The NFL’s injury epidemic began even before any preseason games were played, with Sean Lee and Kiko Alonso going down.
Since then, big-name players (RG3, Robert Mathis, Knowshon Moreno, Sam Bradford, B.J. Raji, DeAngelo Hall, Chris Long, Ike Taylor) have been sidelined, and entire units such as Atlanta and Philadelphia’s offensive lines and Carolina’s backfield have been ravaged.
What gives? ACLs, Achilles tendons and shoulders, among other things.
Consider what has happened to the Vikings, who lost quarterback Matt Cassel (broken foot), and right guard Brandon Fusco (torn pectoral muscle) for the season. Tight end Kyle Rudolph (sports hernia surgery) will miss about six weeks.
That almost makes linebacker Chad Greenway’s hand and rib problems from which he will soon return seem tame.
“I never envisioned that, but it’s a part of football,” Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said after all of those injuries occurred in one game. “Last year in Cincinnati we lost our best defensive tackle, our best corner, one of our best linebackers, a very good defensive end. Things happen in the NFL, so this is a survival of the fittest game, it’s always a marathon.”