Aaron Rodgers returned to the Green Bay lineup for just one game, a 31-24 loss against the Carolina Panthers. Just two days later, the Packers placed Rodgers on season-ending injured reserve. Brett Hundley will return to the starting lineup for the final two games of the season, including Saturday nights home game against the Minnesota Vikings.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Rodgers was sore after taking a number of hits in Sunday’s game and felt it was the best decision.
“He’s not happy about it,” McCarthy said. “It’s a hard day for him. This is not the way, I don’t think, any player wants to see their season come to a conclusion, being on IR. We all understand and appreciate and respect his competitive spirit, but we felt as an organization this was in his best interest.
Several times during McCarthy’s press conference on Tuesday, he said, “We felt this was clearly in Aaron Rodgers’ best interest.”
Hundley went 3-4 as a replacement for Rodgers the first time around. Now he’ll get two more games to close out the season to continue to gain experience.
Hundley took over for Rodgers in the first matchup against the Vikings in Minnesota. Without any real game preparation, Hundley was picked off three times.
“Very important for Brett Hundley,” McCarthy said. “He’s excited. He gets another opportunity, these opportunities that you can’t get in preseason. To play against this high a caliber of opponent at this time of year, this will be his first cold game, under 10 degrees or 15 degrees or whatever it comes in, so this is a great experience for Brett.”
With Rodgers going to injured reserve, the Packers re-signed Joe Callahan after he was released last week. Callahan will back up Hundley for the rest of the season.