Shaun Suisham calls Hall of Fame Game injury “catastrophic”

AP

When Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham suffered a knee injury in last year’s Hall of Fame Game, attention immediately turned to the turf at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton, Ohio. Now that Suisham has been released by the Steelers, more questions should be raised about that turf.

Suisham released a statement after the Steelers cut him suggesting that the injury will prove to be career-ending.

“Unfortunately, the injury I sustained in the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game last preseason was catastrophic and has proven to be critical to continuing to my career. My journey in the NFL has come to a crossroads,” Suisham wrote. “I will mis the challenge of game day and the preparation that is required. Change is hard, but I’m comfortable with where I am in life as a husband and father.”

Although Suisham did not actually say he’s retiring, the statement came across as a retirement announcement. Suisham did not say whether he plans to take legal action against the Steelers, the NFL or the Hall of Fame in order to recoup the millions of dollars of lost future income that a forced retirement will cost him.

Whether Suisham sues or not, it’s incumbent on the NFL to ensure that every stadium where football is played — the 31 home stadiums as well as stadiums that host preseason games, International Series games and the Pro Bowl — is safe. If the Hall of Fame Stadium can’t install turf that’s up to the standards that NFL players demand, then the Hall of Fame Stadium shouldn’t host NFL games.

26 responses to “Shaun Suisham calls Hall of Fame Game injury “catastrophic”

  1. Two things here. One- Suisham should have been smart enough to not make a tackle in the pre-season. Tw0- Mike Tomlin should have told him not to make any tackles period. It doesn’t seem to hard considering these guys make tons of money in the NFL. Bonehead decision by both guys who cost suisham his career.

  2. I’m a little surprised the lawerly folks at PFT would suggest a lawsuit over this. It’s seems to me, the layman, as a loser of a case. Suisham, hasn’t made any efforts that I’m aware of to catch on with another team. How can he sue for lost future earnings if he doesn’t even tryout for another team?

  3. If the Bears Wendell Davis never received compensation for his horrific double knee blowout at the Vet then nobody deserves anything.

    All Davis tried to do is stop to position himself to catch a deep ball from Jim Harbaugh. He stops and falls to the turf…both knees shot just trying to stop and make a play. If any play in the history of the NFL was field related that was it…or was it the shoes…his genetics? I guess that’s it…how can you ever prove what was the culprit was? You can see it on YouTube. You can hear Dan Fouts say he’d never seen a WR injured in such a manner.

  4. It is really hard to see Suisham’s career (and knee) get smoked on a freaking MEANINGLESS exhibition game.

    Suish was a strong clutch kicker who, and a fantastic castoff from the Redskins. Though he didn’t boom his kickoffs deep, he was nails — and the first placekicker to consistently own Heinz Field. Only Boswell, has fared well there.

    Not only that, Suish nutted up making tackles on players who were much bigger and stronger.

    Finally, Suish was also a great teammate and representative of the Steelers.

    Just feel bad for the guy.

  5. Suisham did not say whether he plans to take legal action against the Steelers, the NFL or the Hall of Fame…
    ******************************************************************************

    What justification or grounds would have have for suing the Steelers? For releasing him after he got a season-ending (now career-ending) injury? If that were lawsuit-worthy, pretty sure every team in the NFL would be up to their necks in lawsuits.

    Hey, while we’re at it, why not conjecture that he might also sue the Vikings since they were in the same stadium when the injury happened.

  6. Given the general concern over injuries in meaningless preseason games, it’s strange that two teams are forced to play a fifth preseason game.

  7. The thing Suisham would have going for him if he decided to sue was that the field was replaced right after the game A lawyer could argue that the HOF knew the field was in bad condition and still let the game go on but to me it all falls under the risk you take when you play the game.

  8. ….tough call….players get hurt all the time & sometimes those injuries are career ending. I want to see how Reggie Bushes suit goes. ( slipping on the concrete and hurting himself). I think the NFL protects ANYTHING that puts them in bad light.

  9. I feel sorry for him. He played hard and was trying to make a tackle. He is 34, so I guess he is lucky this didn’t happen when he was 24. I can see why some players elect not to play in the Pro Bowl. Why risk it?

  10. Next you’ll see players with a slickter lawyer in their ear suing other players for on field injuries.

  11. Canton McKinley HS, Walsh University, and Malone University all play home games there. Three seasons worth of games each year for decades, and the turf is an issue because Shaun Suisham got hurt trying to make a tackle? It can’t be any worse than the garbage fields in Pittsburgh, Washington, and San Francisco.

  12. I think the NFL protects ANYTHING that puts them in bad light.
    ____________________________________

    That’s not unique to the NFL. Every consumer facing corporation does the same thing.

  13. Why would he sue the Steelers? He was not released until today which is over 10 months after the injury and almost 5 months after the playoffs ended. Where were the Steelers at fault?

  14. Packers/Colts play the HOF game this year. Hopefully there are no injuries. Can the field be any worse than Heinz field? Players seem to get injured more often there while making routine plays.

  15. Given that he’s just a kicker, maybe he’s just too soft for any field.

  16. really sucks seeing this kids career end like this, kid was a clutch kicker and was a solid member of the Steelers. This just adds to the issues with meaningless pre-season games in August.

  17. everyone saying “why/how could he sue the steelers” needs to read up on some workplace safety laws. the steelers don’t own the field, which would seem to put them in the clear, but he was an employee of the steelers who allowed (forced) him and his teammates to play a meaningless game on a field that was clearly in dangerous condition. the steelers organization, and the nfl, have an obligation to ensure the safety of their employees and, as such, should have refused to play a game on such a poorly kept playing surface. they are absolutely liable if he chose to sue

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