Dan Campbell explains what it took for Sam LaPorta to play vs. Rams
Following the Detroit Lions‘ AMAZING 24-23 playoff victory over the Los Angeles Rams, head coach Dan Campbell shed light on the remarkable recovery process that enabled rookie tight end Sam LaPorta to participate in the game. During the win, LaPorta had three catches for 14 yards and a HUGE touchdown catch.
LaPorta's Injury Against the Vikings
During the final regular-season game against the Minnesota Vikings, where Campbell opted to play his starters to vie for the NFC's No. 2 seed, LaPorta sustained a knee injury. This incident led to speculations about his availability for the rest of the season, especially considering his record-breaking rookie performance throughout his rookie campaign.
Intensive Rehabilitation and Team Effort
Campbell highlighted the extensive efforts of the medical team, including trainer Brett Fischer and others, in facilitating LaPorta's rapid recovery.
“He did a ton,” Campbell noted, crediting the medical team for their round-the-clock care and possibly some unorthodox healing methods, jokingly referred to as “voodoo magic.” The primary focus was on reducing the swelling and ensuring LaPorta felt confident and comfortable in his knee's condition.
“He did a ton,” Campbell said. “It's a credit to Fisch and those guys. Sundeen, the trainers, all those guys to get him back. Honestly, it was kind of 24-hour care. I don't know all the voodoo magic they did to him.”
LaPorta's Determination and Progress
By Wednesday, it was evident to Campbell that LaPorta was gaining confidence in his ability to play. His condition improved steadily each day, a testament to the determination of LaPorta and the skill of the medical staff.
“I felt like, Wednesday, you just want to make sure that he feels comfortable. You could tell by Wednesday, he was, ‘Alright, I can do this.' It just got better and better every day. Credit to all those guys, and certainly, Sam. He's tough, he wasn't gonna let it hold him down.”
TL;DR (too long didn't read)
- Rapid Recovery for LaPorta: Detroit Lions rookie tight end Sam LaPorta made a remarkable recovery from a knee injury sustained in the regular-season finale against the Minnesota Vikings, enabling him to play a crucial role in the Lions' playoff victory over the Rams.
- Extensive Medical Effort: Head coach Dan Campbell credited the Lions' medical team, including trainer Brett Fischer, for their intensive and round-the-clock care that facilitated LaPorta's quick return to the field, involving methods to reduce swelling and ensure knee stability.
- LaPorta's Determination: LaPorta's toughness and determination were highlighted by Campbell, who noted the rookie's resolve to overcome his injury and contribute significantly to the team's playoff success, including scoring a key touchdown.
Bottom Line: A Key Contributor in Lions' Victory
Sam LaPorta's return to the field and his significant contribution, including a crucial touchdown in the first half, were vital to the Lions' success against the Rams. His ability to overcome injury and perform at a high level in such a short time frame speaks volumes about his character and the support system within the Lions organization. This collective effort and LaPorta's grit were instrumental in the Lions' memorable playoff win.