The Green Bay Packers will be without one of their best players Sunday, as they look to extend their winning streak to eight games and earn a berth in the NFC Championship Game.
Packers head coach Mike McCarthy announced Friday the Packers have ruled out wide receiver Jordy Nelson with a rib injury for Sunday’s divisional-round game against the Dallas Cowboys. Nelson suffered multiple fractured ribs in last week’s wild-card game against the New York Giants after taking an awkward hit along the sideline.
Nelson missed the entire 2015 season with a knee injury sustained during the preseason, but he reclaimed his standing as one of the NFL’s best wideouts this season. The wideout finished sixth in the NFL in receiving yards, and his 14 receiving touchdowns led the league.
He was especially good down the stretch, hauling in 44 of 56 targets for 594 yards and five touchdowns during the Packers’ six-game winning streak that propelled them into the playoffs as the NFC North champion.
It’s potentially significant blow, but quarterback Aaron Rodgers didn’t miss a beat last week after Nelson went down against the Giants, arguably the NFL’s best defense. After a slow start, Rodgers completed 25 of 40 passes for 362 yards and four touchdowns, with most of that production actually coming after Nelson left the game in the second quarter.
The Packers also got a big boost last week from the return of Randall Cobb, who caught five passes for 116 yards and three touchdowns while looking much closer to 100 percent than he had during the second half of the season. Davante Adams (eight catches, 125 yards, touchdown) also came up big.
McCarthy indicated the Packers are hopeful Nelson could return if the Packers beat the Cowboys on Sunday.
Thumbnail photo via Dan Powers/The Post-Crescent via USA TODAY Sports Images