Aaron Rodgers gets first work in pads with Packers' No. 1 offense
GREEN BAY - The closest quarterback Aaron Rodgers will get to a live pass rush this week occurred during Thursday's padded practice.
Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy used up one of his three padded practices allowed in the final six weeks of the season, according to rules under the collective bargaining agreement, to help get Rodgers prepared for his return Sunday in Carolina.
"Team periods are competitive," McCarthy said before practice. "We have a pass under pressure segment that we do without pads; that’s Wednesday. It's not live, but it’s as close as you can probably get to it."
Rodgers practiced in pads last week when he was working on the scout team, so he was able to get reacquainted with the speed of the rush, move around in the pocket and do some scrambling.
On Thursday, he was doing it against a scout team that was simulating the Carolina Panthers defense. Padded practices feature more collisions and physical play, but tackling is not allowed.
McCarthy said Rodgers looked "good" on Wednesday.
"Once again, he’s been practicing, so he looks like himself," McCarthy said. "I thought he had a good day."
The Packers practiced inside the Don Hutson Center on Wednesday and Thursday. The 5 inches of snow on the practice fields could have been cleared, but since the Packers are playing at a warm-weather site, he decided to stay inside.
Cornerback Davon House (shoulder / back) and linebacker Jake Ryan (knee) both missed practice for a second straight day.
Tackle Jason Spriggs (hip) was added to the injury report as a limited participant.
Safety Josh Jones returned after missing a day for personal reasons.