Mike Ryan: Bridgewater’s ACL tear likely led to the dislocation

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A non-contact ACL tear isn’t entirely uncommon for an NFL player. A dislocated knee and an ACL tear without contact almost never happens.

Former NFL athletic trainer Mike Ryan, who now serves as NBC Sports Medicine Analyst, explained via email that the dislocation likely occurred after the ACL tear made the entire joint unstable.

“Mechanically speaking, the knee joint is formed by the long thigh bone (femur) resting on top of the main shin bone (tibia),” Ryan explained. “Because the knee joint is structurally unstable and very dependent on ligaments for stability, the rupturing of a main ligament(s) leaves the knee joint vulnerable to a dislocation. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament’s two main functions are to stabilize the shin bone directly under the thigh bone and, secondly, to minimize internal rotation of that shin bone. Therefore, when the ACL is torn, the knee ‘buckles’ inward and quickly becomes grossly unstable. As in the case of Teddy’s injury, the stress of a collapsing body over a now-unstable knee joint is enough to dislocate the knee joint.”

Ryan explained, based on his experience treating multiple players having dislocated knees, that “this type of an injury can quickly escalate from an orthopedic injury to a medical emergency because of the high risk of damage to local nerves and blood vessels.” The good news, if there is any, for the Vikings is that it appears that Bridgewater suffered no nerve or artery damage.

43 responses to “Mike Ryan: Bridgewater’s ACL tear likely led to the dislocation

  1. Ugh. I just feel awful for the kid. And to the Vikings fans. I know how you feel. I look forward to the QBs battling back, and our teams putting up a good fight to hold down the fort while they’re out. – Cowboys fan.

  2. Now we can sign my personal hero Kaepernick. It’s not like we had a chance of going better than 8-8 anyways. The Packers will easily win the division now. Maybe we can sign one of their backup QBs after they cut one

  3. Google Tibiofemoral Dislocation. That doesn’t just happen for no reason. Teddy clearly damaged or weakened the ligaments during that last preseason game. That field is not safe.

  4. I wonder if he injured his ACL on that HARD DEKE he put on the Chargers safety. He planted really hard on that left knee. I really hope this kid can rebound from his injury! He is such a great person and role model.

  5. I saw a story saying Teddy could have been in danger of losing his leg if not for quick action by the trainers. It’s amazing how these things can happen to a world class athlete just by doing a normal action he does all the time.

  6. Packer fan here – definitely feel terrible for this kid, it really sucks. Getting hurt during physical contact is one thing, but this freakish stuff, is when you almost wonder if some people’s bodies just start to betray them, for whatever reason. Sadly, it happens to a lot of players, in all sports. I hope the kid recovers – the Vikings truly have been building a nice team up there.

  7. Great clinical description of a could-be-very-gruesome injury…this is a very tough break for a promising young player and perhaps a make or break situation for Mike Zimmer.

  8. Feel terrible for this kid, seems like a good dude and you never want to see a young guy with promise hampered with an injury during key developmental time or even a potential breakout year. I remember Brady getting blown out in the first game of the ’08 season, and it’s just disheartening as a fan. And at least in Brady’s case, it happened in the line of duty, which sucks, but that’s the game they play. This is just a freak accident. I can’t imagine how frustrated Teddy must be, as well as his coaches and teammates. Best of luck to him, looking forward to watching him bounce back and get that Comeback Player of the Year in 2017.

  9. Makes me sick. Such a good kid with such promise. For what it’s worth, he was killing it in the preseason, too. Everything that we’d been wanting to see out of him he was showing. Now we’ll never know what could’ve been this year. Hoping for a speedy recovery. Get well, Teddy!

  10. What are the concerns about the field? I hope it’s not an issue, is it a new kind of turf like astroturf where people down the road will then see what kind of issues it is?

    It would be a shame to open a billion dollar stadium and have a 10 cent field.

  11. Damn, sucks for him and robs the Vikings from competing with the packers.

    Unless Packers continue their downward trend I don’t see anyone challenging them.

  12. “Google Tibiofemoral Dislocation. That doesn’t just happen for no reason. Teddy clearly damaged or weakened the ligaments during that last preseason game. That field is not safe.”

    What makes THAT field any different than any other turf?

  13. My Jaguars are playing both the Vikings and the Raiders this season, so those games looked to be great matchups of our young QB Bortles with two of the other “new” guys.

    Damn shame.

  14. “…this type of an injury can quickly escalate from an orthopedic injury to a medical emergency because of the high risk of damage to local nerves and blood vessels.”

    This answers my question about why an ambulance was brought in so quickly. Thanks.

  15. I’ve heard two competing theories on turf issues.

    1. the turf was compressed down from the soccer game and concerts and was not brushed prior to the first game so was slippery. If true, malfeasance on the part of Vikes.
    2. the rubber balls mixed in with the turf had not had time to settle yet. I’m told in this scenario, it will take 5-6 weeks of use to “break the field in.”

    In either case, Vikes need to take steps to remediate the problem. So far, that field has destroyed the seasons of Joe Barksdale, Branden Oliver, and Teddy Bridgewater.

    Who’s next?

  16. After crying into a pillow for the last 17 hours I came to the realization that Stave is the next Tom Brady and the Vikings will win the Super Bowl. (Jk, Hope this comment made you smile).. All I can really hope for this season is that the packers stay perfectly healthy and still loose every game by one point on last second field goals. That would be nice.

  17. Usually the Vikings wait until post-season to crush my soul — at least they got it over with early this year.

    And he was injured at the Vikings practice facility, not on the new stadium turf. Based on the comments above, I assume the same fans have objected loudly about field conditions regarding every player that has blown out their ACLs at Lambeau. Didn’t Jordy Nelson?

  18. I’m not an orthopedic surgeon, but I’ve never before heard anyone suggest that a torn ACL was caused by a weakening of the ligament because of something that happened two days earlier. Blaming the US Bank stadium turf for this injury seems like a stretch to me.

    Could be that certain people are unhappy with their own stadium situation now that they’ve seen ours, so they’re looking for whatever negativity they can find.

  19. Not matter how you say this, this sounds like it hurt and hurt bad. They had to sedate him he was in so much pain. Best wishes for this kid. I hate to see this happen to anyone, even teams I dislike.

  20. Damn. That makes you wonder with the prevalence of ACL injuries how this doesn’t happen more often.

  21. Based on the comments above, I assume the same fans have objected loudly about field conditions regarding every player that has blown out their ACLs at Lambeau. Didn’t Jordy Nelson?

    ================================

    No – I believe he tore his ACL in Cincinnati. How dare you try to trash the most historic and awesome stadium in all of sports.

  22. From a Packer fan … hurry back kid. You’re good. Keep your head up and have a long distinguished career. Until then … rooting for ya.

  23. The more I read about the dislocation, the scarier it gets. It sounds like there is a very real chance he never plays again. That would be tragic.

    Hope he recovers and resumes his career.

  24. Jurrel Casey and the rest of the Titans pass rushers are licking their chops in anticipation of getting themselves a bit of Shaun Hill.

  25. To some packer fans celebrating Teddy’s loss, it would be just like a Viking fan cheering the loss of your qb lying on the field lifeless. Classless!!

  26. While it great that it doesn’t look like he suffered nerve damage and can make a full recovery. But he’s still in for a long road of recovery and could be effective by this for the rest of his career. A knee dislocation is considered one of the most severe knee injuries. For the way it was reported it seems like a unreduced dislocation for players to be sick and emergency personal to not underestimate the severity of it. Also circulatory damage can go undetected because of the lack of swelling in the knee. Knee dislocation for a athlete is typically a 9 to 12 month recovery time with it being unlikely that the athlete can complete at the same level before the injury.

  27. Before making comments about the ‘unsafe’ turf at the Vikes new stadium causing this injury, do a little fact checking.. The injury occurred at the Vikings practice facility, NOT at US Bank stadium.

  28. In Teddy We Trust says:
    Aug 31, 2016 2:02 PM
    I’m not an orthopedic surgeon, but I’ve never before heard anyone suggest that a torn ACL was caused by a weakening of the ligament because of something that happened two days earlier. Blaming the US Bank stadium turf for this injury seems like a stretch to me.

    ———

    Oh, you’ve never heard of it, eh? Must mean it can’t happen. Did you even watch the game? Players were sliding all over the place. It was like they were playing on ice. I’ve been playing and watching football for over 50 years. Never seen anything like it before.

  29. lnfinite says:
    Aug 31, 2016 2:34 PM
    To some packer fans celebrating Teddy’s loss, it would be just like a Viking fan cheering the loss of your qb lying on the field lifeless. Classless!!

    —————–

    I’d be interested to know where this has happened on this site.

  30. skittlesareyum says:
    Aug 31, 2016 3:28 PM
    lnfinite says:
    Aug 31, 2016 2:34 PM
    To some packer fans celebrating Teddy’s loss, it would be just like a Viking fan cheering the loss of your qb lying on the field lifeless. Classless!!

    —————–

    I’d be interested to know where this has happened on this site.
    ==============================================

    Or any of the other threads. No one has cheered this injury. lnfinite is clearly making things up.

  31. shaggytoodle says:
    Aug 31, 2016 1:03 PM

    What are the concerns about the field? I hope it’s not an issue, is it a new kind of turf like astroturf where people down the road will then see what kind of issues it is?

    It would be a shame to open a billion dollar stadium and have a 10 cent field.
    ————————-

    Like others have said, the injury was at Winter Park and not the U.S. Bank Stadium. As for the turn at the new stadium it’s the same stuff being used everywhere. Players from both teams who played on Sunday said the turn is soft and a bit slippery, but it’s normal until it gets broken in after a few games and hardens up.

  32. That’s why I was so confused, I didn’t know if people thought maybe his juke move vs. SD weakened his knee only to undone a few days late. That’s what I thought people were saying, and it didn’t make any sense to me all though I do want to believe I remember hearing things about the Texans and Zona field but that is so far back I am uncertain. So I was wondering if there was any possible merit to which, made little sense to me thanks for the answer in a polite. Nontrolly form

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