The Giants knew it wasn't good when David Wilson left practice last week with a neck injury, but the worst-possible outcome was delivered Monday afternoon. He will be shut down for the entire 2014 season, and his career is over after doctors advised him not to play again.
“Dr. Frank Cammisa Jr., our spine specialist at HSS examined David this morning and following that exam, we both sat down and shared our perspective with David,” said Dr. Russell Warren, the Giants' team physician, in a statement. “David has diffuse cervical stenosis. He had a disc removed and a fusion in January. In light of last week’s episode of symptoms, sensory and motor, Frank and I both told David he should not play football any more. We let David know that by playing, he would be putting himself at risk for more episodes like last week or perhaps something more serious.”
Wilson says he will take the advice of doctors and retire from football.
“I don’t want anybody to feel sorry for me, or pity me,” Wilson said in a statement. “I lived my dream. A lot of people only get to dream their dream. I lived that dream. Now I have a chance to dream another dream and live that, too.”
ESPN's Josina Anderson was first to report Wilson will be forced to sit out the season after consulting with doctors.
Wilson suffered a serious neck injury in 2013 and was shut down for the remainder of the season following Week 5 against the Eagles. He had offseason surgery to fix a herniated disk and fuse vertebrae in his neck. It took him all offseason to gain clearance from doctors to take part in contact during practice.
But when Wilson was cleared for practice just prior to training camp, he looked good. He took a few hard shots and bounced back to his feet, but the injury last Tuesday in camp was too severe. The Giants described it was a "burner," which is a neck injury which causes temporary loss of feeling in your arms and hands.
“Even though his career was cut short, he remains positive and believes God has a plan,” head coach Tom Coughlin said. “He has accepted this in such a way that is a great example for all of us. There is no self-pity. David is a strong person and extremely optimistic. He will meet his next challenge in life with the same enthusiasm he approached football.”
Wilson was the last pick in the first round in 2012 and had an ominous debut when he fumbled in his second NFL carry ever. He remained in Coughlin's doghouse much of the season, but showed tremendous potential late in the 2012 season. He finished with 358 yards on 71 carries for an average of 5.0 yards per carry. He had 146 yards in five games last season.
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