Chicago Sun-Times

Matt Forte appears to have low-grade MCL sprain

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Bears running Matt Forte left Soldier Field without crutches and a brace.

A knee surgeon who works with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Dodgers said that's a very encouraging sign for Forte and the Bears.

"When you have a valgus injury, where your knee goes inward, you are concerned about the MCL and the ACL," said Dr. Daniel Kharrazi, a surgeon at Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles who serves as a knee consultant with the Lakers, Dodgers and several other professional sports teams. "If all he has is an isolated MCL, he's pretty lucky."

From his home in Los Angeles, Dr. Kharrazi watched the jarring hit in the first quarter, when Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson drilled Forte squarely on his right knee with his left shoulder.

In 2009, Forte played through an MCL sprain, a reinforcement of his toughness. But this could be a different injury, the extent of which won't be fully known until doctors see the MRI results. One of the keys will be determining how much inflammation there is.

"The bottom line is, the MRI will determine the grade of the injury and, on average, how much time it will take for that to heal," Kharrazi said.

As he left the stadium, Forte said, "I'll be fine."

He'll undergo an MRI today, but the Sun-Times first reported that the expectation is that Forte suffered a medial collateral ligament sprain on his right knee.

"We just have to keep our fingers crossed," Bears coach Lovie Smith said, "and hopefully it's not that serious."

Some MRI sprains, though, could even take six to eight weeks, depending on other issues, Kharrazi said.

With a 7-5 record, though, the Bears can ill afford to lose Forte at all.

After a dominant performance against the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday Night Football, Forte has been the focal point of opposing defenses, oftentimes with a safety called upon to help slow him down.

In the three games before Sunday, Forte averaged 60 rushing yards and 18 receiving yards per game. When he left the game against the Chiefs, Forte had five carries for 12 yards.

Bears tight end Matt Spaeth lamented that he didn't block Johnson well enough on that fateful play.

"I felt horrible. He made a good play," Spaeth said of Johnson. "I missed him. I was coming around, tried hookin' him to get Matt outside, which we were supposed to do.

"But they were kind of all day jumping underneath and submarining and diving and different things all day. I don't think anybody feels worse about the Matt Forte injury than me because it was my guy."

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Forte's agent is probably on the phone right now reminding him that he needs to finish the year with both legs intact to get paid. In his place I'd tell the kid to spend a week or two moaning and groaning in the whirlpool while waiting to see what happens.

If the team demonstrates the ability to complete a forward pass again this year, then and only then consider coming back working a couple games for peanuts. A playoff check would make the off-season a little more fun.

Otherwise IR pays exactly the same as risking your career on the field for a team going nowhere.

Ummm is this the part where MJD calls out his good friend Matt Forte? Cutler left the game with the same injury last year and he made a huge stink. Well Forte didn't return so why don't one of you media types ask Matt what his buddy thinks of his injury. I also didn't see Forte running around smiling after the injury, did he have good posture? Where is the scandle of Forte quiting? It's only a grade 2, he walked off the field, he could stand and breath so he should have been fine to play. I want to see the MRI, I think Forte is lying. He quit on his team.

No I don't actually believe any of that, but I would love someone to call out MJD about Matt who is his friend.

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on December 4, 2011 6:51 PM.

Matt Forte believed to have an MCL sprain was the previous entry in this blog.

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