By Ross Jones, FOXSports.com
For all the talk of the
' new-found dominant ground game, and despite owning perhaps the deepest and most talented receiving corps in the NFL, the No. 1 truth in Green Bay is a simple one: Without
, the Pack goes nowhere. That truth was put to the test on Monday night, and unfortunately for Green Bay, it looks as true as ever. The Packers ran for 199 yards (including 150 and a TD by
returned to the lineup for the first time since suffering an injury in Week 6, and Green Bay was facing
, in for injured Chicago QB
. But after Rodgers went out with a shoulder injury on his team's opening drive, the Packers were lost, and ultimately they just lost, 27-20. For the
, they were able to make do with their backup-turned-starting QB — and survive a surprise onside kick by the Packers following a third-quarter TD. They, too, have a strong running game with
closing out the game with key third-down conversions and running for 125 yards on 24 carries. And they wore down the Packers with an 18-play fourth-quarter drive that took almost nine minutes off the clock to move into a three-way tie atop the NFC North. But make no mistake, the postgame aftermath was all about finding out how long Rodgers is out. And until we know, Packer Nation holds its collective breath. OK, let’s get into what else we know:
How serious is Rodgers’ shoulder injury?
It’s a very fluid situation. While the long-term diagnosis likely won’t come until Tuesday, there is a growing concern that Rodgers could have sustained a fractured clavicle. "They want to run more tests," head coach
said in the postgame news conference. "They don't have an exact diagnosis is where we are. Depending on the severity and if the injury requires surgery, Rodgers would miss a significant amount of time, according
to former NFL head team physician David J. Chao.
One sign of optimism was Rodgers joined his teammates on the Packers’ sideline in sweats without a sling in the second half. He didn’t appear to be in clear pain, but it’s hard to speculate. The good news is if we were to use history as any indicator,
suffered an AC joint separation in the 2011 playoffs, which he was able to play through. While pain tolerance and a number of other factors could come into play, any injury to Rodgers would be devastating to the Packers. Rodgers’ injury already adds to a growing list of Packers' stars who have suffered injuries including
What will the Packers do at quarterback?