Are You Ready For Some Football Injuries?
The most bizarre injuries in NFL history.
Written by Filed under Sports
With the football season well underway, all NFL teams are dealing with their fair share of physical trauma. Most of the injuries are of the garden variety—sprained ankles, broken bones and bruised egos, for example. But every so often an unsuspecting NFL player or coach is knocked out of action in truly curious fashion. With this in mind, Failure magazine has assembled a collection of some of the strangest injuries in football history. In the interest of decency, the list excludes motor vehicle accidents, gunshot wounds and drug overdoses.
It’s All Fun and Games Until Somebody Gets Hurt
During the first quarter of a game against the New York Giants in December, 2001, Arizona Cardinals placekicker Martin Gramatica [above] jumped high in the air in celebration after converting a 42-yard field goal. He landed awkwardly, however, and tore the anterior cruciate ligament and medial meniscus in his right knee, an injury that required major reconstructive surgery.
Kicker Gets the Ax
On October 9, 2003, Jacksonville Jaguars punter Chris Hanson gashed his right leg with an ax while chopping wood in the team’s locker room. Believe it or not, the wood and the ax had been placed in the room at the behest of head coach Jack Del Rio, who was using the mantra “keep chopping wood” to inspire his players after a 0-3 start. Hanson required emergency surgery that ended his season. But this wasn’t the first time Hanson suffered an odd off-the-field injury. In June of 2002, Hanson, his wife, and former Jaguars placekicker Jaret Holmes were all severely burned at Hanson’s house when a fondue pot overturned.
On December 19, 1999, Orlando Brown, a six-foot-seven, 360-pound offensive lineman for the Cleveland Browns went down in a heap after being hit in the face with a penalty flag—then abruptly got up and shoved diminutive referee Jeff Triplette, who had thrown the flag. At the time, the league’s yellow penalty hankies were weighted with popcorn kernels, and the massive lineman suffered loss of vision and damage to his right eye. Brown went on to sue the NFL and missed three full seasons before making a comeback with the Baltimore Ravens in 2003. The injury prompted the league to require all penalty flags to be weighted with sand.