When running back David Wilson was drafted in the first round by the New York Giants in 2012, he probably had higher hopes for his career than two NFL seasons and 115 career carries. But that's where his NFL career will end, because of a neck injury.
The Giants sent out a press release titled "David Wilson advised not to play football." In that release, it's clear that Wilson has decided to retire.
“I’m thankful that I can literally walk away from the game and that I am healthy and capable of doing the same things I have done all my life, except play football,” said Wilson. “I always try to find the positive in everything. This morning when I saw Dr. [Frank] Cammisa and Dr. [Russell] Warren, I didn’t hear what I wanted to hear, but I expected that what they told me could be a possibility. I had played out both scenarios in my mind. I prayed this morning before I went to see them that they would tell me what God would tell me. He put His answer in them to relay to me.”
Wilson suffered a season-ending neck injury in 2013. He had spinal fusion surgery but was back on the practice field for training camp last month. When he suffered a neck "Burner," or nerve injury, in practice last week, it set off a lot of alarms.
Now, after being examined, he will give up the sport. As Fox Sports 1's Mike Garafolo points out, the word "retire" isn't used in the press release, because he couldn't claim injury protection on his salary if he officially retired.
“Dr. Frank Cammisa Jr., our spine specialist at HSS, examined David this morning and following that exam, we both sat down and shared our perspective with David,” said Dr. Warren, the Giants' team physician. “David has diffuse cervical stenosis. He had a disc removed and a fusion in January. In light of last week’s episode of symptoms, sensory and motor, Frank and I both told David he should not play football any more. We let David know that by playing, he would be putting himself at risk for more episodes like last week or perhaps something more serious. ”
It's a pretty tough blow for a 23-year-old man to see the career he worked his whole life to get be taken from him after two fairly disappointing seasons.
Wilson started off 2012 in the doghouse but came on near the end of the year to post 358 yards. Hopes were high for him in 2013, but injuries limited him to 146 yards and the neck injury ended his season after five games.
Although it's terrible news for Wilson, he maintained an upbeat attitude about the news.
“I don’t want anybody to feel sorry for me, or pity me,” said Wilson. “I lived my dream. A lot of people only get to dream their dream. I lived that dream. Now I have a chance to dream another dream and live that, too.”
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