Matthew Stafford could return this season
The news Monday night that Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford will not undergo surgery for his shoulder injury, is good news for the Lions and their fans.
It appears there is a good chance he could be back on the field this season.
The Lions are a better team with Stafford in the game. Shaun Hill has done a respectable job while filling in. But on Sunday in Buffalo, he just didn’t have the
In three starts this season Stafford has six touchdowns and just one interception.
After an exam by noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews on Monday, it appears Stafford will rely on rehabilitation to get his shoulder healed.
In a statement released Monday night, the team said: “Dr. Andrews informed the team today that his evaluation of Matthew’s injury is consistent with the evaluation and diagnosis of the Lions’ medical staff.’’
Stafford injured his right/throwing shoulder late in the home game against the N.Y. Jets on Nov. 7. The next day coach Jim Schwartz said that surgery was not an option at that point.
Andrews’ opinion confirms that Stafford will not have surgery, at least as it appears now.
That means Stafford could return this season. If it was so serious that he could not come back, they would have placed him on the injured reserve list to clear a roster spot.
Also the statement said he will continue the rehabilitation that he started last week under the supervision of the team’s medical staff.
The team has never specifically said what he injury is although it is believed to be a shoulder separation and it’s the same shoulder that was separated in the opener on Sept. 12.
Stafford has started in just three of the Lions’ first nine games this season. He first injured this same shoulder near the end of the first half of the season opener at Chicago.
He came back and started against the Washington Redskins in which he threw four touchdown passes on the way to a 37-25 win. He also started at Ford Field against the N.Y. Jets which the Lions lost 23-20 in overtime.
Last year in his rookie season, he started just 10 games and was out with a left shoulder separation and a displaced knee cap.
Stafford was the first overall pick in the 2009 draft.
He does not have his arm is a sling and does not seem to favor it when he walks. Last week he was on the field observing every practice.
Shaun Hill, who broke his left forearm four weeks ago and was back in action on Sunday at Buffalo, is expected to get the start this Sunday at Dallas.
Andrews is based in Birmingham, Ala., and is also expected to examine Vikings quarterback Brett Favre this week.
(Follow me on Twitter @PaulaPasche.)