With the NFC North title on the line, Aaron Rodgers is returning to the Packers’ starting lineup.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy announced Thursday that Rodgers, the club’s star quarterback, is on track to start the season finale at Chicago after missing the previous seven games with a broken collarbone.
“We’re preparing for the Chicago Bears with Aaron Rodgers as our starting quarterback,” McCarthy said.
Rodgers practiced in full on Thursday, the club said.
“He’s throwing the ball very well going on three weeks. He’s been working his feet, working his conditioning, and getting ready for this moment. And that moment’s here,” McCarthy said Thursday.
McCarthy said the club has done its “due diligence” and that Rodgers “is ready.”
A victory by the Packers (7-7-1) will give the Packers their third consecutive division title. They currently trail Chicago (8-7) by a half-game.
Rodgers suffered the injury in the first quarter of Green Bay’s November 4 loss to Chicago. At the time, the 30-year-old Rodgers was playing at an exceptionally high level for Green Bay, which was then atop the NFC North. Even as the Packers dealt with a host of injuries to key pass catchers, Rodgers thrived, leading Green Bay to an unbeaten record in October.
Matt Flynn has been the Packers’ primary replacement for Rodgers, starting four games. He replaced Scott Tolzien, who started twice after Seneca Wallace was injured early in the Packers’ first game without Rodgers.
On the season, Rodgers has completed 168-of-251 passes for 2,218 yards with 15 TDs and four interceptions. He has compiled a 108.0 quarterback rating.