Tommy Rees Injury: Updates on Notre Dame QB's Neck, Likely Return Date
Notre Dame quarterback Tommy Rees left Saturday's game against USC and is currently being evaluated for a concussion after getting hit hard on a sack in the third quarter.
Rees was injured on a hit by linebacker Lamar Dawson. The Irish signal-caller dropped back and unsuccessfully tried to evade Dawson, who wrapped Rees up around the neck area and drove the back of his head and neck into the Notre Dame Stadium turf.
The team's medical staff evaluated Rees for a couple of minutes on the field, but he left under his own power, per Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune:
Tommy Rees walking off the field under his own power with a phalanx of #NotreDame medical staff. Head is down on sideline.— Brian Hamilton (@ChiTribHamilton) October 20, 2013
From Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune:
#NotreDame HC Brian Kelly on Tommy Rees: "I don’t think there's any hesitancy to play somebody when they're cleared so early in the week."— Brian Hamilton (@ChiTribHamilton) October 22, 2013
#NotreDame QB Tommy Rees cleared to practice today. Irish HC Brian Kelly basically says that means he starts vs. Air Force.— Brian Hamilton (@ChiTribHamilton) October 22, 2013
From ESPN's Matt Fortuna:
#NotreDame HC Brian Kelly: QB Tommy Rees is day-to-day with a neck injury, was feeling better this morning.— Matt Fortuna (@Matt_Fortuna) October 20, 2013
Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune followed:
#NotreDame HC Brian Kelly on QB Tommy Rees' availability for Tuesday practice: "We're expecting that he can."— Brian Hamilton (@ChiTribHamilton) October 20, 2013
From CSNChicago's JJ Stankevitz:
Brian Kelly: Tommy Rees had a neck strain. Was really sore.— JJ Stankevitz (@JJStankevitz) October 20, 2013
From Notre Dame on NBC:
Tommy Rees is out for the remainder of the game— Notre Dame on NBC (@NDonNBC) October 20, 2013
Rees was then taken to the sideline, where he underwent further observation, before being sent to the locker room. Though it's yet to be confirmed by the team, it looked like doctors were administering sideline concussion tests:
Tommy Rees on his feet on #NotreDame sideline and seemingly being evaluated for concussion, etc.— Brian Hamilton (@ChiTribHamilton) October 20, 2013
Notre Dame was leading 14-10 at the time of the injury, thanks to two Rees touchdown passes. He connected with Troy Niklas from seven yards out in the first quarter and T.J. Jones on an 11-yard pass in the second quarter. If Rees is held out for the remainder of the game, he will finish with 166 yards on 14-of-21 passing.
Andrew Hendrix replaced Rees and will likely serve as the Irish's top quarterback for the time being. The senior signal-caller has thrown the ball just six times all season, completing one for nine yards.
The Irish were 4-2 heading into this week's game and were relying on Rees to catalyze a win over the Trojans. Without him, the unproven Hendrix will finally get his chance to shine.
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