UPDATE: Sunday, November 4 at 1:26 p.m. ET
Troubling news for Packers fans and fantasy owners as Jordy Nelson limped off the field in the first quarter of today's game with what appears to be an ankle injury, according to CBS' Will Brinson.
Jordy Nelson limps off the field after Aaron Rodgers skips one into him near the red zone. Argh.— Will Brinson (@willbrinson) November 4, 2012
ESPN's Josina Anderson reports that Nelson is questionable to return due to the ankle injury.
PBA: Jordy Nelson has an ankle injury. Questionable.— Josina Anderson (@JosinaAnderson) November 4, 2012
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UPDATE: Sunday, Nov. 4 at 11:40 a.m. ET by Matt Fitzgerald
The Green Bay Packers' official Twitter confirmed what Duke Bobber posted on the team's official blog concerning Nelson's status for Sunday's home game against Arizona:
This is obviously great news for Packers fans, particularly because Nelson has emerged as the favorite target of QB Aaron Rodgers over the past year or so. Whether the hamstring really limits him remains to be seen, but the fact that he is in the starting lineup is encouraging.
---End of Update---
UPDATE: Friday, Nov. 2 at 1:50 p.m. ET by Tim Daniels
Nelson will be a game-time decision for Sunday's clash with the Cardinals, according to Mike Vandermause of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Head coach Mike McCarthy made the announcement today.
McCarthy: Jordy Nelson will be game time decision.— Mike Vandermause (@MikeVandermause) November 2, 2012
It's good news for the Packers that Nelson might be able to suit up. Progress has clearly been made since the last update on his status from Wednesday. Fantasy owners are also in good shape because Green Bay plays at 1 p.m. ET, so it won't be an issue.
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UPDATE: Wednesday, Oct. 31 at 3:35 p.m. ET by Tim Daniels
Mike Vandermause of the Green Bay Press-Gazette reports Nelson is scheduled to undergo rehab treatment on Thursday and will then get evaluated on Friday to determine his potential playing status for Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals.
MM: Jordy Nelson will go through rehab process tomorrow, see how he is on Friday.— Mike Vandermause (@MikeVandermause) October 31, 2012
The Packers (and fantasy owners) are eager to see Nelson back on the field after he missed last week's game, but the team won't take any chances with its star receiver. He'll likely need to show he's full strength to play in Week 9.
---End of update---
UPDATE: October 28 at 11:43 a.m. ET by Patrick Clarke
Packers WR Jordy Nelson officially inactive. Jags QB Blaine Gabbert officially active.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 28, 2012
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UPDATE: October 28 at 10:09 a.m. ET
Rough news for Packers fans and fantasy owners as Jody Nelson is unlikely to play today against the Jaguars, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Packers WR Jordy Nelson plans to test hamstring in pregame warmups before making final decision, but he is unlikely to play today vs. Jags.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 28, 2012
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Update: Oct. 26, 5:30 p.m. by Darin Pike
Nelson has been listed as questionable for Sunday's game.
Jordy Nelson (questionable) will test hammy on Sunday before making a decision on availability. nfl.com/news/story/0ap…— NFL: AroundTheLeague (@NFL_ATL) October 26, 2012
Fans will still likely feel good about their chances against a depleted Jacksonville Jaguars offense, as they are without Maurice Jones Drew. But fantasy owners will have a difficult decision to make as Nelson's status won't likely be known until shortly before kickoff.
---End of Update---
After missing practice on Thursday with a hamstring issue, Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel broke some more distressing news over Twitter:
WR Jordy Nelson (hamstring) will not practice Friday. May test on Saturday or Sunday.— tom silverstein (@TomSilverstein) October 25, 2012
Silverstein reported Nelson's initial injury from Wednesday's practice as well.
The Packers are already without typical No. 1 receiver Greg Jennings, and Nelson has been the favorite target of QB Aaron Rodgers.
The play of Nelson has helped make up for the absence of Jennings, but missing both of them might be too much to overcome despite how well Rodgers has played recently.
Who's the backup?
While he has seen a rather diminished role in 2012, Donald Driver is listed as the backup to Nelson on the depth chart. The Packers' all-time leading receiver has caught just four passes for 45 yards and a touchdown this season.
Another Silverstein report found through ESPN's league-wide injury list indicated that Driver practiced on Thursday despite a neck ailment. Driver is now listed as probable for Sunday's home game against Jacksonville.
Driver is not the receiver he once was, but has been patiently waiting for his opportunity, according to James Carlton of CBSSports.com, "Week to week, if opportunity presents itself, I have to be ready to play. I'll be ready when that day comes."
It appears the opportunity may very well present itself In Week 8, and the mere seven targets Driver has notched all year may double against the Jags.
Devastation Scale: 9 out of 10
The only reservation from making this a "10" is because Rodgers has managed to continue being productive despite the absence of Jennings.
Nelson was obviously a big reason for that stability, though. He has been targeted 57 times—more than anyone on the team—catching 40 of those passes thrown his way for a 13.3-yard average and five touchdowns.
It's hard to say Driver is a downgrade, given his 14 years of experience and consistent production when his number is called.
That said, this hamstring injury to Nelson could really make life difficult in Green Bay. The defense is still statistically mediocre, and the running game remains lackluster. It will take more magnificence from Rodgers to keep the team afloat should Nelson and Jennings continue to miss significant time.
Timeline for Return
This situation has sprung up very suddenly. A nagging hamstring injury for a skills player can be devastating to his production for the rest of the season should he come back too early.
Nelson must make sure he can be at full-speed and put himself to the test before thinking of squaring off against the Jaguars. Given the questionable label currently attached to Nelson, he will probably be a game-time decision for this week at least.
If he can't go on Sunday, it will be even more crucial to see how the situation develops and whether this injury will hang on for an extended period.
Stay tuned for more as the extent of Nelson's injury becomes more specified.