Three serious leg injuries in four NFL seasons.
That’s the luck that Bills center Eric Wood has had during his brief professional career. When he suffered his latest injury against the Jaguars, it led to an article questioning if Wood is, in fact, injury prone.
When the injury was first announced by the team three weeks ago, many expected him to miss the remainder of the season.
Not so fast my friend.
In what brought about a sense of utter bewilderment to a lot of people, including myself, Wood has said that he’s looking to come back and play this week when the team travels to Miami.
It just doesn’t make any sense.
It’s another lost season with no chance of the playoffs and he is coming off yet another serious knee injury, yet, for whatever reason, he wants to play in Buffalo’s final two games?
Now, I completely get the loyalty and dedication to his team argument. He wants to prove that he’s going to be tough and fight for his teammates even when the games don’t mean much. However, how much of it is being dedicated and tough, and how much of it is just being stupid?
He’s coming off of a knee injury that, while it could have been much worse, is still serious. Sure, it didn’t require surgery this time, but what if he comes back this week and on the very first play he re-injures it and has to go under the knife? Would coming back have been worth it? I doubt it.
Then again, at least he wants to come back from injury to play the sport he is under contract to play, and not go out and bowl while rehabbing an injured knee.
This is one of those times when making a “me first” decision might not be the worst idea. In fact, it’s probably for the best. Why doesn’t Wood do what’s best for Wood, and just sit out. Use the extra two weeks to heal the knee, and not put unnecessary strain on it.
The man is the anchor of the offensive line. It can be argued that, when healthy, he is the best lineman this team has had in the past decade. Which, I know, may not be saying much due to how bad the line has been in years past, but that’s beside the point.
The fact of the matter is, the team is 5-9 and will probably finish 5-11 with or without Wood in the lineup.
Hell, if anything else, Wood not playing will allow the team to continue to evaluate if any of the new fill-in linemen are even any good. They found gems in Kraig Urbik and Erik Pears when they were picked off the scrap pile so who knows, it might just happen again.
Wood just needs to put his feet up on the couch, relax, have a few drinks, and just watch what real football teams look like. Of course, he’s been able to do that every January for the last four years so maybe having an extra two weeks to do so may not be the best thing for his psyche.
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