Fox Sports’ Troy Aikman pointed out during the telecast that Nelson was not on the field for any play in the last drive. It didn’t prevent the Packers from winning, however, as quarterback Aaron Rodgers led a masterful drive that ended with a 12-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Davante Adams with 11 seconds to play to give the Packers a 35-31 victory.
Packers coach Mike McCarthy said after the game that Nelson is being evaluated and didn’t elaborate any further, according to Packers News’ Aaron Nagler.
Nelson was solid on the day, catching 2 passes for 24 yards cheap authentic jerseys and a touchdown, his 20th score since returning from the ACL tear which cost him the entire 2015 season. But he has dealt with injury issues since the return, including a quad injury which forced him to lead the Packers’ Week 2 game against Atlanta.
As for Nelson’s team, Green Bay is now 4-1 following the win in Arlington, Texas, cementing itself as one of the best teams in the NFL.
The Packers are also getting much healthier. Starting offensive tackle Bryan Bulaga, who had played in only one of the Packers’ first four games because of an ankle injury, suited up against the Cowboys. So did Adams, who just 10 days earlier left the Packers’ game against Chicago on a stretcher after a vicious hit to the head from Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan.
What’s more, David Bakhtiari, the Packers’ other starting tackle, practiced in pads last week and appears close to a return. He has been out since injuring a hamstring in the season opener. And running back Ty Montgomery (broken ribs sustained against the Bears) is not expected to miss many games.
Jordy Nelson was born in Manhattan, Kan. Today, he calls end zones all across the NFL his home.
After leading the NFL with 14 touchdown catches last season, Nelson is leading the league again with five this season.
How’s this for a remarkable stat: From 2014 through 2017, Nelson ranks third in the NFL with 32 touchdown receptions, five behind Odell Beckham and four behind Antonio Brown.
Nelson, of course, missed the entire 2015 season with a torn ACL. That means he’s played 10 fewer games than Beckham and 15 fewer games than Brown.
Whether it’s dialing long distance or delivering from close range, Nelson has been a touchdown machine. Since the start of the 2011 season, Nelson has 27 touchdowns from 10 yards and in; only Jimmy Graham (28) has more. That includes scores of 1, 4, 4 and 8 yards the past two weeks.
“I think some of the throws down there, just some of the route-running with the time clocks have been right on the money,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “That’s a big part of it. He’s got some good matchups. Jordy’s the type of guy, if you give him an inch, he’s going to take full advantage of it and he can turn it into a yard. Just does a great job with recognizing coverage, beating leverage and he’s just very technically sound. And, obviously, Aaron (Rodgers) has a ton of faith in him.”
Over that same span, Nelson leads the NFL with 21 touchdown receptions of 30-plus yards, including a 32-yarder in the opener. He also leads the league in 40- and 50-yard touchdowns.
Nelson, obviously, is a great receiver. Rodgers, obviously, is a great quarterback. Together, they are greater than the sum of their parts.
“Time and communication,” said Nelson, whose 68 career touchdowns rank second in Packers history to Hall of Famer Don Hutson’s 99. “I put communication on it more than anything. In practice. In games. In meetings. Walking down the hall. Seeing something on film. Constantly communicating. Trying to be on the same page. Trying to be one step ahead. Trying not to miss an opportunity when it shows itself. So, obviously, time allows us to see a lot of things, if it’s practice or in games, but I think just the way we’re able to communicate and understand the game, it grows over time.”
On Sunday, two of the NFL’s touchdown machines will take center stage at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Since the start of the 2011 season, Dallas’ Dez Bryant leads the NFL with 63 catches. Nelson is second with 62, despite playing 14 fewer games than Bryant. That figure doesn’t include Nelson’s 29-yard touchdown at AT&T Stadium in Super Bowl XLV.
“I think so much of that has to do with time on task together, experience, working individually, whether you’re throwing routes on air or you’re throwing one-on-ones or seven-on-seven or 11-on-11 situations in practice over time, and then carrying that to the game,” Dallas coach Jason Garrett, a former Cowboys quarterback, said of building a great quarterback-coach tandem. “I think developing a good personal relationship is important, where you communicate with each other and you try to get a feel for the other guy’s thinking and what he might or might not have seen on a particular play, so then you can grow and be ready for that next experience.”