The Green Bay Packers are still holding out hope that Aaron Rodgers can return from a collarbone injury and save their season by playing ahead of schedule and late in the year. If that sounds familiar, it should:

Rodgers did just that in 2013, suffering a November injury that held him out until Week 17, when he came back to beat the Bears and push the Packers into the playoffs at 8-7-1.

Rodgers was spotted winging 50-yard passes before the Steelers game last Sunday night, a tight matchup the Packers barely lost. Unfortunately for the Packers, Rodgers isn't eligible to return for three more weeks.
But there is good news on this Friday: Rodgers is expected back at practice on Saturday, according to coach Mike McCarthy.

"We're looking tomorrow to potentially practice him in a trial return," McCarthy said Friday morning per Rob Demovsky of ESPN. "That's the outlook. We'll determine that tomorrow after his work today."

Quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt said Rodgers is "probably ahead of the curve a little bit" and said the quarterback is "doing well." Clay Matthews thinks the Packers should have kept Rodgers off IR so they could bring him back sooner.

Regardless, it seems like the earliest Rodgers could be ready to play would be Week 14 against the Browns -- that's a game the Packers should win regardless of who's at quarterback. Rodgers won't be actually eligible, because of the IR designation, until the Week 15 game against the Panthers on Dec. 17.

Can the Packers still make a playoff run, even after the debilitating loss to the Steelers in primetime last week? Absolutely. Here's the paths they can take to make the playoffs.