Jermichael Finley’s road to recovery will continue Monday in Arizona when the Packers free-agent tight end undergoes a X-ray on his surgically repaired neck, according to USA TODAY’s Tom Pelissero.
Finley, 27, has been training in Scottsdale this offseason and is reportedly on track to be cleared from having neck fusion surgery November for a spinal contusion he suffered in an Oct. 20 game against Cleveland.
Finley’s scans will then be sent to Pittsburgh-based Dr. Joseph Maroon, who performed the surgery in November.
If his doctor clears him, it will also be up to team doctors to examine Finley’s fusion of the C-3 and C-4 vertebrae. Some have been hesitant to clear players from a fusion that high on the spinal column, but Packers coach Mike McCarthy remains optimistic team doctor Patrick McKenzie will.
McCarthy has also made it clear he’d like Finley back for 2014, but the Packers aren’t the only interested parties.
The Seattle Seahawks failed Finley on a physical last month, but there still seems to be interest there. Miami and the New York Jets have also been reported as possible landing spots.
The Seahawks would make sense. Their general manager, John Schneider, is a former Packers executive who played a role in drafting Finley in the third round of the 2008 NFL draft.
If Finley doesn’t return, the Packers have a gaping hole to fill in the middle of the field. They re-signed Andrew Quarless to a two-year deal and second-year pro Brandon Bostick is intriguing, but the offense lacks a proven veteran with Finley’s ability.
Finley had 25 catches for 300 yards and three touchdowns in six games last season. The Packers’ other four tight ends combined for 45 catches, 462 yards and three touchdowns for the season.