The Green Bay Packers have been closely monitoring left tackle David Bakhtiari’s health all season, but an unexpected injury prior to Week 13 could keep him sidelined for the foreseeable future.
Bakhtiari has been slowly getting back to form after a long recovery from a torn ACL he suffered at the end of the 2020 season. While he had missed time this year with his knee injury, the former All-Pro tackle had been finding his footing in recent weeks, playing at a high level.
Unfortunately, the Packers announced on Friday, December 2 that Bakhtiari had an appendectomy that would keep him out of that Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears. Bakhtiari responded via Twitter letting fans know he was ok.
“What a crazy day,” Bakhtiari tweeted. “Thought I may have strained my abdomen or something this morning so I brought it up to our team Doctor. Next thing I know, I’m having surgery. Did not expect this. Everything went well. Thank y’all!”
Matt LaFleur Provides Injury Update on Bakhtiari
Fortunately for the Packers, Bakhtiari’s absence didn’t keep them from getting the win, taking the Bears down 28-19 to move to first place in all-time regular season wins. However, fans were concerned about the long-term health of Bakhtiari given the nature of the surgery.
Following the win, Matt LaFleur spoke to reporters to provide an update on Bakhtiari on Monday, December 5. Unfortunately for Packers fans, LaFleur’s comments weren’t exactly what they wanted to hear.
“From what I’ve heard it could be a while,” LaFleur told reporters when asked about Bakhtiari’s recovery.
It’s been a tough season for Bakthiari, who was finally healthy enough to come back onto the field, but is now suffering yet another setback. That being said, Bakhtiari was able to play at a high level when on the field. According to Pro Football Focus, Bakhtiari posted an 82.1 out of 100 overall grade, the seventh-best grade of qualified tackles in the NFL.
With just four games remaining, there’s a real chance that Bakhtiari could miss the remainder of the season. However, once healthy, Bakhtiari should be back to being one of the best left tackles in the league in 2023.
Bakhtiari Isn’t Alone with His Injury
Bakhtiari isn’t the only player in the NFL who has had to have an emergency appendectomy this season. Superstar quarterback Joe Burrow for the Cincinnati Bengals had to deal with one as well.
During training camp, the Bengals quarterback revealed that he had ruptured his appendix in late July. The former first overall pick ended up missing a large portion of training camp while being slowly eased back into practicing. Fortunately for the Bengals, the timing of Burrow’s injury allowed him to be ready for the season opener in Week 1.
Burrow may not have missed any regular season games, but that won’t be the case for Bakhtiari. It took Burrow roughly three weeks before he was able to start practicing again after his surgery, and even with the bye week, Bakhtiari should be expected to miss some time.
It will likely be rookie Zach Tom playing left tackle again in Week 15, going up against the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football.