Hock at practice today

When the Detroit Lions returned to the practice field on Wednesday after the bye week, rookie tight end T.J. Hockenson was among the players suiting up in Allen Park. That’s a great sign for Hockenson, but he’s still not out of the woods just yet.

Hockenson remains in the concussion protocol after his nasty fall during the Week 4 game against the Chiefs. No. 88 tried to hurdle a defender but instead was flung up high in the air and crashed down upon his helmet and shoulder.

Lions coach Matt Patricia stated Hockenson was indeed at practice but still not cleared from the NFL’s concussion protocol. Part of getting out of the brain injury recovery program is the ability to complete a practice without any symptoms of the concussion, such as blurred or double vision, dizziness, nausea or excessive fatigue.

It’s a step in the right direction for Hockenson to play on Monday night against the Packers, but it’s still not a sure thing.

Me: I sure hope he’s out there and good to go. Have yet to see anything about the other injured players.


Man, hate to see a Stafford bullet slip through his hands and smack him in the helmet… Don’t throw him the ball till Friday or game time warm-ups.

Info about the Concussion Protocol: (from PoD)

### Step 1: Rest and recovery

This one is simple. After suffering a concussion, a team must provide ample rest for their player. That means limited physical and cognitive activities. Stretching is still permitted, provided the medical staff approves.

Once a player has a baseline level of symptoms, they move onto the next step.

### Step 2: Light aerobic activities

The player can participate in things like riding a stationary bike or treadmill. During this step, the player may also attend team meetings and film study.

Neurocognitive testing may begin at this phase, too, meaning players will be tested to see if their baseline symptoms have increased or decreased. If there is any sign of an increase, the player must revert to the previous step.

### Step 3: More aerobic exercise and strength training

Exercise training can increase in intensity and can even mimic some specific sport activities at this step. Players may also participate in “supervised strength training.”

### Step 4: Football specific activities

At this point, if the player has not seen an increase in concussion symptoms, they may practice at a non-contact level. That means throwing, catching, running, or any other positional drills that do not involve contact with players or objects (e.g. dummies, sleds).

If the player does not exhibit any post-practice symptoms, they can advance to the final step.

### Step 5: Full football activity

The player can then take part in a full football practice, with pads, with full contact. One interesting stipulation is that a player can simulate this step if there is no full-contact practice left on the schedule that week (i.e. a walkthrough). Here’s how the NFL explains it:

> if a player cannot participate in practice or full contact with other players due to the time of year and/or rules imposed by the Collective Bargaining Agreement, simulated contact activity will suffice to satisfy this step.

Once the player has fully practiced, he must be first cleared by the team physician. If he clears, he then must be examined by the Independent Neurological Consultant. If that consultant clears the player of concussion symptoms, he is free to play in the next game.

As it all relates to Hockenson, Lions head coach Matt Patricia indicated that the rookie tight end would be there during Wednesday’s practice, but had not cleared protocol. Depending on his level of involvement, that appears to suggest Hockenson has progressed to at least Step 5 of the protocol.

Me: I wouldn’t say Hock is in Step 5, he could still be in Step 4. Don’t know though. I think he’s lookin’ good for MNF unless he has a setback.


Thank you Wise. Any word on our other guys that have been out? I would really like to see Hand and Daniels practicing.

Added: Hockenson was fully padded today, sounds like Step 5 to me. Gotta pass independent examination tho.

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I just hope they don’t rush Hockenson back, take your time. I’d rather see him have a long career than a win now.

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Thanks for sharing. I too wondered why they didn’t use a backboard with Rudolph.