In the news:
RODGERS STILL NOT CLEARED TO PLAY FOR PACKERS
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers hasn’t been medically cleared to return from his left collarbone injury to play Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Seattle Times news services
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers hasn’t been medically cleared to return from his left collarbone injury to play Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Rodgers appears to be inching closer to a return. He hasn’t played since getting hurt on the first series of a 27-20 loss to Chicago on Nov. 4.
“Threw the ball extremely well. Looked sharp. He’s getting better,” coach Mike McCarthy said.
For now, he’s still officially “limited” in practice, taking some snaps with the first team while backup Matt Flynn prepares to start a game that Green Bay (7-6-1) needs desperately. A victory over the Steelers ensures a showdown for the division the following week with the Bears.
Flynn, a former Seahawk, has helped rally the Packers to two straight come-from-behind wins.
The Packers would love to reunite rookie running back Eddie Lacy and Rodgers in the same backfield. Green Bay has made a late charge in the NFC North race thanks in part to the 6-foot, 250-pound bowling ball of a running back.
Lacy earned NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors after rushing for 141 yards against Dallas. With 1,028 yards rushing and eight touchdowns, Lacy is the only rookie in franchise history to run for a least 1,000 yards and five scores.
WASHINGTON — The Federal Communications Commission moved to curb the sports blackouts on television that have frustrated fans over the years.
The proposal, which would still need a final vote by the commission, would overhaul 40-year-old rules that were written when watching games on television wasn’t as popular as going to stadiums.
The FCC said the revamp would mostly affect the NFL. If a team does not sell out stadium tickets by Thursday, the local broadcast of that game is blacked out. The rule was aimed at protecting ticket sales, but an increasingly vociferous alliance of fans, lawmakers and satellite and cable companies have lobbied the agency to overturn it.
• Wes Welker (concussion) has not been medically cleared to return to practice, and Denver Broncos coach John Fox said only that the receiver is day to day.
• Pittsburgh linebacker Terence Garvin was fined $25,000 for his hit on Cincinnati punter Kevin Huber on Sunday night. Huber suffered a broken jaw and a cracked vertebrae when Garvin decked him near midfield during Antonio Brown’s 67-yard punt return for a touchdown.
• The Chicago Bears remain optimistic seven-time Pro Bowl linebacker Lance Briggs will be ready to play at Philadelphia after he practiced on a limited basis.
• Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco will wear a brace on his left knee Sunday against New England after taking a shot to the knee last weekend.
• Bills rookie quarterback EJ Manuel was ruled out from playing against Miami because of a swollen left knee.
• Matt Schaub will start at quarterback for Houston against Denver, replacing an injured Case Keenum.
• Washington linebacker London Fletcher announced he will likely retire from the NFL after 16 seasons.
• Jacksonville Jaguars center Brad Meester is retiring after 14 seasons, walking away with franchise records for games played and started (207).
• New Orleans coach Sean Payton announced that veteran Shayne Graham was the new kicker, and that rookie Terron Armstead would get his first start at left tackle.
• Rams defensive end Eugene Sims said he’s been fined $7,875 for a hit on the Saints’ Darren Sproles. Sims is appealing.