The toe injury that has bothered Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers throughout the latter part of the NFL season has all but healed according to him, and none too soon as the team enjoys a bye week prior to its playoff opener in the NFC Divisional Round.
Rodgers participated in practice on Wednesday, and said he’s no longer taking a pain-killing injection to help him play.
“I haven’t taken one in a number of weeks now, so that’s been the most encouraging thing,” Rodgers said Wednesday, via ESPN. “Got through last week without doing one. It was just a pretty standard shot in the toe, very painful, a numbing agent. That helped get me through the games. The whole goal was to be able to not have to do that. It’s been a few games without doing that. So I’m feeling good, practiced today, close to 100 percent. I think I should be 100 percent by next week.”
Rodgers fractured his left pinky toe in November while quarantined with COVID-19. He missed a start against the Kansas City Chiefs under COVID protocols, then got to rest the toe again a few weeks later when the Packers had a bye in Week 13.
Since then, notwithstanding his toe being stepped on during a Christmas Day win over the Cleveland Browns, Rodgers has been on the mend.
As for this week, coach Matt LaFleur scheduled two practice sessions for the bye week – Rodgers will presumably be a go again on Thursday – as the team waits to learn which team will visit Green Bay for the second round of the playoffs.
Rodgers enters the postseason on a hot streak, having thrown 20 touchdown passes without an interception since Week 11. By statistical measures, the toe injury certainly hasn’t affected his play.
But Rodgers said his goal this week is simple.
“Rest,” he said. “Rest. I mean, I’m about to go home, and it’s what, 12:22 [in the afternoon]? That’s pretty frickin’ sweet. So I’m going to enjoy this rest. I’m sure many people, hopefully it’s not just me, I’ve still got a semi-messy house post-Christmas and New Year’s, and it’s the end of the season, so you don’t have time for that. So I’m going to clean my house, I’m going to rest, I’m going to read some books, and I’m going to relax. That’s what I’m getting out of this week.”
Rodgers will most likely compete with Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady for the MVP award during the week of Super Bowl LVI, to which the Packers quarterback aspires to reach for the second time in his successful career.