Before the 2012 NFL season began, the Detroit Lions appeared to be one of the most promising young teams in the NFL. The Lions had finally ended the playoff drought a season earlier and were seemingly on the right track in terms of becoming a force in the NFC for years to come.
Unfortunately, Detroit slipped back into mediocrity in 2012 by missing the playoffs with an ugly 4-12 record and leaving a lot of questions on whether or not this team could bounce back in 2013.
One of the main reasons for the Lions’ struggles over the past year or so has been the absence of running back Jahvid Best. With Best on the field, the Lions are a much more dynamic football team on offense with a solid passing game as well as rushing attack.
Despite solid rookie season and starting off 2011 on the right foot, Best hasn’t been able to get back on the field due to a concussion and didn’t play a single game in 2012 as a result.
The real question moving forward is whether or not Best still has a future in the NFL and that appears to still be up for debate moving forward. Best still has yet to be cleared for action and the consensus seems to be that he’ll never play again via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press:
Best isn’t expected to play football again after doctors refused to clear him this season following a pair of concussions in 2011.
The potential loss of Best is another disappointing turn for the Lions franchise with such a promising future ahead for the back and the team. Detroit did receive somewhat of a boost out of the backfield this season with Mikel Leshoure, but questions remain about his long-term health with a torn Achilles tendon injury before his rookie season.
In 22 games played for the Lions, Best rushed for 945 yards and six touchdowns. Best was also a force as a receiver with 85 catches for 774 yards and three touchdowns.