05-17-2018, 08:22 AM
GREEN BAY, Wis. Derek Newton Jersey . -- Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy isnt sure if quarterback Aaron Rodgers will start the teams winner-take-all NFC North matchup with the Chicago Bears on Sunday at Soldier Field. McCarthy did say Monday that the team wants to make a decision on Rodgers availability "sooner than later." Rodgers, who has not played since fracturing his left collarbone against the Bears at Lambeau Field on Nov. 4, has missed the past seven games. Including the loss to the Bears when Rodgers was injured at the end of the Packers opening series, the Packers have gone 2-5-1 with three different starters at quarterback. Throughout the process, the team has emphasized that Rodgers has not been "medically cleared" by team physician Dr. Pat McKenzie. McCarthy also emphasized last week that the decision not to start Rodgers in Sundays 38-31 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers was an "organizational decision," suggesting that general manager Ted Thompson, McCarthy and McKenzie made the call. "(There is) lot of conversation going on with Aaron and obviously Dr. McKenzie and Ted Thompson and I. Were working through that," McCarthy said Monday of the teams plans for Rodgers. "I do not have anything to announce today. Hopefully we can get the question answered sooner than later. Were still working that." Asked directly if Rodgers has been medically cleared, McCarthys answer was different than previous answers to the same question. "Thats all part of the conversation. Were still gathering information today," McCarthy said. "Theres testing and things to get done, so were still working through that. I, personally, havent talked to Dr. McKenzie yet. He left for surgery. Were working through it." Last week, McCarthy had also said that Rodgers looked "ready to play" after observing him in practice last Wednesday and Thursday. While Rodgers had experienced pain in his shoulder after returning to practice in advance of the Dec. 8 game against Atlanta, he was essentially pain-free before the Dec. 15 game against Dallas and before Sundays game against the Steelers. "Clearly after seeing Aaron practice for two weeks, this is something Ted Thompson and I need to sit down and we need to assess all the information and to decide if its time for him to play," McCarthy said. "Aaron wants to play, has wanted to play for the last couple of weeks. He fully accepts, understands everything going on with his injury, so this is really a decision for Ted Thompson and I representing the organization. Thats how it works." Backup Matt Flynn had led Green Bay to back-to-back double-digit comebacks in victories over Atlanta and Dallas the previous two weeks to keep the Packers playoff hopes alive. And their loss to Pittsburgh ended up having no ill effect because of the Bears 54-11 blowout loss at Philadelphia later in the night. Now, the Packers (7-7-1) and Bears (8-7) will square off Sunday, with the winner earning the NFC North crown and a home playoff game in the NFC wild-card round. "We know whats at stake," Flynn said. Rodgers status isnt the only issue for the Packers on the injury front. Four-time Pro Bowl outside linebacker Clay Matthews, who missed four games earlier this season after breaking his right thumb against Detroit on Oct. 6, broke the thumb again Sunday and may be lost for the season. "The training staff didnt feel very good about the injury, so were still working through the process," McCarthy said. And running back Eddie Lacy, who has been hobbled by a sprained right ankle since suffering the initial injury Dec. 8, hurt the ankle again Sunday and could be out, too. "Eddie, hes sore, which he has been pretty much the whole season," McCarthy said. "Were not going to practice on the field until Thursday, so Ill probably have a better feel for where hes at." The Packers have 16 players on injured reserve, including wide receiver Randall Cobb, who has been designated for return but has yet to be medically cleared for game action. Defensive end Johnny Jolly was the latest starter to be placed on season-ending IR on Saturday with a neck injury. And yet, here they are, with a chance to win the division. "Its been a wild ride so far. And I like to think were just getting started," McCarthy said. "Thats what Im selling. Hopefully theyre buying it." Lamar Miller Jersey .com) - Robert Martin and Josh Hicks combined for more than 300 yards rushing and three touchdowns, as Rutgers rolled past North Carolina, 40-21, in the Quick Lane Bowl. Duane Brown Jersey . 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