ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported on Monday that the “initial belief” is that Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Rashan Gary tore his ACL on the turf at Ford Field in Week 9. Fowler noted that Gary is still undergoing an MRI, but that this would be an injury that is expected to end his season.
For reference, running back Kylin Hill tore his ACL in late October of 2021 and just was activated from the physically unable to perform list leading up to the Lions game, meaning that if Gary did tear his ACL that it could impact his status in 2023 as well. Gary was one of four players who left Sunday’s game in walking boots or crutches, per the local beat.
Gary, arguably the Packers’ best defender in 2022, was on pace for a career year after recording six sacks and seven tackles for loss through nine games. If this is the end of his year, he will enter a contract season in 2023 on a $10.9 million fifth-year option looking for his first double-digit sack campaign since being drafted 12th overall in 2019.
Depth at outside linebacker has been a question mark since Za’Darius Smith was released by the team in the offseason. The team’s third outside linebacker behind Gary and Preston Smith has recently been rookie Kingsley “JJ” Enagbare, who played 26 snaps in Sunday’s loss. The team also rosters Jonathan Garvin, who played 20 snaps after being replaced by then practice squadders La’Darius Hamilton and Kobe Jones in Week 7 and Week 8. Jones has since been released from the practice squad while Hamilton remains. Tipa Galeai, who has not played a defensive snap and only played special teams this year, also is listed at outside linebacker and is currently on the injured reserve. Among Enagbare, Garvin and Hamilton, only Garvin has made a single start in the NFL: Week 11 against the Minnesota Vikings in 2021.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport has also reported that running back Aaron Jones’ x-rays on his ankle have come back inconclusive. Jones is one of the four players who was wearing protective gear in the locker room yesterday after the game. Stay tuned as this almost certainly won’t be the last injury news you’ll hear out of Green Bay today.
Rapoport has confirmed that Gary has torn his ACL. The Packers should be placing him on the injured reserve in the upcoming days, which will end his 2022 season.