The Detroit Lions aren’t saying much about the status of quarterback Matthew Stafford’s separated right shoulder. But coach Jim Schwartz said Friday that Stafford will be getting the shoulder looked at on Monday by the dean of NFL orthopedic specialists.
Stafford will fly to Alabama for a visit with Dr. James Andrews.
“He’ll go there in the morning and come back in the afternoon
,” Schwartz said, per Carlos Monarrez of the Detroit Free Press
. “It’s been a scheduled trip. Dr. Andrews has been in communication with our [medical staff]. He has seen all his MRIs and his X-rays but wanted to physically evaluate him after his swelling and soreness went down.”
It’s a procedure that the Lions used after Stafford hurt his shoulder during a Week One loss to the Bears.
“He made these trips the first time he got hurt,” Schwartz said. “It didn’t do a whole lot of good to get him down there to be examined when he was still sore and still swollen. Matt’s coming along nicely, and he’s to that point that now we’re going to get a first-hand look from Dr. Andrews.
“But Dr. Andrews has already seen all the testing and everything else and evaluated him the first time, so he has good perspective of where he is the first time and now. And then last year, too. Different shoulder, but last year also. I mean, [Stafford] could buy an apartment down there.”
(Good one. Next time Schwartz should simply say he doesn’t need a hug like Brett Favre.)
If Stafford indeed has suffered a Grade 3 shoulder separation, season-ending surgery becomes more likely. If the damage can be healed with rest and/or rehab, the Lions could try to get him ready to come back later in the year.
Sooner or later, however, it won’t make sense to expose Stafford to yet another injury during the portion of the 2010 regular season that essentially serves as early stages of the 2011 preseason.