Mike McCarthy was as surprised as anyone Alex Green wasn’t able to make it back for Sunday’s game against Tennessee.
However, the Green Bay Packers coach said on Monday he feels good about the prospects of the running back being back for this Sunday’s regular-season finale against Minnesota.
Along with starting left guard T.J. Lang, Green was diagnosed with a concussion following last week’s win over Chicago. Unlike Lang, Green wasn’t able to practice all week, but had only “one more hurdle” to climb in his testing when McCarthy spoke about his injury on Friday.
Ultimately, Green wasn’t able to pass the protocol on Saturday and was added to the team’s seven-player inactive list, which was fully occupied by players dealing with various ailments.
Without Green, the Packers fed the ball to veteran Ryan Grant, who rushed 20 times for 80 yards and two touchdowns in the 55-7 rout.
As the team gets ready for its showdown with the Vikings, who need a win to clinch a playoff berth, McCarthy was hopeful the Packers could get several players back as they enter the final stretch of the season.
Other than Green and defensive lineman Jerel Worthy (hamstring), McCarthy wasn’t definitive about which players nearing a return, but said both wide receiver Jordy Nelson (hamstring) and defensive back Charles Woodson (collarbone) are close.
“I’m hopeful a lot of those guys can get back, but we’ll see,” McCarthy said. “I know Jordy, talking with him, he feels like he’s very close. Charles, he’s waiting on information from the medical staff. He’s very close. Alex Green, I was surprised that he wasn’t available for Tennessee just based on the way that process, the result of the process, so he’ll definitely be available.”
Woodson missed his eighth consecutive game on Sunday after still not being cleared for contact from the broken collarbone he suffered against St. Louis Oct. 21.
McCarthy said he didn’t have enough information to make guesses on defensive lineman C.J. Wilson (knee) or running back James Starks (knee), but it was inferred this past week the team is eyeing a playoff return for Starks.
Tight end Tom Crabtree (hamstring) missed Sunday’s game after sustaining the injury against Chicago the week before.
Meanwhile, cornerback Davon House’s status remains uncertain after undergoing further tests after sustaining a left-shoulder injury against the Titans – the same side where he suffered a subluxation during the preseason-opener on Aug. 9 against San Diego that sidelined him for the first six games of the regular season.