FRISCO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – Dallas Cowboys center Travis Frederick announced Wednesday he was diagnosed with the auto immune disease, Guillain-Barre Syndrome.
Frederick released the following statement where he said he’s “very optimistic about my condition and the immediate future.”
“After a very extensive examination and discovery process over the past few weeks, I have been diagnosed with having Guillain Barre Syndrome which is an auto immune disease. In the last 48 hours, I have received two treatments that address my condition, and I am feeling much better from an overall strength perspective. I will continue these treatments over the next few days. I am very optimistic about my condition and the immediate future, as I have been told that the illness was detected at a fairly early stage. My doctors have told me that it is not possible to determine a time table for a return to the field right now, but I am hopeful that I will be able to play as soon as possible.
“I am deeply grateful for all of the people who have expressed concern for me throughout the past four weeks, and my teammates and the Cowboys organization have provided me and my family with tremendous support.”
Frederick, 27, was drafted 31st overall out of Wisconsin by the Cowboys in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft. He’s been chosen for the Pro Bowl four times.
The Mayo Clinic explains Gullian-Barre this way:
Guillain-Barre syndrome often begins with tingling and weakness starting in your feet and legs and spreading to your upper body and arms. In about half of people with the disorder, symptoms begin in the arms or face. As Guillain-Barre syndrome progresses, muscle weakness can evolve into paralysis.
Frederick saw a specialist in California while the Cowboys were still in training camp there because of feelings he said were similar to stingers in his neck and shoulders. When he returned to camp, he told reporters he checked out OK. He was on the sideline for the preseason game against Cincinnati on Saturday.
Coach Jason Garrett said Tuesday tests for Frederick continued with doctors in the Dallas area. Garrett declined to be more specific.
Joe Looney has been working at center in Frederick’s absence, but the Cowboys have always considered 2014 All-Pro right guard Zack Martin a possibility there. Martin will miss the rest of the preseason after hyperextending his left knee against the Bengals.
Frederick was the second of three first-round picks in a span of four years, a group that anchors what is considered one of the NFL’s best offensive lines. Left tackle Tyron Smith, the 2011 choice, has battled back issues in recent years. Frederick, Smith and 2014 pick Martin have all been named to the Pro Bowl each of the past four seasons.
Dallas is banking on a healthy offensive line in front of 2016 NFL rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott, with the Cowboys hopeful that quarterback Dak Prescott and a largely unproven group of receivers can feed off a powerful running game.
Two years ago, Frederick signed a $56 million, six-year extension that at the time made him the highest-paid center in the NFL. He’s now fourth on that list.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)