Third-year tight end Kevin Everett was taken off the field on a stretcher and then driven off in an ambulance at the start of the second half. After colliding helmet-to-helmet with Domenik Hixon of the Denver Broncos, Everett fell limply onto the field. He wasn’t moving and play was delayed for 15 minutes. As he was being loaded onto the ambulance, you could see that he was blinking, but there’s no way to know his state of mind. He wasn’t even able to give the obligatory thumbs up.
Everett has a cervical spine injury and had surgery for that injury Sunday evening. He’s currently in intensive care for further evaluation. Even the casual football fan knew, from watching that hit, that nothing good could come from it.
Here’s some pretty good coverage on Everett’s condition from WIVB Channel 4 here in Buffalo (video of the hit is included, it’s just not for the faint of heart). Link to Video.
This was supposed to be a big year for Everett, his breakout season. Coming from a long line of stand out tight ends from Miami, he was expected to do great things in Buffalo. He missed all of his rookie season with a knee injury and totaled just one catch for one yard in four starts last season. This was supposed to be a put-up-or-shut-up year and now he may not get his chance to show us what he’s capable of.
Sadly, my first thought after watching the hit was of Jason Street breaking his spine after trying to tackle an opposing player in the pilot of the Friday Night Lights TV show. I pray that Everett’s injury isn’t that serious.
The Bills lost a lot of players to injury in the season opener (including three starters on defense), but it’s obvious that Everett’s is the most serious.
We all remember David Pollack, the Bengals linebacker who broke his sixth cervical vertebrae last September. Pollack is on the fast track to recovery and may even be able to play next season. So there’s hope that these things can work out for the best.
Get well soon, Kevin. We’re all pulling for you.