Packers RB Eddie Lacy probable for Buffalo game despite hip injury

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GREEN BAY, Wisconsin — The Green Bay Packers are hoping Eddie Lacy can make some noise on the road against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

The Packers listed Lacy, who exited their last game with a hip injury, as probable on the injury report.

Based on that designation, coach Mike McCarthy feels "pretty confident" the Packers' primary back can continue playing after the team's rushing leader was hurt in Green Bay's 43-37 win over the Atlanta Falcons on Monday night.

"He's getting better," McCarthy said Friday. "I know he did the strength and conditioning work and all the other work in that area today. He's making progress, and hopefully he can practice tomorrow."

The injury kept Lacy from playing the Packers' final series, when they ran out the clock the last 2-plus minutes to stem a big second-half comeback from the Falcons.

The NFC North-leading Packers (10-3) were off the field Friday and will practice Saturday morning before they leave for New York.

The team estimated Lacy would have been a limited practice participant Friday, the same status he had in Green Bay's practices the previous two days.

Lacy, who has rushed for 843 yards and seven touchdowns and also has four touchdown catches, made a brief appearance in the locker room during media availability Friday. But he declined to talk.

On Thursday, Lacy told reporters his hip was hurting and there was some uncertainty about him being able to play Sunday.

"It all depends on how my body feels," he said. "If I can go out and play through that pain without setting the team back or putting the team at a disadvantage, I'll go out and do that. If not, then I'm not going to risk that."

McCarthy wouldn't say whether Lacy could have a reduced role against the Bills (7-6), who have the league's fifth-rated defense.

"We'll see how the game goes," McCarthy said.

James Starks is prepared when needed.

Green Bay's first game against the Bills in eight years at Ralph Wilson Stadium, where the Packers have never won in five games, will be a homecoming for Lacy's top backup, who grew up in Niagara Falls, New York, and was a college standout at Buffalo.

A sixth-round draft pick by the Packers in 2010, Starks said he had rounded up 20 game tickets for his family.

"Other people already had their tickets for a while, so they've been waiting for this game since the beginning of the year," Starks said. "It's going to be fun."

Starks is coming off his most productive game of the season. After getting a total of only 17 carries for 22 yards in Green Bay's previous five games, Starks ran the football 10 times for a season-high 75 yards and a touchdown against Atlanta.

A career-high-tying 41-yard run by Starks shortly after the 2-minute warning in the fourth quarter enabled Green Bay to exhaust the rest of the time.

"I feel very comfortable going with Eddie and James," McCarthy said. "It's something that we spent the whole off-season getting ready for, and both guys have done a great job of being three-down players. So we can continue to just keep playing with Eddie and James, and DuJuan Harris is doing a good job."

NOTES: The Packers ruled out CB Davon House for Sunday's game with a shoulder injury. House, who didn't practice this week, said Friday the injury to his right shoulder happened when he landed on the knee of Falcons receiver Julio Jones late in Monday's game. "They say my strength is where we want it to be," said House, who has range of motion in the shoulder. He was due to have the shoulder looked at by a specialist outside Green Bay later in the day. "It's not your everyday injury," McCarthy said. . Probable for Sunday's game are starting guards T.J. Lang (ankle) and Josh Sitton (toe). LB Jamari Lattimore (ankle) is out for the second straight game.

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