A city and fan base holds their collective breath as a decision on the status of Aaron Rodgers and whether he will start for the Green Bay Packers Sunday at Lambeau Field vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers could be made today, according to Packers head coach Mike McCarthy.
Rodgers took a good chunk of first-team reps in practice last week, but Matt Flynn started for the Pack and after a rough first half led the Pack to five second half touchdowns on five possessions and deliver a comeback for the ages to defeat the Dallas Cowboys.
“We’re game-planning right now for Matt Flynn,” McCarthy said Monday. “That’s the way we started the conversation Saturday. We do some preliminary game-planning each week for the next opponent, so that’s the way we’re going about it as an offensive staff.”
The Packers have been cautious with Rodgers as he missed his sixth straight start since breaking his collarbone in the loss to the Chicago Bears on Nov. 4. Rodgers, always the competitor was angry, frustrated and disappointed he couldn’t be out there against the Cowboys with his teammates, but understood the decision by team Dr. Pat McKenzie.
“I trust him and care about him a lot as a friend and also as somebody who counsels me when I’m injured,” Rodgers said of McKenzie. “We’ve always been able to have honest conversations, and I respect his honesty and that he cares about the guys so much, because he does. And sometimes those guys need to save you from yourself.
Rodgers was saved from himself because of the cautious, smart and wise move to hold out the former league MVP and Flynn did what he was supposed to do and ran the offense and helped get the win and keep the Packers in playoff contention.
This is a medical decision, not a football one, so if McKenzie is satisfied with the healing of the bone, he’ll be out there. But if he’s not then they will roll the dice one more week that Flynn can keep the team afloat for a potentially huge Week 17 showdown with the playoffs on the line with the team that injured Rodgers in Week 9.
Bears vs. Packers in Solider Field with Rodgers on the field looking for a bit of revenge with a spot in the postseason on the line, it doesn’t get much better than that–unless he’s on the field this and next week that is.