Aaron Rodgers took a huge step toward the playing field today when he hit practice in pads, but hold on … don’t get too excited about the possibility of his playing come Sunday.
When the Atlanta Falcons come to town Sunday to play the Packers, it will most likely be Matt Flynn under center to start the game.
That’s because the Packers have said all along that the overriding factor that will determine whether Rodgers is ready to play is medical. In other words, the doctors have to give their nod of approval before Rodgers plays.
That means that because it requires a scan of his clavicle to make that determination, and because there doesn’t seem to be another scan scheduled, it would seem that Rodgers will be riding the bench for at least one more week.
And because the Packers medical staff has been notoriously conservative in clearing players, one would think they would be even more cautious with Rodgers – one of the best players in all of the NFL at his position.
One might also consider what former Packers cornerback Charles Woodson had to say about Rodgers’ injury. Woodson should know something about it. He suffered two broken collarbones in the final three years he spent with the team.
“I went through the same thing last year and I wanted to come back Week 12, 13, 14,” Woodson said. “But the scans never gave us that confidence, so I didn’t come back until the playoffs.”
In fact, Woodson was out of commission for 11 weeks. Considering that Rodgers has been out for just more than four weeks, it would seem logical that he’s still got some healing to do.
While it’s not fair to compare Rodgers withWoodson because everyone heals at different rates and we don’t know whether Rodgers’ injury was on a level with that suffered by Woodson, it seems fair to think that Rodgers has at least one more week to recover.
So, while Rodgers has made strides in his recovery, it will be a stretch to think that he will play Sunday.
And while every Packers fan hopes that Rodgers has a Reggie White-like miraculous recovery, that is probably not going to happen.
Unless something changes drastically in the next 24-48 hours, we’ll be hoping that Matt Flynn comes back with a vengeance after his putrid performance Thanksgiving Day against Detroit.