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Chargers TE Ladarius Green suffers a concussion; could still play vs. Lions

The tight end indeed has a concussion. Will he sit or play on Sunday?

After being evaluated Wednesday, it was announced Thursday that tight end Ladarius Green indeed has a concussion.

It appears Green suffered the concussion during practice Wednesday. He was not ruled out for Sunday's game; instead, Chargers head coach Mike McCoy said "if he's healthy, he'll play."

Green was in the locker room Thursday, sitting and chatting with teammates. He appeared in good spirits.

Concussions vary from individual to individual. Some return within days; others, within months. It's Green's second concussion in a year -- he suffered one in December of last year and did not play in the final three games of the season. He will need to pass concussion protocol before being cleared to practice (and, eventually, to play).

This was to be Green's chance to finally have a prominent place in the offense with veteran tight end Antonio Gates serving a four-game suspension for using performance enhancing drugs. It still could be, though there's a chance Green will sit the first game or possible more.

"It's gotta be tough," offensive coordinator Frank Reich said Thursday. "This is a great opportunity for him. Hopefully he's ready to go, but you also have to be smart. You can't just try to rush back in for one game, just because it's your opportunity. We gotta have the long view in mind. But, we'll just take that day-by-day and see how it goes."

The Chargers re-signed tight end John Phillips Thursday, who they had cut Saturday when they whittled the roster to 53 players. Tyreek Burwell was released in a corresponding move.

Phillips has been with the Chargers since 2013. He knows the offense well and can jump right into practice. He provides some comfort with Green's uncertainty, though for now, he's there "in case of emergency," as his full season salary is guaranteed if he is on the roster Week 1. It would seem that if Green is good to go, Phillips could again be released.

Said offensive coordinator Frank Reich:

"You've got to be ready to adapt. Thankfully we have a lot of good players that we can do that with. Whether that means other tight ends step up or you change personnel groups a little bit more and other guys step up, Mike [McCoy] does a good job of preparing everybody for that mentally and physically, the way we rotate things in practice.”


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