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Aaron Rodgers injury: Packers QB practices in pads; Matt Flynn takes starter's reps

Rodgers was a limited participant in practice on Thursday, but it remains likely that Flynn will be under center against the Falcons.

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time since fracturing his collarbone on Nov. 4, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers practiced in pads on Thursday, according to ESPN's Rob Demovsky.

Before Packers fans get too excited, this was an expected move and doesn't change the fact that Rodgers is still a long shot to play Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons. Head coach Mike McCarthy told the media on Wednesday that his Pro Bowl quarterback was returning to practice, but noted he has not yet been cleared by medical staff to play.

"Aaron wants to play," McCarthy said. "It's a medical situation, he has a clear understanding of where he is as far as the process of getting back on the field. He feels good, we'll see what he can do tomorrow."

As expected, Matt Flynn took the starting reps during practice Thursday and will likely start on Sunday. He earned the nod last week against the Lions, but struggled during the Packers' ugly 40-10 Thanksgiving Day defeat.

The good news for Packers fans is McCarthy said he has no plans of shutting Rodgers down, making it likely we could see him back on the field again at some point in 2013. Whether or not that will be this Sunday remains unknown.

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