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Will Packers star David Bakhtiari actually return in Week 3 vs. Tom Brady, Buccaneers?

David Bakhtiari, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers

It has now been 21 months since we saw David Bakhtiari on the field for the Green Bay Packers. The two-time All-Pro offensive tackle tore his ACL in December of 2020, and he’s been on the shelf since. After being forced to sit out the entire year last season, it now sounds like the 30-year-old is closing in on a much-anticipated return to action.

Sunday’s Week 3 marquee matchup against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would be an excellent opportunity for Bakhtiari to come back after nearly two years. At this point, however, his status for Sunday still remains up in the air.

Packers reporter Matt Schneidman of The Athletic reports that Bakhtiari has officially been tagged as questionable for the Packers’ third game of the season:

It is worth noting, though, that Bakhtiari seems to be ramping it up in practice of late. On Friday, the three-time Pro Bowler put in his second consecutive day of practice this week (via Ryan Wood of USATODAY):

#Packers LT David Bakhtiari is practicing today, his second straight day of practice. It doesn’t mean he’ll make his 2022 debut Sunday but … it can’t hurt.

In spite of this encouraging development, however, Packers head coach Matt LaFleur isn’t taking any chances on his star OT. Green Bay seems more than comfortable with taking a slow and steady approach for Bakhtiari as he looks to come back from a major injury:

Matt LaFleur said David Bakhtiari won’t practice 3 days in a row. He also indicated he would be on a day, off a day, on. That appears to be more fluid, since he has more than once. He has not practiced 3 days in a row, though.

David Bakhtiari’s chances of suiting up against the Bucs on Sunday does not appear to be very good. What you can say for sure, however, is that he’s getting closer. It won’t be long before Aaron Rodgers gets his top blocker back.