Packers' Collins set to hear key recommendation from surgeon

Packers safety Nick Collins is facing a pivotal moment in his career as he waits for a surgeon to tell him whether it's safe to begin playing football again.

"I think by Monday we'll know something," Collins' agent, Alan Herman, told the Green Bay Press-Gazette on Friday. "I assume we'll know something by Monday."

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According to the newspaper, Collins went to New York to be evaluated by Dr. Frank Cammisa, who operated on his neck to repair a herniated disc.

Collins was injured in Week 2 during a game against the Carolina Panthers while trying to tackle Jonathan Stewart. Collins was carted off the field and needed single-fusion surgery, causing him to miss the rest of the season.

Herman said the tests, such as MRIs, are key, because though Collins might think he's ready to take the field, "that doesn't necessarily mean that his body can withstand the tackling."

The newspaper reported that the team's medical staff might not clear Collins for action regardless of Cammisa's decision.

Packers coach Mike McCarthy is concerned about letting Collins back on the field, telling ESPN Wisconsin recently that he "would not let him play" if he were his son. Herman shares McCarthy's worries.

"If there's the least bit of an issue on any of his scans," Herman said, "I would tell him, 'You've been a Pro Bowl player, you've accomplished everything. You had an interception in the Super Bowl; you've won a Super Bowl. You've done, at this age, everything that you could do. Walk away healthy.' "

Collins, a seven-year veteran, made the Pro Bowl in 2008, 2009 and 2010. The 28-year-old has 417 career tackles and 21 interceptions since being selected by the Packers in the second round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He returned an interception 37 yards for a touchdown to help the Packers beat the Steelers in Super Bowl XLV.

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