In the pre-practice presser on Thursday, Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur said he expected both receiver Christian Watson (hip) and cornerback/returner Keisean Nixon (groin) to return to practice today after being non-participants on Wednesday. That turned out not to be the case, as they both were officially called non-participants for back-to-back days on the team’s injury report.
Aaron Rodgers officially limited. pic.twitter.com/yJhYKSEB8O— Rob Demovsky (@RobDemovsky) December 29, 2022
The Packers have a must-win game against the Minnesota Vikings coming up on Sunday and their statuses are very much up in the air at this point. Both players left last week’s game against the Miami Dolphins with their injuries. Watson took over the X receiver role from Sammy Watkins, who was since waived and claimed by the Baltimore Ravens, at midseason. Around the same time, Nixon took over as the team’s nickel corner and full-time return man. Once Nixon left the Dolphins game with his injury, the team turned to their reserve safeties — with cornerback Eric Stokes already on the injured reserve — to play the slot.
The good news from Thursday is that quarterback Aaron Rodgers (thumb, knee) returned to practice. This was expected after Rodgers told the media on Wednesday that he would be suiting up for the rest of the week and would be playing against the Vikings.
Left tackle David Bakhtiari (knee, abdomen) has been a limited participant in back-to-back practices. Up until this week, Bakhtiari had missed every practice since he underwent an emergency appendectomy on the Friday before the Chicago Bears game in Week 13. Along with Bakhtiari and Rodgers, left guard Elgton Jenkins (knee), running back Aaron Jones (knee, ankle) and right tackle Yosh Nijman (shoulder) were also limited participants on Thursday.
There were no changes to the Vikings’ injury report today. Starting center Garrett Bradbury (back) and backup defensive lineman James Lynch (shoulder) remained non-participants while starting left guard Ezra Cleveland (shoulder) was limited in practice once again.