Over the last few years, the Detroit Lions have had a string of freak injuries that continued this week. TE Joseph Fauria tried to stop his dog, Lil’ Rufio, from peeing inside the house and ended up spraining his ankle. It was originally reported that he hurt his ankle playing volleyball with some friends, which would have been more likely and less embarrassing for a professional athlete.
The Detroit Lions are no stranger to this type of freak accident. Last year, WR Nate Burleson broke his arm in a car crash. Nothing strange there – until it was discovered that the accident was caused when Burleson tried to save a pizza box from falling to the floor.
Earlier this season, Detroit linebacker Stephen Tulloch tore his ACL and ended his season after celebrating a sack on quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Tulloch was so excited that he was able to take down the Green Bay signal caller that he decided to use Rodgers’ signature celebration to taunt him. As Tulloch came back down, he landed wrong on his knee and fell to the ground and had to be carted off the field.
Fauria has since taken to Twitter, posting a picture of him and the adorable (possibly mean-spirited) puppy. He says he is just focusing on getting back on the field as soon as possible. He pleads with the Twitter universe to please not send death threats to Lil’ Rufio as he is “just a pup.” In an offense that contains Matt Stafford, Golden Tate, Reggie Bush and the man they call “Megatron,” fans will probably not be missing him enough to engage in threats to the puppy.
In the early 2014 season, Fauria had three catches for 49 yards and zero touchdowns, which is behind Detroit’s rookie TE, Eric Ebron (six catches, 72 yards and one touchdown), and ranks seventh on the team. However, Fauria also brings leadership and excitement to the team.
In September of last season, he caught two TD passes in his first professional game ever. After the second one, he gave his best “Gronk spike” and then proceeded to do his very own rendition of Nsync’s famous “Bye bye bye” dance.
With the string of freak injuries that are hitting the Detroit Lions, including the latest episode where their TE suffered a sprained ankle while chasing after his dog to stop him from peeing in the house, Lions players may want to take extra precautions both on and off the field. The buddy system may be a good way to stay healthy. Well, that and ordering in pizzas, hiring a dog trainer and not trying to mock the opposing team after sacks.
Football is a rough and dangerous sport as it is. Injury can occur on any and all plays. Concussions end careers early and players sometimes never recover from torn-ACL injuries. The players work their whole lives to get there, and practice harder than most normal people can even comprehend to be where they are. The last thing any player wants when they look back on their career is to think, “If only I had called Pizza Hut, I might still be playing.”
Detroit fans wish Fauria a speedy recovery. It is hoped that his Twitter followers are not too harsh on Lil’ Rufio for the sprained ankle. The Detroit Lions look to be in good shape heading into week five, and fans surely look forward to an updated TD dance – just as long as the next time his adorable pup looks to be planning to “go” in the house, Fauria simply looks the other way.
Commentary by Andy Lapic