Aaron Rodgers turned in another MVP-caliber performance on Sunday Night Football to help the Green Bay Packers dismantle the Chicago Bears, but it might have come at the cost of making his toe injury worse.
Despite throwing for 341 yards and four touchdowns in the 45-30 win over the Bears, Rodgers told reporters his fractured pinky toe “feels worse” and that he “definitely took a step back” in the game that will force him to re-evaluate his options in the week ahead.
“It feels worse,” Rodgers said in the postgame. “I don’t know what kind of setback that I had tonight, we’ll look at it tomorrow, but definitely took a step back tonight.”
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Rodgers Will Get Injury Clarity on Monday
Rodgers had emerged from the Packers’ bye week feeling better about his injured toe and looking like he could delay any potential surgery to fix the issue until after the end of the 2021 season. He even returned to practice for the first time since Week 8 in a limited capacity in Friday’s final session, making it seem like he would be able to continue playing through the pain.
With a setback, though, things could become more complicated. Rodgers would not rule out the possibility of revisiting surgery as an option in the coming week, but mostly because they would not be properly evaluating his toe until Monday. He also said it would be a “last resort” and has previously been insistent any procedure would not cause him to miss any time for the Packers.
“I can’t make that call right now, we’re going to look at it tomorrow,” Rodgers said. “That would be last resort for sure, but I’ve got to see what kind of setback it was tonight.”
The Packers would certainly prefer not to lose Rodgers for any period of time, and not just because he is the reigning MVP of the league. They are currently without backup quarterback and 2020 first-round pick Jordan Love, who tested positive for COVID-19 last week and has still not been activated again. He would seem to have a good chance of returning for Week 15 in Baltimore, but the alternative to Rodgers, for the time being, is third-stringer Kurt Benkert.
Rodgers’ MVP Case Continues to Improve
Rodgers has crept back into the MVP conversation ever since he returned from the reserve/COVID-19 list in Week 10. Over his last three performances, the 38-year-old quarterback has thrown for 1,033 yards and accounted for 11 touchdowns, including one he ran in against the Los Angeles Rams before the bye. He also hasn’t thrown an interception since his first game back from testing positive for COVID-19.
According to Odds Shark, Rodgers was getting the second-best odds (+450) to win his second straight MVP in 2021 behind only Tom Brady (+150) as the current frontrunner. Brady didn’t exactly hurt his chances in Week 14, either. He ran for a touchdown and threw for two more — including a 55-yard game-winner to Breshad Perriman — in Tampa Bay’s victory over Buffalo. In terms of picking a winner for the MVP, it could come down to which quarterback dazzles the most down the stretch.
Then again, Rodgers has already joked that his midseason COVID-19 controversy means he will most likely not win another league MVP. At least he has three trophies at home already to comfort him if a fourth one doesn’t work out in 2021.