Sportress of Blogitude

Mike McCarthy: ‘We’ll see’ if Aaron Rodgers returns to practice Saturday

Aaron Rodgers is officially eligible to return to practice Saturday and Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy hinted that it’s a possibility.

“We’ll see,” McCarthy said Monday, via ESPN. “I mean, he’s still going through — there’s a protocol, there’s targets we’re trying to hit each and every week. I think they’re working [on it], and it’s segmented. The A-No. 1 priority is to get him healthy. Practice is not something we’re really focused on right now.

“I’m more focused on game planning for the Buccaneers. There’s a plan laid out for Aaron, just like the other guys on IR. He’s knocking it out of the park, he’s going at it 120 miles an hour. We’ll see what the end of the week brings.”

Rodgers underwent surgery last month after suffering a broken right collarbone during a Week 6 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. The Packers placed him on injured reserve the next day, Oct. 20, meaning he’d be eligible to return to action in Week 15, a Dec. 16 game against the Carolina Panthers. However, players are eligible to practice six weeks after an injured reserve designation is made.

This latest sign of progress follows several encouraging developments over the past few weeks regarding Rodgers’ progress through rehab. McCarthy recently stated Rodgers is “making real good progress” one day before the veteran quarterback was spotted getting in some light work on the side during a Packers practice.

And then there was this sight ahead of Sunday night’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

“I think it [was] a great opportunity,” McCarthy said. “I mean, think about it: You’re on a rehab process and the ability to throw in an opponent’s stadium. Everything that they’re doing is calculated between the training room, the strength and conditioning room and Aaron. As you would imagine, he’s going at it 120 miles an hour, and so far so good.”