Another Giants horrific injury. Osi Umenyiora. Plaxico Burress. Andre Brown. Jay Alford. Kenny Phillips. Domenik Hixon. Chad Jones. Will someone please make this stop?!!
Chad Jones is going to survive, the surgery went well and the doctors look like they were able to save his leg. To what extent Chad Jones has any chance of playing football again is a question we will not bother to speculate on.
The Giants have clearly been snakebit. This is the 7th catastrophic injury the team has experienced in a short period of less than 3 years. Brutal is not the word. Obviously the injuries to Burress and Jones take on a different meaning when they occur off the field. But the sting and the tragedy of watching the careers of ALL SEVEN MEN get thrown into jeopardy is gut-wrenching and horrible.
We have watched as the trials of Osi Umenyiora have become a public drama. The walkout with Sheridan, the demotion, the comments to the media. This is a player who went from getting a ring in 2007 as the only member of the team in the Pro Bowl, to a player who lost 2008 to injury and 2009 to recovery. To lose two years in your prime, to lose possibly the rest of your Pro Bowl career to injury, it is devastating.
We need not relive the implosion of Plaxico Burress. As ugly as it gets.
Oh, the promise of Andre Brown. People did not realize what a loss this man was last year. They still are unaware how much this rookie could have helped the team when the dominoes of Jacobs, Bradshaw and Ware ALL GOT HURT in front of him on the depth chart. We will never know how good he could have been, how good he may still be. We have our fingers crossed this catastrophe has not irreparably harmed his career.
Jay Alford was cited by none less than Justin Tuck as his player that was going to make the biggest splash in 2009. Then the Bears preseason game, when his leg was turned into a pretzel. Defensive Tackles take 3 years for that wine to mature. Alford was entering his third, so we had high hopes he could make that jump. And then the hopes were snuffed out. Once again, we have quiet wishes he can come back and make his presence felt on the field. We have to think that, like Umenyiora, it will take time.
The loss of Kenny Phillips was a slow motion body blow that took about ~4 weeks to get sealed. Without any depth, his loss was the #1 factor behind the 2009 debacle. Players were busy freelancing to compensate and then all of the team discipline went into the toilet.
The Domenik Hixon tragedy was, in our opinion, and certainly Antrel Rolle’s, unnecessary. His loss hurts us in many ways. This one is so fresh that talking about 2011’s return is pointless.
And the last installment, from 615AM Central Time on Friday. There is only so much loss an organization can take. That it is June is good. The Giants will forge ahead. But just as we said when Andre Brown went down, you cannot belittle the loss of this rookie. Every rookie is important. They play specials. Chad Jones was going to be featured in camp to get Hixon’s job as the returner. And if Kenny Phillips does not return meaningfully from microfracture surgery, the Giants will somehow (despite Jerry Reese’s strong efforts this go-round) be thin at Safety yet again. Jones is an athlete. Both Pete and Wonder liked him in pre-draft assessment, noting that he had Taylor Mays-type of ability. At this point we hope the man walks again and whatever he does beyond that will be gravy.
Some times it is necessary to take a step back, do a reality check and get perspective on what has happened. This organization has been through a lot the past two weeks and the past two years. All we can do is acknowledge that there has been a lot of adversity, and move forward thereafter. We sincerely wish for Hixon and Jones to have good rehabs. We wish that Brown, Alford and Phillips are able to come back and play football at the same high level they were playing before they got hurt. And we wish that no one else gets hurt, as unrealistic a request as that might be for this sport. The Giants and their players deserve a little relief from this string of misfortune.
Addendum Monday Morning: If Jones gets better, he may consider baseball over football. We are simply too early for all of this speculation. Let’s just let the guy recover first.