Jeff Hanisch/USA TODAY

Packers LB Clay Matthews Optimistic (Again) That He Will Play This Week

Clay Matthews and David Bakhtiari were limited but Damarious Randall sat out another practice. "Hopefully, that’s the end of it moving forward," Matthews said after missing the last three games.

The Green Bay Packers could get back at least a couple of injured starters for Sunday’s game at Washington.

First and foremost, it’s outside linebacker Clay Matthews, who has missed the past three games with an injured hamstring. He was certain he’d be back for the game against Indianapolis two weeks ago but suffered a setback. “I did a little too much, I guess.” That setback sidelined him for that game as well as last week’s loss at Indianapolis.

“I feel good,” he said. “I feel like I’m ahead of where I was headed going into that week. Barring any setback, I plan to be out there this week.”

Matthews was listed as limited participation for a second consecutive day.

Sign up for Packer Report!
Why join?

“I think it’s obviously smart to play it safe,” he said. “I’ll get the reps I need to out there and we’ll be smart about it. We’ll just play it by ear when the game comes along. Like I said when we started, I feel good about where I’m at right now. Hopefully, that’s the end of it moving forward.”

The Packers badly need him. In the four games he’s missed, the Packers have allowed 34.5 points per game.

“Having dropped three in a row now, it’s difficult to watch, especially when you want to have a hand in whatever’s going on out there and be a part of those wins or losses as an accountable teammate,” he said. “It’s difficult to see. The good thing about it is we’re only one game out of being the division leader. It starts this weekend.”

Tight end Jared Cook was full participation for a second consecutive day. He’s missed the last six games with a high ankle sprain. Before Thursday’s practice, coach Mike McCarthy said Cook “looked good” on Wednesday and that he was “excited to see how much he does today.”

Damarious Randall, however, must have suffered a setback in his return from a groin injury because he sat out practice for the second consecutive day. Randall has missed the last four games. His return certainly would have been welcomed by the Packers as they get ready for the Redskins. Quarterback Kirk Cousins is averaging 302 passing yards per game.

“Just kind of where he is,” McCarthy said before practice. “These guys are all on a schedule, a protocol, and targets they’re trying to hit based on how they move through that and progress by the end of the week.”

Right guard T.J. Lang didn’t practice again and left tackle David Bakhtiari, wearing a knee brace, was limited. Can he play up to his usual standard at less than his best physically?

“Yeah,” Bakhtiari said. “I’m going to be me, whatever shape or form that is. I’m going to go out there and give it my damned best. That’s what I do every time I go out there.”

T David Bakhtiari Knee Limited Limited
WR Randall Cobb Hamstring Limited Limited
TE Jared Cook Ankle Full Full
DB Micah Hyde Shoulder Limited Full
G T.J. Lang Foot DNP DNP
OLB Clay Matthews Hamstring Limited Limited
WR Ty Montgomery Illness DNP Full
CB Damarious Randall Groin DNP DNP
CB Quinten Rollins Groin Limited Limited
LB Jake Ryan Ankle DNP DNP
C J.C. Tretter Knee DNP DNP
S Will Blackmon Thumb Full Full
WR DeSean Jackson Shoulder Limited Limited
DE Anthony Lanier Thigh Full Full
T Morgan Moses Ankle Full Full
T Vinston Painter Not injury related Not listed DNP
LB Nick Sundberg Back Not listed DNP

Bill Huber is publisher of and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at or leave him a question in Packer Report’s subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at

Packer Report Top Stories