Originally written on Fox Sports  |  Last updated 11/9/14

AVONDALE, AZ - NOVEMBER 13: Denny Hamlin (L), driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, talks with teammate Joey Logano (R), driver of the #20 Home Depot Toyota, during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Checker O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 13, 2009 in Avondale, AZ. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
After missing the last four races with injuries suffered in a horrific crash, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star Denny Hamlin has been cleared to return to "on-track activities," Joe Gibbs Racing announced on Thursday. Hamlin, who sustained a compression fracture of a vertebra in his lower back in a last-lap accident with Joey Logano on March 24 at Fontana, has said that despite falling in the standings (he is currently 28th in points), he intends to compete for one of the two wild-card spots to get into the Chase. The two drivers sitting 11th to 20th with the most wins qualify for the Chase. Brian Vickers has been driving the No. 11 FedEx Toyota in Hamlin's absence, and it is believed he will be in the driver's seat again this weekend at Talladega if Hamlin is unable to go. As for Hamlin's status for the actual race on Sunday, JGR said that remains unsettled. "Exact plans for this weekend will be determined by the team at Talladega," the team said in a statement.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Lovie Smith denies Bucs tanked to secure #1 pick in 2015 Draft

Report: Jets will fire Rex Ryan, GM John Idzik on Monday

Braxton Miller has 'expressed interest' in Duke transfer?

Jim Harbaugh, 49ers mutually part ways

Mike Wallace benched for disciplinary reasons

Browns owner sends stern message to Johnny Manziel

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ray Allen is leaning toward retirement

Ravens clinch playoff spot

DeMarco Murray, Dez Bryant set Cowboys records in win

Report: Browns feel Josh Gordon 'has to go'

Jets contacted Rex Ryan's agent about replacements for him

Justin Gilbert inactive after being late to team meeting

10 takeaways from NFL Week 17

WATCH: Mike Tomlin goes after Reggie Nelson after game

WATCH: Ndamukong Suh steps on Aaron Rodgers

Nation's top recruit says he won't follow Jim Harbaugh

Eric Decker's wife was concerned about hubby's groin

WATCH: Lamar Miller has longest run in Dolphins history

WATCH: Pats fans serenade Pete Frates with 'Happy Birthday'

Harbaugh rumors affecting Mich. basketball ticket prices?

WATCH: Dez Bryant burns Redskins defender for TD

Detroit bar offering free food, booze if Lions beat Packers

Jameis Winston: I would throw in Richard Sherman's direction

WATCH: Nebraska safety pukes on field, keeps playing

NASCAR News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

WATCH: Suh steps on Aaron Rodgers

Browns owner sends message to Manziel

Ray Allen leaning toward retirement?

Ravens clinch playoff spot

Murray, Bryant set team records

Pats fans serenade Pete Frates

Browns to part ways with Josh Gordon?

Manziel was late after throwing party?

Amari Cooper not a fan of New Orleans

Harbaugh to Mich. is done deal

WATCH: Jennifer Lawrence supports Louisville with chant

Did Bielema do ‘Horns Down’?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.