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Old 11-12-2010   #1
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Default AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

A timely L.A. Times A.P. piece by Kristie Rieken:

Quote:
WR Johnson fights through ankle injury, hoping to get Texans on track and into the playoffs

3:32 PM PST, November 11, 2010


HOUSTON (AP) — Andre Johnson isn't himself.

When people ask how he feels, he'll say he's OK, but he's still struggling with a sprained right ankle almost two months after it was injured.

But Johnson hates excuses and the problem won't keep him from helping the Houston Texans. It can't.

The star receiver has been waiting his entire career to reach the playoffs and he'll need a big second half to get the Texans (4-4) to that goal.

"When I'm out there I'm just playing and I'm going to give it everything I've got, whether it's a hurt ankle or not," he said. "I'm going to keep battling and just doing what I've got to do to try to be as healthy as I can so I can go out and perform well on Sunday."

Johnson has 635 yards receiving with three touchdowns, missing one game because of the ankle. But it just hasn't healed as quickly and he has been forced to wear a brace. He hasn't practiced this week after an MRI on Monday revealed that there was still swelling and he was advised to take it easy.

The Texans expect him to play this week at Jacksonville. Coach Gary Kubiak raved about the toughness Johnson has shown in dealing with this injury.

"It just tells you what he's made of," Kubiak said. "He's out there playing, not at 100 percent, but he's playing. And to not only be not 100 percent and then to get double teamed, he has his work cut out for him. But he knows how important he is to the team and how important it is that he's out there. So he's giving us everything he has."

The injury has been particularly bothersome for Johnson because different things seem to irritate it.

"You never know when it will bother you," he said. "Sometimes it's a little nagging pain that you feel. I can't predict when it's going to happen. Sometimes I may go up and catch a ball and come down on it and I may not feel nothing. Sometimes I may go up and catch a ball and come down and it pains me."

He has learned to think of it as simply another obstacle he has to deal with. The few times he's tweaked it in games he'll just go to the sideline and walk around for a couple of minutes and then let the team know he's ready to return.

Though he's not 100 percent, he has still been able to be effective since the injury. That was most evident he was injured on Sept. 19. Johnson left the game against Washington in the third quarter, but returned in the fourth quarter to make a leaping touchdown catch in the end zone that tied the game that the Texans eventually won 30-27.

Dealing with the injury in that game was one thing, but still fighting with it weeks later has been trying.

"It's very frustrating because you've been dealing with it for so long," he said. "It gets frustrating at times but it's something you have to learn how to fight through. I don't feel like it's holding me back. But I do wish it was feeling a lot better."

So do the Texans, who need a win Sunday against their AFC South foe.

NOTES: SS Dominique Barber had arthroscopic surgery on his knee on Thursday and was placed on the injured reserve. The Texans claimed CB Jason Allen off waivers to take his spot on the roster. Houston also released C Brett Helms from the practice squad and signed C Cody Wallace to the practice squad.
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Old 11-12-2010   #2
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

This is killing my FF team.
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Old 11-12-2010   #3
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Cool Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

Is it not a high ankle sprain?
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Old 11-12-2010   #4
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

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Is it not a high ankle sprain?
Yes.
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Old 11-12-2010   #5
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

AJ was not given enough rest time for his high ankle sprain to expect anything but what we are seeing now. If the Texans insist on trodding (or agreeing to it) AJ out there (and still want him around in any further future capacity), the coaching staff and Schaub better take care to avoid throwing to his feet (especially behind him) like we've been seeing Schaub do so often. The stress on his high ankle sprain is maximized with these manuevers because his weight is fulcrumed (and twisted if behind him) such that the stress is borne strictly on his ankles. This is even worse than the stresses placed on fast route cuts. And much worse than any straight up and down high jump ball.
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Old 11-12-2010   #6
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

At this point, I'd just as soon them not play him and let him heal. Run the ball and let the other recievers step up. It's really not doing anyone any good, most especially AJ, to keep putting off his healing. If the Texans actually get their act togeather and win some games, we'll need him later at full speed.
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Old 11-12-2010   #7
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

They should have kept him out of the games following the Raiders until the bye. It's still possible to win if you have a running game and a TE to throw to.
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Old 11-12-2010   #8
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

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Originally Posted by Brisco_County View Post
They should have kept him out of the games following the Raiders until the bye. It's still possible to win if you have a running game and a TE to throw to.
easy to say that in hind sight now. When you really need some wins badly it's hard to keep a guy like AJ off the field knowing how badly you need him and if he says he can play. I won't fault the coaches decisions there, but these ankle sprains are proving more and more that you just need to let the player sit it out until the ankle is fully healed. Ryan Mathews entire season has been screwed because his ankle sprain.
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Old 11-12-2010   #9
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

This is the same injury Anquan Boldin had last year. He tried to play through it, but ended up being only 50% effective. It's just not worth it until the playoffs. I hope he gets well soon, but it's just not worth it at this point. Let him rest a week or two.
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Old 11-12-2010   #10
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Default Re: AJ Fighting Formidable Opponent..........INJURY

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Originally Posted by Texecutioner View Post
easy to say that in hind sight now. When you really need some wins badly it's hard to keep a guy like AJ off the field knowing how badly you need him and if he says he can play. I won't fault the coaches decisions there, but these ankle sprains are proving more and more that you just need to let the player sit it out until the ankle is fully healed. Ryan Mathews entire season has been screwed because his ankle sprain.

This was not a "simple" ankle sprain, which is bad enough. This was a high ankle sprain. These only heal with time.........lengthy stringent time at rest with appropriate rehab. These aren't healed with magic platelet voodoo injections which has been proven to this point no more effective than placebo. Or ankle braces which offer the barest of added stability even in cases of mild sprain. Or anesthetic injections or narcotics that blunt the pain, encouraging further damage due to no benefit of the protective senses. Despite it not being the best of decisions, it's hard to blame AJ for his fearsome sacrificing attitude. Clairvoyance is not expected of the organization. But with reasonable consideration of the known typical history of such an injury, using some semblance of foresight is the responsibility of the medical/training and coaching staff.
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