Thanks to Bell's informative piece, we now know that your Houston Texans are the first team in the NFL to implement "blood flow restriction" ("BFR" for short), a recovery technique created by and used by the military to treat injured soldiers. Bell writes:
Dr. Walt Lowe, head team physician for the Texans, was intrigued enough by BAMC's early results to investigate how they could apply the technique in their setting. Lowe and Texans director of sports medicine Geoff Kaplan, a dual-certified physical therapist and athletic trainer, met with Johnny Owens, physical therapist and chief of human performance optimization at the Center for the Intrepid (CFI) at BAMC (who introduced the training to the facility) to learn more about his clinical research and protocols.
Several Texans players are currently undergoing BFR training as a component of their rehabilitation, including Clowney, who is recovering from microfracture surgery on his right knee. (After initially undergoing surgery to address a lateral meniscus tear in September, persistent pain associated with an accompanying cartilage injury led to the second surgery in December.)
While it's too early in the recovery process to draw any overall conclusions, the Texans' medical staff is encouraged by what they're seeing so far.
"Players are saying they feel better and their legs are getting stronger," Kaplan said, noting that based on his own observations, the small group of players undergoing BFR training seem to be progressing more quickly than others in the past recovering from similar procedures.
I'll gladly take a shot of optimism when it comes to injury news, particularly as it pertains to a certain first overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.