rushed for 1,322 yards and 17 touchdowns last season. "You can't do anything about it, and I'm just looking forward to being part of a new team and contributing as much as I can."
Lacy said he's never had hamstring trouble before this.
"It took a while to heal, longer than we expected. But as of right now, I'm 100 percent," Lacy said.
The Packers could use a powerful workhorse-style runner like Lacy, who helped lead the Crimson Tide to the national championship in January. The only other tailbacks on the roster are DuJuan Harris, James Starks and Alex Green. Combined, those three have six seasons on the roster and 1,608 career yards rushing.