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Lofton W/ The Saints

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Still waiting on evidence of Lofton's leadership besides what you saw with your own eyes.

DECEMBER 1, 2011

Turf toe like Ravens star Ray Lewis' can be serious

ray%20lewis%2052.jpgRay Lewis, the Raven’s linebacker, has already missed two games and hasn’t been coming to practice because of a hurt toe.

While it may be hard to believe a toe injury could sideline such a player, doctors say “turf toe” can end careers.

It’s called turf toe because it’s associated with American football players who get hurt on artificial turf. Often a player has his foot planted and another player lands on the back of his calf, driving the toe to hyper-extend.

Dr. Rebecca Cerrato, a surgeon in the Institute for Foot and Ankle Reconstruction at Mercy Medical Center, said the degree of injury matters. Turf toe is basically a sprain of the ligaments that line the bottom of the big toe joint and it’s graded like any other sprain.

Grade 1 is when the ligaments are partially stretched and it’s considered mild. Grade 2 is a partial tear but not fully ruptured. Grade 3 is usually a complete rupture and maybe some breaks in the little bones in the area.

“The grade has a lot to do with how quickly they can come back,” said Cerrato, adding the injury is typically diagnosed with an X-ray.

Players with a grade 1 sprain can often return by the end of the game if they have no pain. The vast majority with grade 2 sprains are out for weeks as the swelling and pain subside. The toes need to be without pain and have a range of motion. They are often protected with tape and shoes that don’t allow the toe to lift up, Cerrato said.

Grade 3 injuries often need surgery. They are season-ending and can affect a career, said Cerrato, who has not treated Lewis and does not know the extent of his injury. Though, she said, since he’s been out two weeks already, it’s not likely a mild injury.

“The reason it’s debilitating is because an athlete needs to accelerate and change directions quickly, which requires pushing off of the toe,” she said. “That is definitely extremely difficult and painful.”

Athletes who try and play through the pain can more severely injure themselves and develop chronic long-standing problems with the joint, she said.

Athletes that want to avoid turf toe should avoid hard, inflexible artificial turf – which isn’t always an option. Cleats with stiff soles may also help.

Baltimore Sun photo/Karl Merton Ferron

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Team owner Bud Adams told the magazine: "[McNair] doesn't know what pain is. He's a warrior."

McNair's rise to prominence has not come without a great deal of pain. During the 1999 season, McNair had midseason surgery on a ruptured disk in his lower back, then shocked football fans by returning to led his team through the playoffs. McNair's back pain had been so severe that season that he could not sit for more than 15 minutes at a time, yet he played like a champion in games. Coach Jeff Fisher told Sports Illustrated for Kids that during the 2001 season, "We literally had to help him off the plane when we landed because of his lower back and two or three other [injuries]. Twenty-four hours later, we're beating Oakland, with Steve running around making plays. That's how he is." McNair overcame great pain again in 2002, when turf toe, strained rib cartilage, and an injured thumb kept him from practicing throughout November and December, though he player in games. Michael Silver wrote in Sports Illustrated that "the mild-mannered Mississippian is becoming a mythical figure in a sport in which the athletes pride themselves on playing hurt," but McNair's wife Mechelle offered a softer image when she explained "he's a big baby at home.… He'll be limping, grimacing, complaining all week, saying there's no way he'll play, and then I'll see him on Sunday running around like nothing's wrong." Coach Jeff Fisher told Football Digest, "Steve is the toughest player I have ever coached."

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Lofton & Ryan were both leaders vel...The last few pages demonstrates how silly you are vel ...I know Ryan is a leader just like I knew Lofton is a leader

You can point to whatever you want...Mike Smith said when Lofton left a leadership void needed to be filled...We might not like how Lofton went to the hated Saints but dont discredit his character or his leadership ..He fought through injuries and was a consistent player on the field ...sucks to see him go to the Saints

Edited by HaynesnRison
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I hate to say it but Lofton looked pretty good last night

True story. Yet all of Lofton's jlted haters say he sucked monkey balls last night. Fkn denial at best.

Now Vel is trying to deflect the whole thing to some busllsht subjective leadership issue, when he knows himself that Lofton was the undisputed leader of the defense by the coaches, the front office, the players, courting agents, media and obviously, the Aints who stuck one to us.

I have seen Lofton in leadership roles with my own two eyes. In OTAs, mini camps, camps, preseasons, and when bullets fly. Both on the field and on the bench.

These clowns even said Lofton would be a two down backer in Spag's defense, yet he seems to be playing every down and producing.

The only player that can save Dimi from yet another major gaffe on this front is Dent. Come on Dent, save us from even more Dimitroffication.

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