Packers cornerback Sam Shields will not be cleared to play for at least a few more weeks, as ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweets. Shields suffered a concussion during Green Bay’s Week 1 victory against Jacksonville, which came less than nine months after his previous concussion on December 13, 2015. That concussion forced Shields to miss the final three regular season games of 2015 plus the Packers’ NFC wild-card playoff win over Washington before he returned for the divisional playoff loss at Arizona.
Shields has now suffered four concussions in the past six seasons, and as they continue to pile up, one has to wonder about the longevity of his career. Just 28, Shields has established himself as one of the better cornerbacks in the league when healthy, and he signed a four-year, $39MM deal with Green Bay prior to the 2014 campaign. But as Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com wrote several days ago, Shields described last year’s concussion as particularly scary because he does not remember anything that happened.
Shields said of that concussion, “All I remember is going after the tackle and my head hitting the ground. And that was it. I blanked out. I try to keep my head from getting in there, but it’s kind of hard. It’s a physical sport.”
Packers head coach Mike McCarthy has not offered any details about Shields’ recovery or prognosis except to say that he going through the league’s concussion protocol and its attendant evaluations.
Shields has posted five interceptions in his career and earned a trip to the Pro Bowl in 2014.
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