NFL: Vikings defense preparing for all scenarios with Rodgers, Packers
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — For the Minnesota Vikings, it’s more about whether Aaron Rodgers will have his full bag of tricks while playing with a knee injury than if he’ll be playing at all.
The Vikings are thoroughly convinced the Green Bay Packers quarterback will be in uniform Sunday when they visit Lambeau Field.
“I don’t know if he’s mobile. I don’t know if he can run. We don’t know anything,” Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen said. “We’re just going to go in with a game plan, that he’s running and we’re going to go out there and execute our assignment.”
The game before the game between these NFC North rivals involved discerning the status of the Packers’ two-time NFL MVP. At midweek, Rodgers was held out of practice to focus on rehab with what the quarterback said was a sprained left knee.
Coach Mike McCarthy said he would be evaluated each day after Rodgers got hurt in the second quarter of last week’s win over the Chicago Bears . McCarthy said Rodgers playing “is no layup.”
One of Rodgers’ many strengths is his mobility, which allows him to extend plays outside the pocket. The knee injury limited Rodgers’ movement against Chicago. He still carved up the secondary operating in a shotgun or pistol formation, and without a huddle.
“I think as you saw the other night, just because I wasn’t escaping the pocket, I was still moving in the pocket — subtle movements on the throw to (receiver Davante Adams) up in the pocket, and subtle movements on the throw to (Randall Cobb) on the last touchdown of the game,” Rodgers said.
The quick-pace offense looked unstoppable. It doesn’t mean that’s all the Packers will do with a limited Rodgers.
“Doesn’t mean you have to get the ball out right away. We’re playing a great defense, but no, I don’t think it makes you go all quick game,” he said.
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer recognized the differences in Rodgers in that game. He also won’t underestimate him.
“But our biggest thing is that you have to prepare for every scenario,” Zimmer said. “If he looks like he’s moving pretty well, then we have to adjust to some other parts of the game plan.”