New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul is set to return to the field in Week 9 after having his right index finger amputated. His injury and amputation were the result of a fireworks accident on the Fourth of July, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, as TMZ Sports first reported.
Pierre-Paul also reportedly suffered a fracture in his right thumb and additional fractures to his remaining fingers during the accident, according to Bleacher Report's Jason Cole.
Continue for updates.
Pierre-Paul Active for Week 9
Sunday, Nov. 8
Pierre-Paul Comments on Return
Saturday, Nov. 7
Josina Anderson of ESPN provided Pierre-Paul's take on returning to the field:
My confidence is high and can't nobody tell me different. Let me tell you, when guys say they know what pain is. I feel like nobody in here knows what real pain is like. I know what it feels like. Even if I get a nick here or there, my mindset is different about overcoming things because I'm just so happy to be playing...I'm going to be the same JPP that can run to the quarterback out there and make everybody around me better. I'm starting to do that already.
Pierre-Paul Experimenting with New Gloves
Thursday, Nov. 5
Dan Graziano of ESPN provided an image of one of the gloves Pierre-Paul is trying:
Latest on Pierre-Paul's Practice Status Ahead of Week 9
Thursday, Nov. 5
Tom Rock of Newsday added the defensive end took part in all the drills, "including grabbing and shedding blockers and picking up fumbles."
On Wednesday, Ebenezer Samuel of the New York Daily News reported that "Pierre-Paul warmed up with [the] team" with a pair of white gloves on. When position drills began, he indeed moved off to the side, working with strength and conditioning coach Jerry Palmieri. He ran several sprints, and also pushed a large wooden sled.
Pierre-Paul Comments on Availability for Week 9
Wednesday, Nov. 4
"I'm going to play on Sunday...maybe," Pierre-Paul said, per Ralph Vacchiano of the New York Daily News.
Pierre-Paul also said he would have to play with his left hand on the ground but can still play on the right or left side of the line, per Jordan Raanan of NJ.com. Even though he can't put his right hand in the dirt, JPP said he's "past the hurt" with his injured hand, per Vacchiano.
"They said I can't, but I did," Pierre-Paul added on his return to the field, per Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post. "Now it's up to me."
Pierre-Paul Discusses Hand, Fireworks Incident
Friday, Oct. 30
"Great. Great. It feels good," he said, when asked how his hand was doing, per Steve Politi of the Star-Ledger.
He briefly discussed the incident, saying, "It wasn't frightening at all. Something I do every year for the kids. ... Six, seven years now," per Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports.
"I'm fortunate to be alive," he said, per Kratch.
"I'm still Jason Pierre-Paul," the defensive end continued. "I'm ready to play football."
Coughlin Comments on Pierre-Paul's Health
Wednesday, Oct. 28
"I'm being brought along just like everyone else," Coughlin told reporters when asked about Pierre-Paul's eventual return. Coughlin added Pierre-Paul will start with the medical team and can participate in the jog-through.
Coughlin also mentioned Pierre-Paul weighed in at 268 pounds when he reported to the team. The defensive end was previously listed at 278 pounds prior to his accident.
Pierre-Paul, Giants Agree to Contract
Tuesday, Oct. 27
“We all are excited to see Jason,” general manager Jerry Reese said in the release. “He has worked very hard to get himself back into position to join the team and work toward getting on the playing field on Sundays.”
“I’m very excited to be back,” Pierre-Paul said, per the Giants. “I’m getting ready to do what I have to do. I’ve been training down in South Florida with my trainer. Every day, I got up at 7:30 and lifted weights, I’ve been doing what I have to do to stay in football shape.”
Following the accident, the team reportedly withdrew its $60 million contract offer, according to a July 6 report from Rapoport, per colleague Kevin Patra.
"Given the timing of the event and the apparent judgment displayed, the Giants do not believe a long-term offer is in the best interest of those involved at this point," Patra reported, via Rapoport.
Osi Umenyiora Comments on JPP's Status, NFL Future
Monday, Oct. 12
"He's in good spirits," Umenyiora said of Pierre-Paul, via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. "He seems happy. He's just happy he's alive. You know what I mean? [With] all the stuff that he went through."
Umenyiora also commented on the chances of his former teammate returning to the game after the incident, via Youngmisuk:
"Listen, he just needs to get healthy first," Umenyiora said. "As soon as he does then he will get out here. Obviously the team needs him. I think it is obvious for everybody to see that. We know what type of player he is."
Umenyiora said Pierre-Paul can play with a damaged hand and still be effective.
"If anybody can do it, it would be him," said Umenyiora, who now serves as an ambassador for the NFL in England after retiring from football. "He's powerful, athletic football player. I relied more on technique. He uses more athleticism. A guy like that he will be able to overcome that."
JPP Posts Workout Videos
Tuesday, Sept. 22
Pierre-Paul took to Instagram to share a video of himself on the bench press during his workout:
"Five reps," noted NBC Sports' Mike Florio after the video was posted before adding:
At the Scouting Combine in 2010, Pierre-Paul bench-pressed 225 pounds 19 times. So it's clear that he has lost some strength during the period of time that he couldn't lift.
Even now, Pierre-Paul is using a towel on top of his right hand to allow for the weight to be pushed away from his chest. Which invites speculation as to the other limitations he's facing when trying to engage in the various other exercises that a player needs to do to maintain an NFL physique.
On Sept. 15, Pierre-Paul posted a video from another training session (warning: NSFW language):
Photo of Pierre-Paul's Unbandaged Hand Emerges
Thursday, Sept. 17
The New York Daily News passed along the first photograph of Pierre-Paul's hand without a bandage:
The New York Daily News first passed along photos of Pierre-Paul with his hand wrapped heavily in bandages on July 31:
Graziano reported on Tuesday that Pierre-Paul is missing a portion of his thumb, along with his entire right index finger. Rapoport specified that the defensive end was only missing the tip of the thumb.
JPP Tweets on Recovery, Amputation and Accident
Thursday, Sept. 17
"I can't think of the last time my index finger got me a sack," Pierre-Paul tweeted Thursday morning in response to recent criticism.
"What happened to me was not a [setback]. God has greater plans for me. No man can judge me accepted [sic] God himself," Pierre-Paul said via Twitter on Aug. 23. "My bad except lost a finger LOL," he added.
Tisch: 'You’re Not Going to Be Judged, You’re Going to Be Helped'
Monday, Aug. 10
"It's been very frustrating," Giants co-owner Steve Tisch said Sunday, per Michael Eisen of Giants.com. "I’ve reached out to Jason. I’ve not heard back from Jason," Tisch added before expressing sympathy:
I’m not going to hold that against him, I understand his situation is difficult, complicated, and I’m sure very confusing to him personally. Just as John Mara expressed, Tom expressed, Jerry has expressed, (senior vice president of medical services) Ronnie (Barnes), my first priority and my first message is that I care about him as a man. I think whatever issues he has to deal with, I’m sure are complicated, frustrating and difficult. My message to him is get better, we cheer for you. Ronnie and our doctors have access to the best doctors, if not in New York City and the country, possibly in the world. He should take advantage of that. Let us see you sooner than later. You’re not going to be judged, you’re going to be helped.
JPP Talks Comeback with Defensive Line Coach Robert Nunn
Friday, Aug. 7
Hubbuch reported Nunn has been in regular contact with Pierre-Paul:
“I’ve spoken to him on the phone [and] texted him back and forth, mostly about things other than football,” Nunn said as the Giants opened their second week of training camp. “It was a tragic thing that happened, a major accident. Everybody has their beliefs on what happened what should have happened and [will] make of it what they want to. But the guy went through a tough thing. It’s a tough situation to be in.”
“We’ve talked more about where he is from a mental standpoint, texting back and forth and letting him know that we’re here for him and [that] whatever he needs, we’re here for him,” Nunn said.
“His response is: ‘Coach I’m good. I’m going to get myself right and I’ll be back.’ That’s kind of where it stands. I don’t know any more than what you guys [in the media] know from that standpoint.”
JPP, Giants Previously Broke Communication
Monday, Aug. 3
"We just want to see him, make sure he's OK. That, to me, would be the primary motivation," Giants co-owner John Mara said, per Garafolo.
Mara's latest comments appear more understanding and consoling than the remarks he made July 30. When asked about Pierre-Paul's injury at the time, Mara said, "I don't know how many fingers he has," per Schwartz. "I think we have to plan on being without him," he said, per Glauber.
Mara also added nobody from the Giants had examined Pierre-Paul yet. "We have no idea what condition he's in," according to Vacchiano.
However, Mara's final message for his defensive end was simple, per Vacchiano: "Come home. We miss you."
On July 28, Mara said it was "very disappointing to him" when Pierre-Paul refused to meet with members of the Giants brass who traveled to Florida to meet with him following the incident. Schwartz provided Mara's take on how the defender handled the situation:
I don't think JPP is receiving very good advice right now. He has told people that he's fine and he's going to be ready to play, but until we see the hand, we're just not sure. I think I may have used some language that I wouldn't like my grandchildren to hear me use. ...
I could not believe, that here we haven't even gone to training camp yet and we've lost two starters—one [left tackle Will Beatty] in the weight room and one to a fireworks accident. So it was more of a state of disbelief that I was in. I've been around a long time, seen a lot of things ... but this one was a shock.
On July 8, Pierre-Paul refused to meet with Barnes and former Giants linebacker Jessie Armstead, according Florio. Schefter reported the Giants representatives left Florida without ever speaking to the Giants star. Garafolo noted Pierre-Paul also declined the Giants' offer to provide medical assistance.
The team had been struggling to get information on Pierre-Paul's condition, per a July 7 report from Vacchiano, even going so far as to send Barnes to Florida to examine him. But Barnes had been unable to examine or meet with Pierre-Paul, according to Vacchiano.
Reese Comments on JPP's Recovery
Monday, Aug. 3
"We're not pissed off, we're not mad about it," Reese said of the overall lack of communication from Pierre-Paul, courtesy of Schwartz.
"This is a traumatic situation—it was an accident," Reese said on Aug. 2, per Bill Pennington of the New York Times, who added more from Reese:
Plenty of people have opinions about it. My heart goes out to him. For a young man to have a traumatic event like that in his life is life-changing for him. I hope for the best, and hopefully, he's healing mentally and physically and that he can be back to himself as soon as possible.
Other than that, I'm not going to say anything.
Pierre-Paul Expected to File Lawsuit Against Hospital for Medical Chart Leak
Thursday, July 9
After Schefter posted Pierre-Paul's medical chart showing the plans to amputate the Giants DE's index finger, Cole reported "Pierre-Paul is expected to file a lawsuit against the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami for leaking his medical chart to ESPN."
As a potential lawsuit looms, Raanan passed along a statement from Carlos A. Migoya, president and CEO of Jackson Health System, on the release of Pierre-Paul's medical chart:
Late Wednesday, media reports surfaced purportedly showing a Jackson Memorial Hospital patient's protected health information, suggesting it was leaked by an employee. An aggressive internal investigation looking into these allegations is underway.
If these allegations prove to be true, I know the entire Jackson family will share my anguish. Our nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals are passionate about our patients' health and well-being, and that includes the right to privacy. If we confirm Jackson employees or physicians violated a patient's legal right to privacy, they will be held accountable, up to and including possible termination. We do not tolerate violations of this kind.
In order to protect our patients' rights and private information, we enforce strict rules for those who handle patient information and continually educate all employees on privacy regulations. Those rules are constantly evolving as technology changes, but always remain focused on putting our patients first.
Cole Explains Amputation Decision, No Further Amputations Expected
Wednesday, July 8
Cole spoke to a pair of doctors, who said amputating the finger was wiser than trying to repair it.
"For the purpose of grabbing, pulling and tackling, the index finger is not as important as the [middle finger and ring finger]," one of the doctors said, via Cole. However, the doctor noted that the damage to the thumb would be even more problematic.
No further amputations are believed to be required, according to Garafolo.
As for the Giants, a team spokesman said, via Nick Powell of NJ.com, "Giants officials had no knowledge of Pierre-Paul's decision to amputate his right index finger until they saw the ESPN report."
Pierre-Paul Could Potentially Face Criminal Charges After Fireworks Incident
Tuesday, July 7
Pierre-Paul is "not out of the woods legally" as police determine where the incident occurred, according to Garafolo.
This comes after J.P. Pelzman of NJ.com reported the Coral Springs Police Department is no longer investigating Pierre-Paul's fireworks accident. Raanan previously reported Public Information Officer Capt. Brad McKeon said the defensive end may face criminal possession of fireworks, depending on the type of fireworks used.