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Rodgers: Toe ‘Should Be 100 Percent’ for Playoffs

Even with limited practice time in recent weeks, Aaron Rodgers is on one of the great hot streaks in NFL history.

GREEN BAY, Wis. – Aaron Rodgers is in the process of giving his broke toe the boot.

After practicing only three times during a span of six weeks due to a broken toe, the Green Bay Packers’ quarterback practiced twice last week before the Detroit game. Having gotten through his one half of action in that game without a hitch, Rodgers practiced again on Wednesday as the Packers kicked off their bye week practice week.

“I’m feeling good, practiced today, close to 100 percent, but think I should be 100 percent by next week,” Rodgers said.

After missing the Kansas City game with COVID, Rodgers returned to face Seattle with a broken toe. To get through those early weeks, which included some setbacks along the way, Rodgers endured some “very painful” shots to numb the toe. He said he hasn’t needed a shot “in a number of weeks now.”

Rodgers enters the playoffs on one of his legendary rolls. He led the NFL in passer rating, touchdown percentage and interception percentage for the second consecutive year, a feat accomplished only three other times in the Super Bowl era. He threw at least two touchdown passes with zero interceptions in seven consecutive games, the second-longest streak in NFL history.

Rodgers threw 20 touchdowns vs. zero interceptions over that span. Among the 26 quarterbacks to go seven consecutive games without an interception (minimum 18 attempts in each game), Rodgers’ touchdown total trails only Tom Brady’s 24 during his record 10-game streak of zero-interception games in 2010.

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When Rodgers proclaimed the Packers could run the table in 2016, he threw 18 touchdown passes vs. zero interceptions in those final seven games.

This week will be about finding that right combination of staying sharp and getting rested. Coach Matt LaFleur will conduct practices on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this week. That’s the same as any other week. But with no opponent to prepare for this week, LaFleur moved up practice time about an hour to get the players out of the building earlier.

“That’s pretty frickin’ sweet,” Rodgers said of being able to go home after his Zoom interview was complete shortly after noon.

What sort of glamorous stuff does a potential four-time NFL MVP do with all that time off?

“I still have – I’m sure many people, hopefully it’s not just me – I’ve still got a semi-messy house post-Christmas and New Year’s, and it’s the end of the season, so you don’t have time for that,” he said. “So, I’m going to clean my house, I’m going to rest, I’m going to read some books, and I’m going to relax. That’s what I’m getting out of this week.”

Rodgers is getting healthy, and so is the majority of the roster. On Wednesday, outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith was on the field for the first time in about four months. Cornerback Jaire Alexander (shoulder), running back Aaron Jones (knee), linebacker De’Vondre Campbell (elbow), receiver Randall Cobb (core) and right tackle Billy Turner (knee), all of whom did not play on Sunday at Detroit, practiced, too.

“We’ve just got to put it all together,” Rodgers said of the return of so many key players. “Health-wise, man, this is amazing. To be out at practice and see 55 (Smith) running around and see 18 (Cobb) running around and 23 (Alexander) out there, 77 (Turner), you know, like, whew. Feels pretty good having these guys back. The excitement level definitely goes up and the energy is right where it needs to be. We’re going to enjoy this week, we’re going to rest, we’re going to fine-tune a couple things, and watch this weekend, figure out who we play and then get ready for the divisional round.”