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Johnny Knox faces long road to recovery from back injury

Johnny Knox AP

Bears receiver Johnny Knox cracked a facet joint in his spinal column when he was bent backward awkwardly during a December game against the Seahawks, and when initial reports said he would need 3-4 months to recover, that sounded like good news compared to how ugly the injury looked.

But now comes word that the 3-4 months estimate may have been overly optimistic.

When a fan asked Knox on Twitter last week whether he thinks he can play next season, Knox didn’t answer the question directly, saying only that he wants to get to 100 percent before he thinks about that. And Michael C. Wright of ESPN.com, citing multiple unnamed sources, reports that there’s doubt about Knox’s potential availability for 2012.

According to Wright, Knox had a vertebral fusion and will have to wear a back brace for another month, and his timeline for recovery could be more than six months.

For Knox, who hinted in a reply to another fan on Twitter that the injury nearly paralyzed him, getting his health back is the most important issue. For the Bears, it may be a long time before they know whether the man who emerged as their best wide receiver last year will be back in the fold at all in 2012.

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32 Responses to “Johnny Knox faces long road to recovery from back injury”
  1. mikeschmitt1217 says: Feb 8, 2012 4:15 PM

    Wishing this guy a speedy recovery, he’s an exciting player to watch and it sucked to see him get hurt like that.

  2. rpiotr01 says: Feb 8, 2012 4:17 PM

    When I saw that hit I thought he could be dead. Hands down the ugliest hit of 2011. You always want to see these guys get healthy enough to live a normal life before even thinking about their football future.

  3. El Capitan says: Feb 8, 2012 4:21 PM

    I hope he really does get his health back to 100% before he contemplates returning to football. Not a Bear fan by a long shot but i feared the worst when seeing that live.

  4. ammarradhi says: Feb 8, 2012 4:25 PM

    Glad to hear that he is not paralyzed, that hit looked terrible. Really hope he makes it back to 100%

  5. laidlowo says: Feb 8, 2012 4:27 PM

    Get well Knox….I guess now,Bears will get Manningham from my Giants…..

  6. necrondi says: Feb 8, 2012 4:28 PM

    He may have been the Bears best WR but he had a bad year, and regressed last year. Take the year off Johnny, work on your route running and come back stronger in 2013. This is going to force the Bears to focus heavily on WR this off season, instead of patronizing it like they did last year when they brought in Roy Will to catch 70 balls and go over a thousand.

  7. Fantasy Football Legend says: Feb 8, 2012 4:29 PM

    I don’t think Knox emerged as the best Bears WR last season, I think he did it the season before. Knox is their number 1, Roy 2 and Hester 3 in my eyes. Hester is not good at all, besides punt ad kick returns.

  8. tfbuckfutter says: Feb 8, 2012 4:30 PM

    Mike Martz is openly campaigning for the position of Physical Trainer.

    He says his style of rehab is very conducive to Johnny Knox’ style of injury.

  9. tombradyswig says: Feb 8, 2012 4:31 PM

    get well Johnny!!!

  10. uschawk says: Feb 8, 2012 4:35 PM

    That’s too bad. The injury was one of the ugliest that I have seen in a while, he just about got broken in half.

    Get well Johnny Knox.

  11. bluefan204 says: Feb 8, 2012 4:51 PM

    Seeing that injury happen was terrifying. Wishing Johnny the speediest of recoveries!

  12. thom4msu says: Feb 8, 2012 4:52 PM

    I saw the replay once. I don’t care to ever see it again.

  13. doug1grohlin says: Feb 8, 2012 4:54 PM

    Fantasy Football Legend says: Feb 8, 2012 4:29 PM

    I don’t think Knox emerged as the best Bears WR last season, I think he did it the season before. Knox is their number 1, Roy 2 and Hester 3 in my eyes. Hester is not good at all, besides punt ad kick returns.
    ———————————————————————
    Forgetting Earl Bennett?

    Anyways, speedy recovery Johnny!

  14. blackqbwhiterb says: Feb 8, 2012 4:54 PM

    If they ranked such things, that’s the worst football injury I remember watching ever (although Thank God the result isn’t).
    In all sports, I think it ranks behind only the hockey guy, Milarchuck, who had a skate slit his jugular vein, and we all thought we were watching him bleed to death right on TV. Watching the Knox hit, thought he could have been killed also, honestly. Glad he’s getting better. Legs etc like Theismann or McGahee’s are one thing, but he looked like he was definitely coming away paralyzed, maybe killed by the way he was bent over. Absolutely horrifying. Hope he recovers ok!

  15. needle379 says: Feb 8, 2012 5:00 PM

    This has nothing to do with football or how well he was or is playing people, stop talking about this as a football article. This is a mans life and well being, lets all pray for Johnny Knox and wish him a healthy recover to be able to live good life w/his family

  16. lookatthefarside says: Feb 8, 2012 5:09 PM

    Here’s to a speedy recovery!

  17. rcampore says: Feb 8, 2012 5:10 PM

    I did not see the hit and from the comments above, I never want to see it. I saw that Denver guy with his leg broken the other way and I had nightmares of it for days.

    Hopefully he can get back to 100 percent because you never want to see those kind of injuries.

  18. purpleguy says: Feb 8, 2012 5:52 PM

    After watching that injury, i’m surprised it wasn’t worse. I hope he recovers fully. I suggest showing him the schedule and reconfirming that he plays my team and its lousy secondary twice next year — that ought to help the healing process.

  19. lasher1650 says: Feb 8, 2012 6:14 PM

    doug1grohlin says:
    Feb 8, 2012 4:54 PM
    Fantasy Football Legend says: Feb 8, 2012 4:29 PM

    I don’t think Knox emerged as the best Bears WR last season, I think he did it the season before. Knox is their number 1, Roy 2 and Hester 3 in my eyes. Hester is not good at all, besides punt ad kick returns.
    ———————————————————————
    Forgetting Earl Bennett?

    Anyways, speedy recovery Johnny!

    12 0 i

    Rate This
    _________________________________________________________

    When you are debating between Johnny Knox and Earl Bennett as to whom is your best WR, it is definitely time for a significant upgrade at that position for the Bears.

  20. bearsrulepackdrool says: Feb 8, 2012 6:24 PM

    laidlowo says:
    Feb 8, 2012 4:27 PM
    Get well Knox….I guess now,Bears will get Manningham from my Giants…..

    ___________________________

    I hope not.

    Knox…glorified #3
    Hester…glorified kick returner
    R. Williams…probably won’t have a job after he gets cut.
    Earl Bennett…the official #3 on our depth chart

    So yea the World Champion Giants #3 receiver would look good with the rest of the #3 and belows on this squad.

    CAN I GET A #1 RECEIVER PLEEEEEEAASSE!!

    Get well Knox. You may be a glorified #3 receiver but you’re the best we have.

  21. maximusprime107 says: Feb 8, 2012 6:43 PM

    i’m glad the injury wasn’t as serve as what the hit implied, but Knox needs to not worry about football for the time being and just worry about getting healthy

  22. trapshoot says: Feb 8, 2012 6:43 PM

    The most horrible hit I’ve ever seen. Impossible to believe he wasn’t paralyzed. His main goal needs tobe to get hea
    Thy. Football should be secondary at this time.

  23. goawayeverybody says: Feb 8, 2012 8:05 PM

    I think that was the most gruesome thing I’ve ever seen in a sporting event.

    A close second would be what happened to Eric Foster against the Buccaneers.

    In any case, get well soon Johnny Knox! You were always a beast on the field.

  24. 50milessouthofdetroit says: Feb 8, 2012 8:24 PM

    as a lions season ticket holder for years, i vividly remember johnnie morton racing to the tunnel for help when reggie brown almost died on the silverdome turf. that said, when i watched the hit on knox, i thought i was reliving that moment. i hope he can reach a full recovery and stay in the game we all love, whether on the field or off

  25. andrejohnsonforpresident says: Feb 8, 2012 8:27 PM

    Worst hit of 2011?? You kidding me?? Worst hit of all time minus the golden ages of jaw breaking. Idk who that guy was but he’s on nfl network for the most dirty player in the game, used to shoulder people in the jaw and break jaws all game.

    Either way god I hope he gets better. I almost blame the no head hits for this injury… Guys go low so often now

  26. mnfan1 says: Feb 8, 2012 11:04 PM

    Didn’t see the hit, but hope he gets better.

  27. asublimeday says: Feb 9, 2012 1:30 AM

    You’re in our prayers, Johnny. Get better, Bear down!

  28. bearsoxass says: Feb 9, 2012 3:33 PM

    I hate the bears so bad,
    but, get well soon!

  29. tone360 says: Feb 13, 2012 1:44 AM

    God Speed, “Hard” Knox!

  30. vetdana says: Feb 24, 2012 11:02 PM

    This was a very serious injury and Johnny has to decide, along with his Doctors ,whether or not he wants to step out on that field again.I would not want to re-injure that spinal column at the point of the fusion and would not risk further injury. Speedy recovery Johnny Knox !

  31. bearsfan8976 says: Apr 9, 2012 11:52 AM

    Johnny Knox is so reliable. You can tell he has passion for the game. Speedy recovery!!! I love watching him play football!

  32. bears13 says: Apr 25, 2012 3:29 PM

    Hope ur doing fine one of ur fans

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