Carl Nicks tried to play through injury but no longer could
Carl Nicks has been playing hurt since mid-September. Think about that: The plate that holds his toes in place -- the plantar plate, it's called -- has presumably been torn for more than six weeks.
And, yet, Nicks hasn't missed a game before being placed on injured reserve today.
Now that we know the extent of the injury to Nicks -- previously it was described only as a toe injury -- we're getting a better picture of what he's been playing through for nearly two months. Nicks' injury, we are told by a source, has been getting gradually worse week after painful week. But it was not noticeable in his performance, which remained exemplary.
Nicks could be seen after games and practices carefully removing his cleats so that he wouldn't add to the discomfort. Known as one of the tougher guys in the league, this was an injury that even he couldn't continue to play through -- though not for a lack of trying. One person we talked to described Nicks as "tough as nails."
So, when you see Nicks' injury described as a "toe," you should know that the description doesn't even begin to cover it all.
(Photo by Daniel Wallace, Times Staff)