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Travis Frederick Timeline: Complete breakdown of how a “stinger” turned into Guillain Barre Syndrome

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The last week has been full of ups and downs.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Minnesota Vikings Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys fans all over the world found out on Wednesday evening that all-pro center Travis Frederick was diagnosed with Guillain Barre Syndrome, a rare auto-immune disease.

The diagnosis is the latest development in the series of what began as a “stinger” for Frederick just over a week ago when the team was still in Oxnard for training camp. Inside of the last 10 days they’ve done additional tests, gone back to Frisco, offered opinions and predictions, and a lot in between.

Let’s take a look at exactly what happened throughout this Travis Frederick saga in an effort to see what was learned and when it was.


August 15th: Garrett addresses stinger, Frederick goes to LA for outside opinion

Jason Garrett was asked during his daily press conference last Wednesday about the status of what was being listed as a “stinger” for Frederick. He noted that it was something Frederick had been dealing with, that it wasn’t something he had experienced before, and that they were monitoring it closely.

August 15th (later in the day): Frederick says he’s fine and all he needs is rest

Cowboys practice last Wednesday was obviously a big one concerning the not-practicing Travis Frederick. When it was over and players met with the media Frederick discussed the results of his visit with the doctor in Los Angeles, noting that he was fine and simply needed to rest.

August 18th: Cowboys vs. Bengals, Travis Frederick doesn’t play

This wasn’t shocking considering what had happened over the course of the week with Frederick. At the time it felt like the Cowboys simply dodged a bullet and weren’t going to tempt fate about it.

August 20th: Travis Frederick seeks additional medical opinions

Five days after word of Frederick’s “stinger” first emerged and when he saw a specialist in Los Angeles that told him all he needed was rest, Frederick decided to seek even more expertise.

It was also on this particular Monday that the Fort Worth Star-Telegram floated the idea that Frederick could miss the season opener against the Carolina Panthers. This understandably sent people into a bit of a tizzy, especially considering the positive results from just a few days prior.

August 21st: Jerry Jones says Frederick received good news on the 20th and that he expects him to play in Week 1

Just one day after it was announced that Travis Frederick was seeking additional medical opinions regarding his “stinger”, Jerry Jones put an end to whatever worry Cowboys fans had with a proclamation on 105.3 The Fan. He said Frederick received good news and that he expected to see him lining up at center in the season opener.

It was shortly after Jerry’s appearance on 105.3 that the Dallas Morning News reported surgery hadn’t been ruled out for Frederick. This was, and technically is still, technically true, but it seemed to contradict Jerry’s optimistic approach from just before. It also relied more on the idea that surgery is almost never ruled out when a medical issues hasn’t been nailed down with an exact diagnosis instead of anything particular to Frederick’s situation.

August 21st (later in the day): Jason Garrett declines further comment

During his daily press conference Jason Garrett was asked about Frederick and the idea of surgery still being in play for him. Garrett declined to go anywhere with the question noting that it was “hard for [him] to say” whether surgery was on the table, continually leaving things at the idea that they were evaluating Frederick.

August 22nd: Travis Frederick announces he has Guillain Barre Syndrome

As you know it was on Wednesday evening that Travis made his statement about GBS, almost exactly one week after meeting with the media in Oxnard to tell them that his visit went well and that all he needed was rest. A lot can change in seven days.


It’s both unbelievable and part of the unpredictability of medicine and the human anatomy that so much changed with Travis Frederick over the course of a week, including how Cowboys brass felt about the state of his health.

Obviously there were different medical opinions on hand that hypothesized different things considering one specialist recommended rest while another recognized an incredibly rare auto-immune disease.

For now all we can do is do our best to learn about GBS (this is a great start) and send positive thoughts towards Travis Frederick. He’s everything that’s right about football, the Dallas Cowboys, and people in general.