This Jermichael Finley situation gets murkier by the day. After injuring his neck in the Green Bay Packers win over Cleveland on Sunday, here’s what we know.
First, Finley is up and walking again, which is great. Second, he was diagnosed with a spinal bruise. It turns out that could mean any number of things — a stinger, a herniated disk, a fractured joint, a loose vertebrae or stenosis, which is a narrowing of the spinal canal.
Then you’ve got USA Today saying that Finley probably won’t need surgery to repair the injury. Meanwhile, the Journal Sentinel is suggesting he will.
“If you don’t have any stenosis and you have full recovery of strength and full range of motion and there is no fracture, there is a possibility you would not need fusion surgery,” said Wellington Hsu, an endowed professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and practicing surgeon with offices in Chicago. “But I would be worried if we were not able to find anything.”
That could mean Finley would need cervical fusion surgery, which is what ended Nick Collins’ career. Although, other players, most notably Peyton Manning, have returned after sitting out a year.
We also know Finley is still under evaluation, which the Press Gazette suggests means he has stenosis.
Dr. Neel Anand, a surgeon and director of spine trauma at Cedars-Sinai Spine Center in Los Angeles, said that if Finley’s evaluation process is as protracted as reports suggest, then his MRI probably revealed some form of stenosis — either congenital or caused by the injury.
Basically, everyone is just speculating right now and no one really knows anything. However, it’s starting to look like it would be really surprising if Finley played another down this season.