The Green Bay Packers are expected to place center J.C. Tretter on short-term injured reserve, according to Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com, but as of the end of business on Tuesday, Tretter wasn't listed on the league's transaction wire.
NFL teams are allowed to designate only one player to return per season, like the Packers did with wide receiver Randall Cobb in 2013.
Per league rules, Tretter couldn't begin practicing until after Week 6 and can't play until after Week 8. With the Packers receiving their bye Week 9, Tretter wouldn't be able to play in a game until Week 10 at the earliest.
Described as a fracture by Demovsky, Tretter was injured in the Packers' third preseason game against the Chiefs, leading to rookie Corey Linsley becoming the team's starting center entering the season opener at Seattle on Thursday.
Tretter was ruled out of the season opener as of Monday when the Packers released their first injury report of the season.
This marks the second year Tretter will miss the beginning of the season after breaking his ankle prior to his 2013 campaign and being played on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list before eventually being activated but not playing the last month of the season.
Placing Tretter on short-term injured reserve represents a risk if the team suffers an injury to another key player that might be able return later in the season, but on the flip side, the Packers would be waiting for an injury that may or may not happen that meets the precise requirements of being bad enough to miss several weeks but not bad enough to place on season-ending injured reserve.
If Tretter were placed on short-term injured reserve, it would open up a spot on the 53-man roster the Packers could fill immediately, and although there's several directions the team could go, there's no indication of who they might sign.
When Tretter is able to return, the Packers would have to make a corresponding transaction by making room on their roster.
While Tretter is out, the Packers are thin at the center position with guards Josh Sitton and T.J. Lang serving as the backups, both players more comfortable at guard.
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