It hasn’t been an easy start to the season – or a career – for the Packers’ top draft pick in 2017.
The cornerback who the Packers believe is their best chance at a shutdown cover man couldn’t finish his rookie season because of a lingering shoulder injury that eventually required surgery. He missed two of the first four games this season because of a pulled groin.
His return came Sunday at Ford Field, where it started badly and ended bloody.
It began innocently enough. Blocking on a punt return, King was engaged with Lions safety Charles Washington when the ball hit no more than a yard in front of them. Off the bounce, it appeared to graze one of them – either Washington on the arm or King in the back. The ball then rolled to the Packers’ 1-yard line, where Detroit touched it down where to buy nfl jerseys cheap
King thought that was where the Packers would take over. Instead, the officials ruled the ball went off him, therefore giving the Lions the ball at the 1, where they scored on the next play.
“It didn’t hit me,” King insisted a day later. “When I was out there on the field, I [looked up] and I [saw] it actually hit him. The thing is, if you see my reaction, if it would’ve hit me, I would’ve turned around and tried to get it. I just ran off the field. I thought they were celebrating because they downed it at the 1. I didn’t even know that’s what they were cheering about until, like, the replay. No, it didn’t hit me though.”
It would be hard to blame King if he wondered when things will turn around for him. The Packers drafted him with the first pick of the second round (No. 33 overall) to be the matchup corner their defense lacked since the end of Sam Shields’ career here in 2016. They liked King’s rare size (6-foot-3) and speed combination at the position.
Last season, Packers defensive assistant coach Joe Whitt said “you haven’t seen the real Kevin King yet” after he went on injured reserve. Whitt made that comment because he watched King play with essentially one arm due to his ailing left shoulder – an injury that dated to his college days at Washington.buy cheap authentic nfl jerseys
This summer, Whitt predicted the “real” King would be on display during training camp. But King injured his other shoulder. Then came the groin injury during the Week 2 game against Minnesota – an injury that coach Mike McCarthy said at the time the defense did not handle well, allowing the Vikings to come back to tie the game.