The news, actually, was worse.
Raji didn’t just tear his biceps. Instead, the tendon was detached. Rather than perhaps returning in six weeks if the injury was merely a tear, Raji said the timeline for recovery is between six and nine months.
“That night was a tough night for me,” Raji said of the injury sustained in the preseason game against Oakland. “Then after that it was just like, listen, football has been great to me. I’m playing football for 14 years straight, so this is part of the game. I feel fortunate to have lasted that long without some serious injury. Just moving forward, it’s a part of the game, so really nothing you can do.”
Raji has had the surgery. Once the tendon is secure again, Raji can begin his rehab.
The injury did nothing to help Raji’s football future. Back in Green Bay on a one-year, $4 million contract, Raji was back at nose tackle and having a strong training camp. He hoped that would propel him to a strong season to boost the team and himself. Now, he faces an uncertain future.
“Right now, I’m just not looking further than my rehab,” he said. “Just trying to get better, making sure that when I’m able to start training that I’m in good position business-wise. I don’t want to get crazy out of shape, where people might have some questions. Just doing everything I can to help myself and whatever happens, happens.”
Raji has remained around the team during meetings, practices and games, doing what he can to help a young defensive line. It’s entirely possible his final games at Lambeau Field will be serving as an unofficial assistant coach.
“Just knowing how this league and life works, you can never count anything out,” he said. “I’ve thought about it, but it’s not my primary concern at this point. My primary concern is being around the team, trying to help when I can, still traveling with the team. Being around the team, that’s going to help a lot, but also making sure that when I’m cleared to work out that I do everything I can to ensure that I’m in shape.”
Agree or disagree?: Discuss hot Packers topics in our, free forums. Leave Bill a question in the subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum.
Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com, and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.