GREEN BAY – Greg Jennings thinks he might be ready to roll. It’s up to the Green Bay Packers medical staff now to agree with the two-time Pro Bowl wide receiver and allow him back in game action for the first time in nearly two months.
Jennings, who hasn’t played since the team’s Sept. 30 victory over New Orleans and underwent surgery to repair an abdominal muscle tear (a core muscle injury, in his doctor’s parlance) on Nov. 1, took part in several periods of practice on Wednesday and isn’t ruling himself out of Sunday night’s game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
“Me personally, I don't feel I'm a longshot. Playing it safe, I think (the medical staff) could say ‘longshot,’” Jennings said after practice, for which he was listed as a limited participant. “I feel great, the body feels great. This is my first day going out there and actually getting on the ground, running some routes, catching some balls, getting my wind underneath me. Just seeing how it feels again to be part of the group, part of the guys. Today was a big step for me. Whether or not I'll play this week, that's still yet to be determined.”
Jennings, who has missed the Packers’ past six games and seven of their last nine games since initially injuring himself in the Sept. 9 opener against San Francisco, said he feels the best he’s felt since training camp opened in late July. Jennings suffered a concussion during the Family Night Scrimmage, which kept him out for two weeks and set the tone for this difficult season.
“As far as health, I want to see how I feel tomorrow and how I respond to what took place today,” Jennings said. “It felt great. I felt no pain whatsoever. It's been a long time coming since I could say that.
“I'm just trying to get out there as soon as possible. That's my prognosis. I don't really have a timetable, I'm just trying to get out there as soon as possible. My mental state is great. My physical state is getting better by the day. So I'm excited.”
Jennings said he ran routes in the various periods he was part of in practice, then went inside the Don Hutson Center to do additional conditioning work since he’s been out for so long.
“There were some routes I was able to push it. Pretty much pushed myself to see how much I can take,” Jennings said. “As far as speed, I got up to full speed on a few routes. Felt really great. My wind is horrible right now so I'm trying to get my wind under wraps. But other than that, I felt great.”
Nevertheless, Packers coach Mike McCarthy did not sound overly optimistic about Jennings’ chances of playing on Sunday night.
“We’ll see where he is tomorrow,” McCarthy said. “It’ll be a stretch for him to be ready, but it’s something I know he would like to push to do. So we’ll just see. We’ll let the week work out, see how much he does day to day.”
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