Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers gets sacked by Chicago
Bears defensive end Shea McClellin during an NFL football
game Monday, Nov. 4, 2013, in Green Bay, Wis.
GREEN BAY — The
Green Bay Packers aren't ruling out Aaron Rodgers for Sunday's
game against the Atlanta Falcons even though the star quarterback
hasn't yet been medically cleared to play since breaking his left
collarbone a month ago.
Mike McCarthy said that Rodgers will practice Wednesday in a
limited fashion but that backup Matt Flynn would take the snaps
with the starters.
to play, there's no question about it," McCarthy said
Tuesday. "But it's a medical situation. He has a clear
understanding where he is as far as the process of getting back on
the field. He feels good, and we're going to see what he can do
Speaking on his
weekly radio show Tuesday night, Rodgers confirmed that he had an
X-ray and CT scan earlier in the day and acknowledged that the
outlook wasn't as promising as he'd hoped when he met with team
physician Dr. Pat McKenzie.
"I saw the
X-rays and scan," Rodgers said. "We're now four weeks
and one day from my fracture. I've made a lot of progress. A lot
of it is just the bone healing. Bone takes three to six weeks to
heal. We all hoped we'd be on the short end of that.
"I trust Doc
McKenzie. When I'm ready to play and everyone is on board, then
I'm going to play," he added. "After we sat down
Tuesday, I haven't had that full clearance. I'm not ruling myself
out. I know there's a rush to get back out there. I feel it
internally, but also externally. I desperately want to be out
there, but it has to look good."
The Packers enter
Sunday's game at 5-6-1 and are 0-4-1 since Rodgers was injured on
the opening series of their loss to the Chicago Bears on Nov. 4.
They've gone from 5-2 and on a four-game winning streak to needing
to win their final four games and get some help to qualify for the
playoffs for the fifth straight year.
I'm not going to be able to play if I don't get medically
cleared," Rodgers said.
Amid reports the
team might shut Rodgers down if the team was out of playoff
contention, McCarthy denied such a discussion has occurred.
been no internal conversation about shutting Aaron Rodgers
down," McCarthy said. "Aaron wants to play. When he's
healthy, he'll be given the opportunity to play."
If Rodgers is not
medically cleared to face the Falcons, Flynn is set to make his
second straight start.
40-10 Thanksgiving Day loss to the Detroit Lions, Flynn completed
only 10 of 20 passes for 139 yards with no touchdowns and one
interception. He was sacked seven times, including once for a
safety. He also lost a fumble on a center exchange.
Flynn took over
when McCarthy benched Scott Tolzien during a 26-26 tie with the
Minnesota Vikings on Nov. 24, when Flynn rallied the Packers from
a 23-7 fourth-quarter deficit.
Asked why he
would go with Flynn over Tolzien, who took over for an injured
Seneca Wallace against Philadelphia on Nov. 10 and started the
team's Nov. 17 loss to the New York Giants, McCarthy cited Flynn's
experience. While he didn't sign with the team until Nov. 12,
Flynn was Rodgers' primary backup from 2008 through 2011.
think Matt's further along as far as game experience and just a
little more comfortable in the system," McCarthy said.
"Scott's worked extremely hard. Frankly for both Scott and
Matt, Scott really had one week of full reps to get ready for the
Giants game. This will be Matt's first opportunity to get a full
week of reps getting ready for Atlanta game. That's what you have
to look at.
even with Aaron today about trying to maybe get him ready also, to
get him a chance to come back (the question) is how do you balance
that out? Because at the end of the day, we have to make sure our
quarterback is ready to play."
Packers officially announced the signing of running back Kahlil
Bell, who worked out for the team on Monday. To clear a spot for
him on the roster, the team released second-year safety Jerron
McMillian, a fourth-round pick out of Maine last year. McMillian
went into training camp competing with M.D. Jennings for the
starting safety job opposite veteran Morgan Burnett. He made two
crucial errors at the end of the team's Oct. 13 victory over
Baltimore and has been playing almost exclusively on special teams
ever since. "His individual performance, it just wasn't quite
what it needed to be this year," McCarthy said. "You
never want to give up on a young guy." . The Packers have
four safeties left on their roster: Burnett, Jennings, Chris Banjo
and Sean Richardson, who was activated from the physically unable
to perform list last month. . McCarthy sounded encouraged about
center Evan Dietrich-Smith, who left Thursday's game with a knee
injury. Dietrich-Smith also injured his knee Nov. 10 against the
Eagles. "He feels that the time off really helped him. I'm
hopeful that he'll practice tomorrow," McCarthy said.