Favre held out of practice due to broken thumb

Updated: October 27, 2003, 8:38 PM ET

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Brett Favre was held out of practice Monday to give his broken right thumb more time to heal, and could be cleared to throw by Wednesday as Green Bay prepared to play Minnesota.

Favre's thumb remained in a split as the Packers returned from a bye week, and coach Mike Sherman said he'll likely list Favre as probable on the injury report Wednesday.

Favre was able to grip the football and do some light tossing before practice.

"The swelling is down. He feels good and very optimistic, as is the doctor," Sherman said.

Favre played almost the entire game in the Packers' 34-24 loss Oct. 19 at St. Louis with a hairline fracture under the thumbnail of his throwing hand.

The injury occurred on Favre's second pass, about five minutes into the first quarter. Favre initially feared his season was over when the bone break was diagnosed the day after the game.

Team physician Pat McKenzie gave the three-time league MVP assurances he would be able to continue, the recovery helped by the two-week break between games.

Favre, who has started a league record 181 straight regular-season games, watched backup Doug Pederson handle the first-team reps during practice.

At the end of practice, Favre joined teammates on the field for some running drills. He also didn't participate in two practices last week during the team's shortened work week.

Favre didn't speak to reporters after practice, but gave a thumb's up sign with his right thumb as he passed through the locker room.

Sherman plans to see how the thumb responds to a couple more days of rest before working Favre back into practice.

There's a chance Favre could be cleared to throw Wednesday, when preparations begin in earnest for the Vikings.

"We'll have to play that by ear," Sherman said. "I'm not going to jeopardize his ability to throw on Sunday by pushing him too early. We'll decide on that on Wednesday."

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index