Matthew Stafford's return doesn't appear to be imminent, but he did continue to progress with his rehab by throwing short passes during practice today. The throws were no longer than 12 yards and he only did about a dozen of them, but at the very least it looks like he is working his way back from his second right shoulder injury of the season.
The Lions have maintained all along that they hoped to get Stafford back in the lineup before the end of the season. If there aren't any setbacks, it appears that Stafford might be ready for the final game or two, but no timetable has been established. The Lions will continue to be very cautious with Stafford's recovery.
Originally I figured the Lions would shut Stafford down for the season and look ahead to 2011, but if he is healthy enough to play, I do see the value in getting him playing time. You obviously don't want to risk injury, but the Lions need to see if Stafford can take hits without being hurt.
My original hope was that Stafford would just rehab the rest of the season and not take a chance of getting hurt again, but I'm starting to change my tune a bit. If he is completely healthy and there's no risk of suffering the same injury by rushing back, then I say play him. Getting reps and taking hits will help him get back into game shape, even if it is only for a week or two. Like I said before, you obviously don't want to risk another injury, but at some point he has to show he can stay healthy, so why not the last two games of the season?