Chad Pennington can't catch a break.
The former New York Jet and current Miami Dolphin quarterback, whose career has been riddled with injuries, has found himself hurt once again.
According to ESPN's Tim Graham, the Dolphin QB tore his ACL playing a pick-up basketball game. Tom Condon, Pennington's agent, says surgery will begin April 7th under Dr. James Andrews. At this time, it is unknown which knee is injured.
Chalk this up as another injury to the 34-year-old's growing ailment list.
In 2003, Pennington's left hand was fracture-dislocated during the pre-season, causing him to miss the first six games of the season. He injured his rotator cuff in 2004, missing three games. He underwent surgery in 2005 on his right shoulder. It was later known that he had a severely torn rotator cuff and a bone spur in the right shoulder. He tore the rotator cuff again later in the year.
The 2006 season was injury-free for Pennington, even earning him Comeback Player of the Year honors.
2007, on the other hand, wasn't so kind. He sprained his ankle in the first game of the season, keeping him out of next week's contest. After healing, he had a disastrous season, leading the Jets to a 1-7 start. He was benched for Kellen Clemens, yet made reappearances throughout the season. He finished 2007 with 10 touchdowns and 9 interceptions.
Pennington was cut by New York to be signed by Miami in 2008. He once again won Comeback Player of the Year honors for leading the Dolphins to the playoffs. Yet again, the year after winning the award was one to forget. He was injured in the shoulder again, after having two surgeries on it previously. He opted for a third, and wouldn't return in 2009.
Pennington stepped onto the field for two plays in 2010. Then he, you guessed it, got injured. In the November 14th game against the Tennessee Titans, Pennington was slated to start. On the second play, he severely injured his shoulder in what looked to be a potential career-ending injury. He announced he was planning on making a comeback for the 2011 campaign prior to the new ACL tear.
Where does Pennington go now?
Sadly, it might be time to hang up the shoulder pads. Pennington was a decent quarterback when he was fully healthy, but hasn't been a first string QB since getting injured in 2009. The status on his shoulder is unknown, but there is no way he is one hundred percent. Should he return, what's to stop another injury from recurring, potentially damaging him permanently?
Pennington holds the record for the highest completion percentage in a career—a pretty impressive feat until the injuries are taken into consideration. It's not to hard to have a high completion percentage when on the DL every other year.
I don't know what the record is for most injuries in a career, but Pennington is getting up there.
And that's an accomplishment nobody wants.