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GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers plan to play quarterback Aaron Rodgers whenever he is cleared, but that has not happened yet.
Coach Mike McCarthy said Tuesday that team doctors have not given Rodgers the OK to return for game action, but they have not ruled him out yet for Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons, which is five weeks after Rodgers broke his collarbone against the Chicago Bears on Nov. 4.
|Aaron Rodgers has not played since injuring his collarbone against Chicago on Nov. 4.|
"At this point, it's really about the risk of going back out there," Rodgers said on his weekly radio show. "I can't say this morning was the greatest news because I was hoping for full clearance to get back out there and we didn't get that. It's Tuesday so we have a good amount of time before the game."
Rodgers was scheduled to undergo tests on Tuesday. Although McCarthy wouldn't reveal the exact details of what those tests showed, he made it clear that Rodgers hasn't cleared all of the hurdles yet. However, Rodgers will practice on Wednesday in a limited fashion, McCarthy said. Rodgers returned to practice last Tuesday and was a limited participant in two non-pads practices last week.
"Well, Aaron wants to play, there's no question about it," McCarthy said Tuesday. "But it's a medical situation. He has a clear understanding where he is as far as the process of getting back on the field. He feels good, and we're going to see what he can do tomorrow."
If Rodgers can't play, Matt Flynn is expected to make his second straight start. McCarthy said Flynn would take the starter's snaps in practice on Wednesday.
Flynn struggled in last Thursday's 40-10 loss at the Detroit Lions. He completed just 10-of-20 passes for 139 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. He was sacked seven times.
Flynn relieved Scott Tolzien in the previous game, a 26-26 tie against the Minnesota Vikings on Nov. 24. That was the Packers' only non-loss since Rodgers went down. They have gone 0-4-1 in their last five games to fall to 5-6-1.
McCarthy denied reports that the Packers have considered shutting down Rodgers for the rest of the season if they are out of serious playoff contention.
"There has been no internal conversation about shutting Aaron Rodgers down," McCarthy said. "Aaron wants to play. When he's healthy, he'll be given the opportunity to play."
Rodgers also said his goal is to return this season even if the Packers fall out of contention.
"I desperately want to be back on the field, and that's been my stance from the beginning," Rodgers said. "If I'm healthy, I want to be on the field. Would hate to be in a situation where we're out of it, but this is my team. I'm the leader of this team, and I want to be out there."