Aaron Rodgers had a tough night in New Orleans Sunday. After getting the Packers off to a solid start with an early touchdown toss to Randall Cobb, the Packers struggled on both offense and defense. The defensive struggles were no doubt due in part to the absence of starters Morgan Burnett and Sam Shields. The offense was hampered by Aaron Rodgers’ injury in the third quarter. The injury, though apparently minor, limited Rodgers’ ability to move, and the Saints keyed on that fact as they pressured him relentlessly for the rest of the game.
Rodgers and the Packers have several things going in their favor at the moment. The first is that this week is their “bye” week, so Rodgers will get extra time to rest his sore hamstring. The second is that, based on comments by coach Mike McCarthy that were reported by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Rodgers’ injury does not appear to be too serious. That much was obvious by the fact that McCarthy left Rodgers in to finish the game on Sunday night, although the Journal Sentinel says McCarthy stopped calling plays that would have required Rodgers to roll out.
Rodgers was clearly not the same quarterback after the injury. Before he hurt his hamstring, Rodgers completed 14 of 19 passes for 298 yards and a touchdown. After the injury, he completed 14 of 20 passes for 120 yards, with no touchdowns and two interceptions. Rodgers had only thrown one interception over the entire season before Sunday night.
ESPN Wisconsin says that Rodgers backs up what McCarthy told the media.
“I’m not going to miss any time. If I felt it, then I had to back off a little bit. We had to do a little more in the shotgun but it wasn’t a big deal, ultimately.”
It is great news for Packers fans, as well as fantasy football players, that Aaron Rodgers is likely to be back in action when the Packers take on the Bears at Lambeau Field. But Sunday night’s loss was disappointing on several levels. First, it allowed the Lions, who won in London earlier in the day, to solidify their lead in the NFC North. Second, the loss means that the Packers have not beaten the Saints in New Orleans since 1995. They have played three games in the Super Dome over that time span. Third, as reported in the Inquisitr, the Packers’ loss and Aaron Rodgers’ injury were a sad end to a week that started with Rodgers beating Carolina, followed by a Pearl Jam concert, and being picked as NFL offensive Player of the Week.
[Photo via Stacy Revere/SBNation]