There was momentary hope last week that Aaron Rodgers would return for the Green Bay Packers for the rest of this season, and now that possibility is gone.

Aaron Rodgers injury news

The team placed their veteran quarterback, a two-time NFL MVP — on injured reserve again on Tuesday.

Rodgers, 34, missed seven games after he fractured his right clavicle on Oct. 15 at Minnesota. He returned Sunday against Carolina. But after Green Bay (7-7) lost to the Panthers and Atlanta won on Monday night, the Packers were eliminated from playoff contention with two games remaining this regular season. It’s the first time the Packers will miss the postseason since Rodgers’ first year as a starter (2008).

Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Rodgers did not experience any pain in his collarbone against the Panthers on Sunday — during which he threw three touchdown passes — but did not say whether the team would have also benched him had they reached the postseason this year.

“With all the factors involved, we felt this was clearly in Aaron Rodgers’ best interest,” McCarthy said. “He’s not happy about it. It’s a hard day for him. This is not the way, I don’t think, any player wants to see their season come to a conclusion, being on IR. We all understand and appreciate and respect his competitive spirit, but we felt as an organization this was in his best interest.”

Rodgers also tossed three interceptions and was sacked three times on Sunday.

Brett Hundley, who went 3-4 in place of Rodgers this season, will start Saturday night at home against the Minnesota Vikings. Green Bay re-signed backup Joe Callahan, who was released last week when the team activated Rodgers off IR.

McCarthy added the Packers may still make a few more roster moves. Green Bay also recently released practice squad quarterback Jerod Evans.

Rodgers had surgery on Oct. 19 to have 13 screws and two plates implanted to stabilize his collarbone.

“He’s the leader. … He did a lot of really good things in the Carolina game,” said McCarthy of Rodgers. “To play and come back and have the challenge, I mean, they’re an excellent defense. But yes, I think it shows you his competitive spirit and his will to be a champion and you know, we fully went into Carolina with the expectations to win the game.”

After Minnesota, the Packers will visit Detroit on Dec. 31 for their season finale.

ARLINGTON, TX – JANUARY 15: Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass in the first half during the NFC Divisional Playoff Game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

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