10 Worst Career-Ending Injuries
Sterling Sharpe was #84 for the Green Bay Packers from the late-80's until the mid-90's. In 1994, Sharpe suffered a damaged vertebrae during a game against the Atlanta Falcons. He would never play football again.
In 1995, baseball great Kirby Puckett played his final game as part of the Minnesota Twins. During that game, a fastball struck him in the face, causing a broken jaw. In 1996, he woke up unable to see out of his right eye and doctors told him he had glaucoma. Puckett died in 2006 of a massive stroke.
In 2000, NHL player Trent McCleary found out how dangerous a hockey puck is. During a game between the Canadiens and the Philadelphia Flyers, McCleary dropped to the ice in an attempt to stop a fast-flying puck from reaching the goal. The puck hit him in the throat, crushing his larynx. The injury ended with a collapsed lung and he will never play hockey again.
Philadelphia Athletics catcher Doc Powers played his last game on April 12, 1909. During that game, he smashed into a wall, suffering internal injuries that didn't show up for weeks after the accident. Powers passed away two weeks later from internal bleeding.
Sometimes it takes a tragic injury to remind people how dangerous football is. In 2010, college player Eric LeGrand fractured his vertebrae in an attempt to block a kick on the field. He fell and never got up. LeGrand is now a paraplegic.
Quarterbacks face danger every time they take to the field, and Joe Theismann's injury in 1985 reminded fans and players of this. During a game between the Giants and the Redskins, linebackers tackled Theismann causing a compound fracture of his lower leg, ending his career.
Darryl Stingley's promising NFL career ended in 1978 when he broke his vertebrae. He lowered his head when he was being tackled, an action which compressed his head against his opponent's shoulder pad. He became a quadriplegic due to the accident and passed away in 2007.
Reggie Brown had a short lived NFL career before an injury took him out of the game forever. Brown was a first-round draft pick for the Philadelphia Eagles and looked forward to a successful career. In 1997, during the final game of the season, Brown assisted in a tackle that caused him to suffer a spinal cord contusion. He retired after only two seasons in the NFL.
Mack Strong was a fullback for the Seattle Seahawks, and his career ended abruptly in 2007. During a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers Strong suffered a herniated disk, which if hit in the wrong way could lead to paralysis. He retired from football shortly after his injury.
Quarterback Steve Young spent a lot of his time being knocked around on the field, as all quarterbacks do. Over the years he received multiple concussions, two of which occurred during the 1999 season. Knowing he was endangering his life, he chose to end his career.