Rodgers limited in practice, vows to play

GREEN BAY, Wis. — It had been nearly two years since Aaron Rodgers was listed on the Packers’ injury report, but on Wednesday, the reigning NFL MVP could only go through a limited workout.

Rodgers injured his calf early in the third quarter of Sunday’s win against the Houston Texans, but he continued to play. Three days later, Rodgers is still feeling the effects of the injury.

“It’s been a little tight,” Rodgers said at his locker. “Nothing’s going to keep me out.”

Rodgers believes the injury occurred on a scramble play that he ran into the end zone for a touchdown. Well, at least he thought it was a touchdown. A flag was thrown for holding on left tackle Marshall Newhouse behind the line of scrimmage, but Rodgers never saw it.

Rodgers, who rarely celebrates excessively, spiked the ball and did his “belt” celebration (perhaps now best known as the “discount double check”). When the touchdown was called back and Texans fans began to give him grief for his antics, Rodgers seemed a bit embarrassed.

“I hurt my calf and my pride,” Rodgers said.

The last time Rodgers had to miss any part of a regular-season practice was Dec. 17, 2010. That was the Friday before he sat out a game in New England due to a concussion he had suffered a week earlier in Detroit.

“Getting older,” Rodgers said with a smile. “(We’re) taking it smart.”

Packers coach Mike McCarthy downplayed the significance of Rodgers’ injury.

“It’s not a major concern,” McCarthy said. “We felt it was best to hold Aaron Rodgers from practice today. We’ll see how he is in the morning.”

Rodgers had plenty of company on the sideline during Green Bay’s practice. Starting outside linebacker Nick Perry (knee) and starting cornerback Sam Shields (shin/ankle) were both unable to participate after suffering injuries in Sunday’s game. Wide receiver Greg Jennings (groin) and nose tackle B.J. Raji (ankle), both of whom did not play in Houston, also missed practice.

McCarthy was not optimistic about Perry or Shields being ready to play this weekend in St. Louis against the Rams.

“I know we’re waiting on a brace for Nick today, so we’ll see where he is tomorrow,” McCarthy said. “I think both those guys will be stretched to make it this week.”

Jennings has already missed three games this season, including the past two, and could be out again this week.

“Greg had some treatment today, so we’ll wait to see how he responds,” McCarthy said. “The plan all along was to wait until Thursday and Friday, but I had a chance to visit with him and Dr. (Pat) McKenzie about his situation today. Hopefully, we’ll know something by Friday.”

Green Bay will be without inside linebacker D.J. Smith (knee) and running back Brandon Saine (knee) the rest of the season after each player suffered a knee injury against the Texans.

Running back Alex Green, who ran for 65 yards in 22 carries in Houston, practiced only on a limited basis Wednesday due to a shoulder injury. Tight ends Jermichael Finley (shoulder) and D.J. Williams (hamstring) were also limited in practice.

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