Aaron Rodgers opened up about some of the adversity he faced on the field during the 2018 season, revealing he played through the pain of a broken leg.
The Packers quarterback said he suffered a tibial plateau fracture and sprained his MCL during the team’s regular-season opener against the Bears. He also suffered a concussion in the last game of the season as Green Bay fell, 31-0, to the Lions.
Rodgers detailed the specifics of the injuries, and indicated that the Week 1 setback had an effect on the rest of the season.
“If you watch the hit back, just my two bones that come together on the outside just kind of made an indent fracture,” Rodgers explained, per the Wisconsin State Journal. “The good thing was it’s not super load-bearing every single time. But there’s definitely some movements and things you do naturally that affected it.”
Rodgers ended up wearing a knee brace until Week 9 against the Patriots, though he had hoped to take it off earlier. He faced another setback in Week 5’s 31-23 loss to the Lions on Oct. 7 that forced him to stay in it for a bit longer.
“The MCL was frustrating as well because it did start to get better and then Christian Jones tackled me on the sideline in Detroit early in the game (in Week 5) and it basically reset the whole thing,” Rodgers added. “After the first quarter of the first game, I really wasn’t 100 percent the entire year. That’s not an excuse for the way I played or didn’t play, but it limited my mobility for a good part of the season.”
As for the “scary” concussion, Rodgers said it was the first time he took himself out of a game because he couldn’t see the field.
“I couldn’t see. I lost vision,” he said. “Definitely peripheral. I got hit and I came to the sidelines and I was sitting on the bench and I went back out there and by that third series, the normal 180-(degree) plus peripheral (vision) shrunk — to like blinders.”
Despite the injuries, Rodgers managed to start all 16 of the Packers’ regular-season games. He threw for 4,442 yards and 25 touchdowns with only two interceptions but completed just 62.3 percent of his passes, his second-lowest completion percentage over the past decade, as the team went 6-9-1 and coach Mike McCarthy was fired.
Rodgers, 35, said during the team’s first official offseason workout earlier this week that he doesn’t believe either issue will carry over into the 2019 season.
“Especially as an older player, it’s great. I feel great. My legs feel good. My feet feel good,” Rodgers said. “It would be nice to be a little healthier from the start. It’s something you can’t avoid, but I’ve made some changes to my offseason training regimen and approach and the kind of team that I have around me, which I think is going to help.”