It won't take long for the Green Bay Packers to wonder if they should've retained Eddie Lacy.
The Packers selected Lacy in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft, and the former Alabama bruiser ran for 2,317 yards and 20 touchdowns in his first two seasons (31 games).
Then weight problems, occasional ineffectiveness and injuries caught up with him and he started just 17 games between 2015-16 and tallied fewer rushing yards (1,118) and touchdowns (three) combined in those two seasons than either of his first two years.
Despite not having a single running back (not receiver-turned-running back) on the roster at the start of free agency, the Packers did not re-sign Lacy. On March 14, he agreed to a one-year, $5.5-million deal with the Seattle Seahawks. Though the Packers did re-sign Christine Michael, announced their commitment to Ty Montgomery and will likely draft at least one running back, they'll enter the 2017 season with a thin group.
And in Week 1, that thin group will face Lacy's new team in one of the best early-season matchups in the entire league.
In addition to Eddie Lacy's Week 1 showdown with his former team, here are five other delectable facing-former-team matchups during the 2017 NFL season.
Week 1: A.J. Bouye (JAC) at Houston Texans
Let's be honest; most non-Texans fans had never heard of A.J. Bouye before last season.
The former undrafted free agent (2013) had eight total starts and five interceptions from 2013-15. After Week 7 of last season, the 6-foot, 186-pounder was the highest-graded cornerback in the NFL by Pro Football Focus and began earning from praise from across the league.
He capitalized on it with a five-year, $65-million deal with the Jaguars and will now face his former team twice per year. Though he's far a Texans' legend — or even a beloved superstar — his performances against whomever plays quarterback for Houston will be watched closely.
Week 2: Mike Glennon (CHI) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
You can pretend you don't care about Mike Glennon's contract or upcoming season with the Chicago Bears. You do.
All eyes will be on Jay Cutler's $45-million replacement (three years, $19 million guaranteed) the entire season and while Bucs-Bears still won't break Nielsen ratings or Glennon didn't have a messy departure from Tampa Bay, the Week 2 matchup is still very interesting.
Get ready for some scalding hot takes if he outperforms Jameis Winston.
Week 2: Brandin Cooks (NE) vs. New Orleans Saints
Two-time 1,000-yard receiver Brandin Cooks landed in New England on March 10 in a widely applauded trade by the Patriots. The Saints traded the former first-round pick and a 2017 fourth-rounder in exchange for first- and third-round picks in 2017.
With Cooks gone, Drew Brees has Michael Thomas, Willie Snead and newly signed Ted Ginn Jr. leading his receiving corps. That trio is nothing to scoff at but the Saints still need Cooks. Brees has overcome the losses of elite playmakers in the past but never has he been left with such a thin group.
Week 9: T.J. Lang (DET) at Green Bay Packers
For the second-straight offseason, a former Packers' Pro Bowl guard is headed to a rival. After cutting Josh Sitton during the 2016 preseason — and later watching him sign with the Chicago Bears — the Packers did not re-sign T.J. Lang, who joined his hometown Detroit Lions.
The first of Lang's two matchups against his former team is Week 9 on Monday Night Football in Green Bay.
Week 13: Stephon Gilmore (NE) at Buffalo Bills
It wasn't shocking that Bills' Pro Bowl cornerback and former 10th-overall pick Stephon Gilmore got a five-year, $65-million deal. It was shocking who gave him that deal, the New England Patriots.
Though the Patriots annually dip into the free-agent pool, the defending Super Bowl champs splurged this offseason, giving Gilmore $40 million in guaranteed money — possibly in anticipation that Malcolm Butler would be playing elsewhere in 2017. Staying within the division, Gilmore will face his old team twice.
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