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  1. #1
    r8rh8rmike's Avatar
    r8rh8rmike is offline Superbowl MVP
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    Smith OK After Hospital Visit

    Smith OK After Hospital Visit
    Monday, November 30, 2009


    By Nick Wagoner
    Senior Writer

    Of all the injuries and ailments plaguing the Rams on Sunday against Seattle, it was one case of nausea on the sideline that perhaps caused the most concern.

    Rams tackle Jason Smith, inactive for the contest against the Seahawks because of lingering effects from a concussion suffered a week earlier against Arizona, was on the sideline watching the Rams and Seahawks on Sunday afternoon when he suddenly began to feel ill.

    Smith complained of a nauseous feeling that led to vomiting and light headedness. He was promptly whisked away to Barnes Hospital in St. Louis for tests and observation just before the start of the fourth quarter.

    “I was experiencing some things that weren’t real normal,” Smith said Monday afternoon. “I asked the doctors what’s going on with me. He said to take the proper precautions to what you feel and get you out of here to get you checked out. That’s what we did. I was sick and vomiting and wasn’t feeling good.”

    Because Smith is still recovering from the concussion he suffered last week, the doctors wanted to take a closer look and run a battery of tests that would determine if or how the nausea related to his concussion symptoms.

    The good news, revealed by coach Steve Spagnuolo and athletic trainer Jim Anderson on Monday afternoon, is that Smith passed all of those tests with nothing out of the ordinary showing up on them.

    Smith said Monday there was no hard evidence from his CAT scan that the symptoms he suffered from on Sunday were a direct result of his concussion. In fact, Smith says he was never told that the two were related though that remained a possibility.

    “They tested me on a couple of different things,” Smith said. “They never said it was because of the concussion. It was like something was wrong with your stomach or whatever.”

    At the conclusion of those tests, Smith was released from the hospital and allowed to return home Sunday evening.

    “It sounds like he’s OK which is a good thing,” Spagnuolo said.

    Before Sunday, Smith said he had awoken feeling different every day but had not yet felt illness like he did on Sunday.
    As with most concussions, there are variety of symptoms that go along with the injury. In some cases, those symptoms can be triggered by various factors.

    For instance, basketball star Blake Griffin suffered a concussion while playing for Oklahoma last year and complained that it was made worse by attending a home game he wasn’t playing in by the myriad lights and loud noises in the arena that night.

    “There are all kinds of symptoms that happen with a concussion,” Smith said. “They say noise and they say lights but obviously you having one, you feel all those things. It just depends on when they go away.”

    Despite his awareness that his symptoms could be inflamed by attending the game, Smith said he never considered staying home.

    Instead, Smith wanted to be with his team at the game and served as the eyes on the sideline for Adam Goldberg, his replacement at right tackle. Before leaving for the hospital, Smith offered tips and observations to Goldberg.

    Of course, Smith was just one of many players around the league sitting out because of a concussion.

    “The landscape of the league right now is the concern of concussions and we are certainly concerned with Jason so we will make sure everything is done the right way so that’s why we went about it that way,” Spagnuolo said.

    Indeed, the number of concussions around the league seems to be ticking upward with each passing year. On Sunday alone, superstars like Arizona quarterback Kurt Warner and Pittsburgh signal caller Ben Roethlisberger sat out their respective games because of lingering complications from concussions.

    Philadelphia receiver DeSean Jackson suffered a blow to the head, joining his teammate running back Brian Westbrook on the sideline. Westbrook suffered two head injuries in three weeks.

    Because of the increasing number of concussions around the league and the tough guy mentality prevalent in the NFL, Commissioner Roger Goodell has made examining the problem of concussions a priority.

    In fact, the league will soon put independent doctors on every sideline and Goodell reportedly has plans to expand how concussions are treated.

    Teams will soon employ “independent” medical personnel deemed acceptable by the league as experts in the field of dealing with head injuries.

    “We’re not in the business of ending careers. We’re trying to extend careers,” Goodell said.

    Previously, players could in theory finish games in which they suffered concussions unless they were knocked unconscious at some point.
    When Smith suffered his injury against Arizona, he says he never blanked out and under old rules could potentially have finished the game. But Rams medical staff told him he was done in that game.

    After he was unable to pass the baseline neurological tests last week, he was declared inactive for the Seattle contest. Smith said he understands the league’s expanded emphasis on taking care of head trauma until it’s complete.

    “It kind of goes back to the deal like in my situation – what good is 310 pounds of twisted steel without a head?” Smith said. “It won’t go anywhere. It’s kind of one of those deals where you have such a valuable league they are protecting the integrity of the league and they want things to be done right. So if that’s what they say needs to be done, that is what’s going to happen.”

    As for his return to the field, Smith says he is unsure of the plan for this week. Spagnuolo said Monday that Smith would still need to pass the baseline tests at some point this week in order to get clearance from doctors to play against the Bears this week.

    Smith was already feeling better on Monday.

    “I feel great,” Smith said, laughing. “I feel like 310 pounds of twisted steel and sex appeal. Obviously dealing with this, I feel the organization is doing a great job of making sure I don’t have anything that is lingering where I can play at 100 percent.”

    But just because Smith is feeling better doesn’t mean he wants to rush his return to the field at the risk of further or more serious injury.

    “Tomorrow I could be Superman again,” Smith said. “Right now, I am just Batman. I can’t fly. I want to get back with the team but I don’t want to die. Before I practice and try to play the game, I want to make sure I can play the game.”


  2. #2
    tomahawk247's Avatar
    tomahawk247 is offline Registered User
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    Re: Smith OK After Hospital Visit

    I feel like 310 pounds of twisted steel and sex appeal
    “Tomorrow I could be Superman again,” Smith said. “Right now, I am just Batman. I can’t fly. I want to get back with the team but I don’t want to die. Before I practice and try to play the game, I want to make sure I can play the game.”
    These two quotes are probably the best i have seen in the NFL this year, i love this guys personality!

  3. #3
    GROUND DOG 39's Avatar
    GROUND DOG 39 is offline Registered User
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    Re: Smith OK After Hospital Visit

    I beginning to love this kid, great draft pick. Just hope he is not injury prone, thats my only worry at the moment. JL is a good player. Fletcher was coming along nicely until the injury. I hope he recovers enough to realise his potential because that knee took a real beating. I hope he rehabs his knee and rules out playing next season to maximise his potential to make a career out of football. Hate this too ruin his career before it started?
    GO RAMS

  4. #4
    r8rh8rmike's Avatar
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    Re: Smith OK After Hospital Visit

    Despite his awareness that his symptoms could be inflamed by attending the game, Smith said he never considered staying home.

    Instead, Smith wanted to be with his team at the game and served as the eyes on the sideline for Adam Goldberg, his replacement at right tackle. Before leaving for the hospital, Smith offered tips and observations to Goldberg.
    What is not to love about a guy who has this kind of attitude? He wanted to be with his teammates and after getting sick on the sideline, before he is taken to the hospital, he wants to make sure he offers his observations to Goldberg. This kid is special and will be a corner stone of the OL if he can stay away from the injuries.

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