Aaron Rodgers was carted off the field in Sunday night’s game against the Chicago Bears after landing awkwardly on his knee, a potentially huge blow for a team that has traditionally struggled without their franchise quarterback.
Rodgers was hurt in the second quarter of Sunday’s game after being sacked, limping to the sidelines before being carted to the locker room. Replays showed that Rodgers’ knee appeared to bend at an awkward angle, raising fears that it could have been a ligament tear.
While there is no set prognosis for Aaron Rodgers’ injury, former NFL doctor David J. Chao tweeted that the Packers quarterback may be spared the worst of it. Chao noted that a “quick look doesn’t have me thinking anything major injury. Of course, quite a bit of pain but that has never stopped [Aaron Rodgers] before.”
Chao added that Rodgers may just be heading to the locker room for precautionary X-rays, and said the Packers quarterback could still return with a brace on his knee. He noted that Rodgers landed with his body weight outside of his leg, meaning a more serious injury like an ACL tear appeared unlikely.
DeShone Kizer came into the game in relief of Rodgers, leading the Packers on a drive into the red zone before Bears edge rusher Khalil Mack forced a fumble and recovered.
Aaron Rodgers goes down, limps off the field pic.twitter.com/ZrAoMnWOgs— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) September 10, 2018
While there is never a good time for the Packers to lose Aaron Rodgers to an injury, it hurts even more coming in Week 1 against a divisional opponent at a time when the NFC North looks like one of the most competitive divisions in the league. And it also comes just weeks after the Packers signed Rodgers to a $134 million contract extension, making him the NFL’s highest-paid player. Turning to Kizer, who struggled last season after being forced into the starting job for the Cleveland Browns, could also pose difficulties for a team that would have to face difficult defenses within the division.
Aaron Rodgers has struggled with injuries in the past, going down in Week 6 last season with a shoulder injury that required surgery. He did not return until Week 15, but was placed on injured reserve again after the Packers missed the playoffs. Rodgers also missed seven games in 2013 after suffering a broken collarbone.
The Green Bay Packers have not given an official update on the severity of Aaron Rodgers’ injury or whether he might be able to return.