How injuries shaped the NFL season and what can be done better next time

By The Capital Sports Report Staff

Injuries have always been a part of the NFL games. However, this season has seen an increase in the number of players being stretchered and carted off of NFL fields, as they clutch everything from a bust knee to a snapped leg.

In this article, we look at some of the worst injuries that have recently occurred in the league and understand how those injuries affected the fortunes of various NFL teams. We’ll also consider what could have been done to avoid such setbacks in the first place.

After all, the key to winning is learning from your mistakes.

Seattle Seahawks cornerback Quandre Diggs celebrates after intercepting Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz
Quandre Diggs celebrates after intercepting Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz (Photo by the Seattle Seahawks/Instagram)

Case of Joe Burrow and Overly Eager Bengals

There was huge excitement in Cincinnati after the NFL Draft. The Bengals drafted Joe Burrow, who they hope to be their franchise quarterback for the next decade to 15-years.

Related: Patriots’ Rex Burkhead had successful torn ACL surgery

The Bengals hope that they could build a dynasty around Burrow. Some sportsbooks even fancied the previously ridiculed Bengals to set a winning regular season record.

Unfortunately, no one seemed to tell head coach Zach Taylor, or anyone on his staff, that when you acquire a long-term asset, like Joe Burrow, it usually pays off to provide that player with some protection.

Instead, Bengals fans have had to watch this season as Burrow is bounced around the pocket as though he were in a pinball machine. The upshot of this has been the college all-star suffering a season-ending knee injury.

Related: Bengals’ Joe Burrow has successful reconstructive knee surgery

This has quashed any chance the Bengals had of upsetting the odds to post a respectable regular-season record in the AFC North, with the team showing on the NFL moneyline as resounding favorites to lose all their remaining regular season games. Other ailing teams should take note of this cautionary tale as they come to make their draft picks in the offseason.

It Helps If You Do Not Injure Your Own Players

One team that suffered greatly from a spate of injuries during the first weeks of the regular season were the Los Angeles Chargers.

Related: 2020 NFL Fantasy Betting: Top 10 Week 13 Running Backs To Keep An Eye Out

At the time, it was hard to understand exactly how so many players were ending up side-lined until clues began to seep into the public domain that shocked LA locals as well as football fans further afield.

The worst of these was when a story about how exactly LA quarterback Tyrod Taylor came to suffer a punctured lung.

Rather than a bone crunching sack or a dive for a 1st down doing the damage, it was revealed that the team doctor had probed a little too far with a needle, leading to the unfortunate QB having to be rushed to hospital, whose clutches he has only just escaped from to return for more punishment on the training ground and in the franchise’s medical center.

Related: JV Game: Steelers defeat Ravens in lackluster performance

Who needs enemies when you have friends like the Chargers’ backroom staff! The lessons to be learned here are obvious, with teams needing to do a better job of patching their players up than hiring folks who think needles are harmless toys.

This week, we reported that Taylor will not file a grievance against the Chargers about the incident.

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert attempts a pass against the New York Jets
Justin Herbert attempts a pass against the New York Jets (Photo by Justin Herbert/Instagram)

49ers Living Proof That Injuries Can Bring a Team to Its Knees

If there is one team struggling in the NFL standings because of spectacular injuries, it is last season’s Super Bowl finalists San Francisco 49ers.

Related: Steelers believe Bud Dupree has suffered a torn ACL

At the time of this writing, the 49ers had no less than 27 players on injured reserve, and that is not even taking into account players who opted out this season due to the coronavirus.

Things went downhill after Nick Bosa and other key players suffered injuries in Week 2. Star offensive players Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle may not play again this season.

What this shows is that injury prevention techniques and practices are not being implemented as they should be, at what is supposed to be one of the best teams in the land. Things must improve quickly if the likes of the 49ers are to get themselves back in Super Bowl contention in the near future.

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