All signs seemed to point toward Christian Watson returning in Week 18. Watson hinted that he would play against the Bears, noting that he was in a "really good spot." He practiced on Wednesday and Thursday but was held out on Friday. However, Matt LaFleur said it was part of the plan and that there was no setback.
And it's something the Packers had done previously with Watson. In Week 6, he was a limited participant at practice on Wednesday and Thursday. The Packers held him out on Friday, but he played the game.
His status for the playoffs remains up in the air, but the fact he was practicing last week is an encouraging sign. If a return against the Bears came a week too soon, an additional seven days may give him an opportunity to return for the postseason.
Even if Watson is back, he will likely be on a pitch count. But that's still significant. Watson enjoyed a breakout performance against the Cowboys last season, catching three touchdown passes in a thrilling overtime victory. We shouldn't expect a similar performance because Watson may not play as many snaps, but he can make an impact when he's out there. Just being on the field forces the defense to adjust their plans.
A return on Sunday would come at just the right time for Watson and the Packers.