The news for Atlanta Falcons linebacker Lofa Tatupu has gone from bad to worse. Jay Adams reports on the Falcons' website that head coach Mike Smith has ruled Tatupu out for the season with a pectoral injury suffered last week while working out.
"As you know, Lofa suffered a pectoral injury last week," Smith told Adams. "After further testing, it was determined that he would require a procedure to repair the injury and unfortunately he will miss the entire season."
One of my favorite NFL players from when he spent six seasons with my favorite team, the Seattle Seahawks, Tatupu was trying to make a comeback after missing all of last season with lingering knee issues. Now he'll miss all of this season, too.
Obviously, I'm sure Tatupu isn't thrilled about this turn of events, but I'm crushed. This may be a career-ender for him.
By the time the 2013 season rolls around, Tatupu will be 30 years old and two years out of football--not exactly the kind of linebacker that NFL teams are chomping at the bit to sign. I hope he can come back from this and continue playing at a quality level, but at this point, I'm skeptical.
I suppose the writing was on the wall when the Falcons re-signed 13-year veteran linebacker Mike Peterson yesterday. Peterson's career includes four years with the Indianapolis Colts, six seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the last three campaigns with Atlanta.
Still, it's difficult to learn about the possible beginning-of-the-end of the career of one of my all-time favorite NFL players.
Hopefully my fears are unjustified and we'll see Tatupu back on the field next year, strong as an ox.
The author grew up in Washington State and is a lifelong fan of the Seahawks. He's also a Featured Contributor in Sports with the Yahoo! Contributor Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @RedZoneWriting and on Facebook.
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