GREEN BAY, Wis. — Packers veteran defensive back Charles Woodson has been ruled out for Sunday’s regular-season finale in Minnesota and will miss his ninth consecutive game.
Woodson broke his collarbone on Oct. 21 and coach Mike McCarthy expected the injury to keep the eight-time Pro Bowl selection out for six weeks. But, 10 weeks later, Woodson has still not been cleared by Green Bay’s medical staff.
“Clearly based on the doctor’s recommendation,” McCarthy said Wednesday of his decision to already list Woodson as out on the injury report. “We had all kind of targeted the Minnesota game … was hopeful this was going to be the game. Charles, I think it’s going to be the fourth week he’s been going through practice.
“I know that he’s disappointed. This is a game that he really would like to play in. But this is clearly based on Dr. (Pat) McKenzie’s recommendation.”
Woodson, in his seventh season with the Packers, had only missed two games due to injury prior to this season since signing with Green Bay in 2006. With 15 years of NFL experience, Woodson isn’t worried about missing such a long period of time and then playing in the playoffs, where the Packers will either be the NFC’s No. 2 or No. 3 seed.
“Whenever the time comes, I know how to play football,” Woodson said last week. “That’s one thing you don’t forget. Just because you have time off, it doesn’t mean you forget how to play the game. I know how to play the game. I know the defense, and so when that time comes, I’ll be ready.”
McCarthy was given some good news on his team’s injury report, with wide receiver Jordy Nelson (hamstring) able to practice in full after missing the past three games.
“Jordy Nelson looked good today,” McCarthy said. “We ran a number of routes, routes on air, group-route emphasis as far as normal (down and distance), third down and no huddle. So I thought he looked good. Curious to see how he feels in the morning.”
Nelson was the Packers’ leading receiver last season, but hamstring injuries this year have limited him to 46 catches for 658 yards. Nelson ranks third on the team in receiving yards, behind Randall Cobb (954 yards, 80 catches) and James Jones (722 yards, 58 catches).
“I don’t think anybody just goes back seamlessly,” McCarthy said. “That’s why there’s always a difference between the real game and the practice environment. So it’s always an adjustment to come back in and I think it’s important for us to be smart with Jordy and I look for him to make the transition as smooth as possible.”
Cobb, who left Sunday’s game with an ankle and knee injury, was able to practice Wednesday on a limited basis.
“The plan for Randall is he’ll be limited today. He’ll be limited again tomorrow and then he’s going to go through a test on Friday,” McCarthy said. “How he feels Saturday will determine his availability.”