The 10 Most Unfortunate Offseason Injuries in NFL History
Terrell Suggs tore his Achilles last week in a basketball game. The reigning Defensive Player of the Year for the Baltimore Ravens is likely out for a large chunk, if not all, of the 2012 season.
This got me thinking about the most freakish offseason injuries that have happened in the history of the National Football League.
Of course this is limited in scope, so you will not be reading about Monta Ellis, of NBA fame, injuring himself in a moped accident, but there are plenty reserved for the NFL.
Let's take a look.
Limas Sweed Tears Up Achilles
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Limas Sweed was a second-round pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2008 NFL draft after an extremely productive career at Texas.
After two unproductive seasons that saw Sweed record a total of seven receptions, he tore his left Achilles tendon in mini-camp. He never suited up for the Steelers again and was released in September of 2011.
While many people will proclaim Sweed a major bust due to his ineffective first two years in the league, this injury definitely did not help his cause.
Big Ben Crashes Hig Hog
We have all heard about multiple off-field incidents as it relates to Ben Roethlisberger. By now his antics have hit "legendary" levels.
Back in June of 2006, right before "Big Ben's" third season in the league, he got into a serious motorcycle accident in Pittsburgh and was lucky to survive.
"He suffered multiple facial fractures," Pituch said at a news conference. "All of the fractures were successfully repaired. His brain, spine, chest and abdomen appear to be without serious injury. And there are no other confirmed injuries at this time."
Roethlisberger was later cited for not wearing a helmet, which led to the most serious head injuries.
LaRon Landry Paintball Accident
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Immediately after being drafted, LaRon Landry suffered a semi serious injury during a paintball game with fellow teammates.
What makes this worst is the fact that it was an organized team activity in Redskins' mini-camp that spring.
In an attempt to build camaraderie, each position group engaged in some form of team-building activity, Gibbs said. The defensive backs played paintball.
This was just a sign of things to come for the talented safety as Landry has dealt with a myriad of injuries throughout his five-year NFL career.
Brandon Marshall Slips on McDonald's Wrapper...or Not
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After all, one wouldn't be complete if he were actually omitted.
Reports surfaced a few years back that Marshall had hurt himself when he slipped on a McDonald's wrapper. As curious as the situation seemed to be at the time, no one was going to question the validity of the story.
Seriously, this happens all the time. Right?
As it turns out, Marshall made up the story in order to cover for a more embarrassing reality. In a wrestling match with a family member the wide receiver "severed an artery, a vein, and a nerve in his forearm along with tendons to five muscles" after slamming his arm into the television.
No, you can't make stuff like this up. Didn't most of us stop engaging in such antics during out adolescence? As it was, Marshall didn't miss extensive time due to the "injuries."
It just added another page to the quirky book that is Marshall's NFL career.
Joey Porter Shot in the Back End
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Joey Porter is no stranger to issues off the football field. This is a player that has been arrested for a DUI and assault on a police officer.
Nearly a decade ago, when Porter was in the prime of his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the linebacker was shot inside a Denver sports bar.
What makes this specific situation so unfortunate is the fact that Porter didn't put himself in a situation that should have led to being shot. Reports indicated that he was just an "innocent bystander."
The good news here is that Porter was shot in the butt and suffered "minor" injuries. In all, five people were injured and one man was killed in the incident.
Terrance Knighton Gets Popped with Vodka Bottle
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One of my most glaring memories from my teenage years was seeing my sister's boyfriend get hit over the head with a 40 ounce bottle of Olde English Malt Liquor during a spat with a next door neighbor.
Using alcohol bottles as a weapon. That has to be the favorite past-time of bar-hopping thugs everywhere, right?
Well, Terrance Knighton found this out first-hand.
The Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle was struck in the head by a bottle of Ciroc vodka at the Pure Nightclub early last month. Reports indicate that he did not initiate the fight, but sustained an eye injury in the incident.
Details are still a little shady right now, but it did require some sort of surgery. There is no word on how this might affect his ability to perform in 2012.
Terrell Suggs Learns That Basketball Can Be Dangerous
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It is hard to imagine one single defensive player that is more important to his team than Terrell Suggs is to the Baltimore Ravens.
After all, he did win the Defensive Player of the Year award for the 2011 season after accumulating a career-high 14 sacks and seven forced fumbles.
Suggs tore his Achilles' tendon in a pick-up basketball game last week and will miss a large majority of 2012, if not the entire year.
This isn't just a tremendous blow to one of the best defenses in the NFL. It could cause Suggs to see his production dwindle upon returning. The five-time Pro Bowl performer will be 30 when he comes back from the devastating injury, so there is no telling his ability to return 100 percent.
LeCharles Bentley Tears Up Knee
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This is when a franchise fully starts to understand that luck isn't on their side. Back in 2006, the Cleveland Browns signed two-time Pro Bowl center LeCharles Bentley to a six-year, $36 million contract.
He never played a snap for the team.
On the very first play of training camp practice Bentley blew out his knee. A career that began with so much promise came to an end on that July day.
The former second-round pick from Ohio State never played another game in the National Football League.
Sergio Kindle Fractures His Skull
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The Baltimore Ravens made Sergio Kindle a second-round pick in the 2010 NFL draft in hopes that he would be a great complement to Terrell Suggs at the linebacker position.
The former Texas standout appeared ready to take on the NFL with a full head of steam. However, everything came crashing down on the talented player immediately after being drafted.
Kindle fell down two flights of stairs, cracking his head open in the process. The unfortunate event occurred just three months after the Ravens selected him.
Kindle missed the entire 2010 season and has only played in two games over the course of this first couple years in the NFL. There is no telling if this injury has caused a lack of production, but you can connect the dots here.
Coincidentally, the aforementioned injury to Suggs could give Kindle an opportunity to earn more playing time in 2012.
Chad Jones Survives Scary Car Accident
If you don't feel bad for Chad Jones here, I think it is entirely possible that you need to do some deep soul searching.
The former Louisiana State star was drafted by the New York Giants in the third round of the 2010 draft. He was expected to challenge for a starting safety spot right out of the gate.
Just a couple months after his dream came true Jones suffered major injuries in a single car accident in New Orleans. He came out of the ordeal with a broken tibia and fibula.
Needless to say, Jones wasn't able to suit up for the Giants as a rookie in 2010 and has yet to see action in a NFL game due to these injuries.
However, Mike Garafolo over at The Star-Ledger is reporting that Jones is taking part in offseason activities with the Giants.
This would be one great comeback.