Aaron Rodgers absolutely will return to action on Sunday against the Panthers. The Packers moved their starting quarterback onto their 53-man roster on Saturday, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets.
To make room, the Packers slashed their quarterback contingent back to two by cutting Joe Callahan. A second-year passer, Callahan resided on Green Bay’s taxi squad before Rodgers’ injury made him the primary backup to Brett Hundley.
Rodgers spent the eight weeks on IR, the NFL-mandated minimum, and earlier this week announced he was medically cleared. The Packers probably aren’t in position to make this move without their overtime victories against the Buccaneers and Browns. The Panthers are likely to see a different version of the Packers, a team picked by some to advance to Super Bowl LII before the season.
Green Bay sits one game behind the No. 6 wild-card spot in a crowded NFC race. And winning out won’t be easy. Although, it would have been next to impossible without Rodgers’ return. The Packers follow their trip to Charlotte with a home game against the Vikings and a trip to Detroit.
The Packers cutting Callahan indicates a degree of confidence in Rodgers’ health. Callahan will have to pass through waivers to make it back to Green Bay’s practice squad, if that is the move the franchise is trying to make. The Division III product has yet to take an NFL snap.
Rodgers was leading the NFL with his 13 touchdown passes at the time he went down early in Week 6. The two-time MVP led the Packers from 4-6 to the NFC championship game last season. He’ll have a chance to potentially do that again, only this year the team will not be gunning for an NFC North title and instead will need wild-card help to reach the postseason.
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