T.J. Hockenson put a scare into the Detroit Lions and everyone who watches the NFL when he attempted a hurdle, fell flat and remained motionless on the Ford Field turf on Sunday. Fortunately, the rookie tight end was able to get up and later avoided a hospital stay, even though he was diagnosed with a concussion.
Following Detroit’s 34-30 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, Lions’ head coach Matt Patricia provided a critical update on Hockenson’s condition, while admitting he was just as upset as everybody else at seeing the injury play out up close on the field.
“He did not (go to the hospital). That was not a good situation to walk out into. We’ll just go through everything as far as that’s concerned. I did get him to smile when he finally sat up, so that was good. That made me feel a little better. But you don’t like to see those at all,” Patricia told reporters after the game.
Here’s a look at the scary fall:
Hockenson didn’t end up finishing the game after the brutal looking injury, but was said to be in good spirits afterward. Compounding the unfortunate situation, his parents were in attendance and watched the injury play out in real time. The fact that Hockenson was able to avoid a long hospital stay after such a fall seems like a miracle in itself.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter also provided more good news, revealing that Hockenson would not be going on injured reserve for the Lions.
Earlier in the day, Hockenson caught a touchdown pass from Matthew Stafford to put the Lions up 10-0. In addition to getting involved in the passing game, he was looking the part of a fearsome blocker up front to help pave the way for Detroit’s ground game, which got going to the tune of 186 yards on the ground. Hockenson is known as a fearless player at his position, and the attempt at the hurdle proves that. Patricia, though, stressed caution is also needed when attempting such moves on the field.
“I would say that would be a very fair assessment. That we got to be very careful when you do leap and you do go up in the air, there’s an added risk that’s involved in the play. A lot of times, those guys take real calculated risks in those situations. Sometimes it’s something we’ve seen on tape maybe previously, an opportunity, maybe a guy goes low. In that particular situation, we’re trying to keep the players as safe as possible,” he said.
Thus far this season, Hockenson has 2 touchdowns to his credit and 166 receiving yards. He’s a young star in the making for a team which has needed a game changer at tight end for a long time. After being the team’s top pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, it’s a welcome sight for Detroit.
The best news? Hockenson now has Detroit’s impending bye week to rest up and try to get ready for the rest of the season. He’s been a significant new weapon for the team, and obviously, his overall health is most important at this point in time.
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