Earlier on Monday, Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz said that he hadn't heard back from doctors on the status of running back Jahvid Best. Fast forward to Monday evening and we now have an answer to the questions about Best's status. Unfortunately, the news isn't good, as Best won't be returning to the field at this time. Doctors did not give him clearance to return to action, meaning he is out for the foreseeable future.
Lions general manager Martin Mayhew released a statement on the news:
"After today's consultation with medical experts, including representatives from our medical and training staffs, it has been determined that Jahvid will not be permitted to return to play at this time," Lions General Manager Martin Mayhew said.
"Throughout this entire process we always have placed the highest priority on what is best for Jahvid from a health and safety standpoint," Mayhew continued. "While today's decision is disappointing from a football perspective, we fully and entirely respect and support this recommendation.
"Jahvid will continue to work with our medial and training staffs with the hope that he ultimately will be cleared to return to the playing field."
Had he been cleared, Best would have been eligible to be activated from the PUP list at any time in the next three weeks. With him not getting clearance, he will likely stay on the PUP list for the rest of the season, ending any hopes of him playing in 2012. He has already missed the last year because of concussion issues, and now it appears he is going to be out for at least the rest of 2012.
As Mayhew said, this is disappointing from a football perspective. It would have been really nice for the Lions to get Best back, especially in time for next Monday's showdown with the Chicago Bears. I'm not quite sure what the issue is that's holding doctors back from clearing him considering Best has said he isn't experiencing concussion-like symptom, but clearly something isn't right.
From a health standpoint, this is probably for the best. Best has already suffered multiple concussions in his career, and another one could be devastating to his current and future health. Perhaps that's why doctors are hesitant to clear him to return.
In any case, the end result is the same -- Best won't be playing football anytime soon. While I'm sure he will continue to try and set up a future comeback, I'd be shocked if he plays football again based on how this situation has played out.
UPDATE: Best posted this on Twitter after this news came out:
Thanks for the love and support! #golions— Jahvid best (@J4hvidbest) October 15, 2012