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Rodgers officially a minicamp holdout, WRs return, Bakhtiari opens up about injury

4 other Packers missed work in COVID protocol
Davante Adams at Packers minicamp
Davante Adams at Packers minicamp(station)
Updated: Jun. 8, 2021 at 5:32 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Aaron Rodgers was not at practice for the 1st day of mandatory minicamp. That was not shocking news given his rift with Packers management.

Packers head coach Matt LaFleur refused to say if Rodgers absence was excused, calling it “team business.”

In fact, the head coach was rather mum about the entire situation. However, some of Rodgers’ teammates opened up on the topic.

“I care about Aaron Rodgers from a friend perspective,” said left tackle David Bakhtiari. “Whatever he wants to do in this situation, I will never hold any grudge against him. That is my friend. That is a friend I appreciate, has done a lot of for the Packers and has done a lot for me as an individual Now as a teammate, it would be idiotic not to say I don’t want the MVP back.”

“I’ve got no expectations, man,” said receiver Davante Adams. “Just being supportive of my guy. Let it all unfold how it does. Obviously, I’m praying that he comes back. We all want him back. I think everybody in this building has that same mindset but I can only control what I can. I can’t control any of what is going on with that situation. So I’m just kind of sitting here doing what I got to do.”

Although Rodgers didn’t take the field, his receivers who missed voluntary OTAs did.

Adams, Allen Lazard, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Equanimeous St. Brown, and Devin Funchess were all on the practice field for the first time this offseason.

However, four other players -- Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, Elgton Jenkins, and Dean Lowry – missed the workout sitting in the league’s COVID protocol. That doesn’t necessariy mean they had a positive test though.

With Rodgers a no-show, Jordan Love took a majority of the first team snaps at quarterback, and the Packers brought in another tryout QB for a grand total of 4 in the offseason workouts.

Today left tackle David Bakhtiari was actually speaking publicly for the first time since tearing his ACL in practice during the final week of the regular season last year.

When asked about a timeline for his return, Bakhtiari joked that he had no problem saying he will be ready for the start of training camp in 2022.

Kidding aside, Bakhtiari admitted it took him a while to come to terms with getting injured at such a critical juncture in a special season.

“I would say the first 36 hours were the worst,” Bakhtiari said. “And then how I looked at it was I have this long road to go down. I don’t want to go down it, but I have to. Might as well go down it with a positive attitude and attack it like I have with everything in my life. I decided to end my pouting session after 2 days and said, ‘This is where we start.’ Pretty much January 2nd is where I stopped feeling bad for myself and started just trying to attack the day. One little thing, I focused on that. Everything as little as trying to put a little weight on my leg, getting range of motion, being able to make one cycle on a bike. It was humbling.”

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