With the Christmas season nearing and the NFL regular season entering its final month, teams are preparing to make their run at and into the playoffs.
For the Green Bay Packers, the playoffs almost seem like a certainty at this point. At 8-4, the Packers are currently sitting atop the NFC North and in the third seed in the NFC. While no team should overlook the accomplishment of making the playoffs, the Packers have their sights set on bigger goals.
Over the next couple of weeks, the Packers are going to begin to receive some wonderful gifts back onto the team for the playoff run. These players will make great early Christmas presents for a team that has been riddled with injuries all season long.
According to Coach Mccarthy, Charles Woodson is very close to being ready to come back from his broken collarbone. McCarthy stated that Woodson should be ready to go next week or possibly even this week if he is able to pass all of his tests. Woodson will have been out exactly six weeks this week, which was the original timeline for his injury. Woodson has not played since Week 7 against St. Louis.
The Packers defense has sorely missed Woodson's play-making skills. The Packers have only two defensive touchdowns this season and have had five games where they have not recorded an interception.
The Packers defense will receive another gift in the next couple of weeks with the return of Clay Matthews. Matthews has missed the last three games with a hamstring injury. Matthews still leads the Packers defense in sacks with nine even with the time missed. Defensive coordinator Dom Capers said that Matthews is progressing well and should be back on the field soon.
The return of cornerback Sam Shields and defensive end C.J. Wilson will also be huge boosts to the Packers on the defensive side of the ball. Both players were starting for the Packers defense before their respective injuries and will make the defense much more formidable for the playoff run.
With the return of these four players on the defensive side of the ball and getting wide receivers Jordy Nelson and Donald Driver back from their injuries, we could see the Packers playing at full strength for the first time this season just in time for Christmas.
That is a gift the Green Bay Packers are sure to enjoy.