D.J. Fluker Injury: Updates on Chargers OG's Eye and Recovery

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist

San Diego Chargers offensive guard D.J. Fluker (76) reacts to fans before an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders Sunday, Oct. 25, 2015, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
Denis Poroy/Associated Press

San Diego Chargers offensive lineman D.J. Fluker was unable to see out of one eye after he was bit in the eye by a bug in Week 9 against the Tennessee Titans. He didn't miss game time and is ready to return.

Continue for updates.


Fluker Active vs. Dolphins

Sunday, Nov. 13

The Chargers announced Fluker is available to play against Miami in Week 10.


Latest on Fluker's Practice Status 

Friday, Nov. 11

Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Fluker practiced with a visor this week.


Picture of Fluker's Eye Released

Monday, Nov. 7


Fluker Comments on Infection

Monday, Nov. 7

"I just did what I could do," Fluker said, per Gehlken. "It hurts. I was in there every play, so I just tried to fight through it. My O-line gave me confidence. My footwork kept me where I need to be. Had some ups and downs, but I just kept fighting." 

Gehlken continued:

Fluker dealt with drainage in his eye.

He characterized his vision during the game as "terrible," adding a chuckle.

"I tried to close my eye and play," Fluker said. "I'm kind of looking out of my right eye a little bit, what I could see, but that was kind of it. … Footwork and hands. Footwork and knowing where to be at the right time. That’s all it was."


Chargers Need Fluker Healthy for Playoff Push

The Chargers selected Fluker 11th overall in the 2013 draft to help what was one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL. Football Outsiders ranked San Diego 23rd in run blocking and 32nd in pass protection the season before. Prior to Week 9, Football Outsiders ranked San Diego 23rd in run blocking and 26th in pass protection.

The 25-year-old arguably hasn't lived up to his draft status, though, and the Chargers moved him from right tackle to right guard in 2015. Fluker struggled with the transition. According to the Football Database, he picked up 11 penalties, tied for seventh-highest in the league.

In June, Fluker discussed how making the transition proved difficult early in the year, per Ricky Henne of the Chargers' official site:

I got all those penalties because I just wasn't calm. And that is because I was more uncomfortable than I even realize. I got a little anxiety. As the year went on I got calmer, and I did eliminate some of those penalties. Being inside isn't bad, but it took me a while to get used to it. More than I realized. Things happen a whole lot faster, but I just hung in there. Now it is slowing down. Pass protection is actually easier on the inside.

If Fluker is forced to miss game time in the future, the Chargers will likely turn to undrafted rookie Spencer Pulley. Pulley filled in for Fluker during the preseason. 

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