Ravens rookie kicker Kaare Vedvik hospitalized, reportedly with 'head wounds'

Shalise Manza Young
·Yahoo Sports Columnist

In a day full of NFL news, this might be the strangest and most alarming: Baltimore Ravens rookie kicker Kaare Vedvik, who was impressive in the preseason, was in some sort of incident and as of Saturday evening was at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

Few details on injury

The Ravens placed Vedvik on the reserve/non-football injury list, which was a surprising move at the time. But word quickly came that something had happened.

Ravens rookie kicker/punter Kaare Vedvik has been hospitalized with head injuries. (AP)
Ravens rookie kicker/punter Kaare Vedvik has been hospitalized with head injuries. (AP)

Radio station 105.7 The Fan tweeted that Vedvik “sustained head injuries and had his teeth knocked out,” while Baltimore Sun reporter Justin Fenton tweeted that Vedvik was “assaulted and robbed.”

Police told Fenton that Vedvik was found around 4 a.m. Saturday, but have not confirmed how his injuries occurred and are investigating. The hospital said he is in stable condition.

The Ravens posted a statement that said only, “Kaare Vedvik has sustained head injuries and we are monitoring the situation.”

Vedvik’s hospital location indicates that it’s a serious situation: the Shock Trauma Center website says it is dedicated “to treating the critically sick and severely injured and employing groundbreaking research and innovative medical procedures with one goal in mind – saving lives.”

From Norway to Marshall to Baltimore

Vedvik grew up playing soccer in Norway, but during a year as an exchange student at a Kansas high school, coaches sent him to work with the team’s other kicker even though Vedvik had wanted to be a receiver.

An 80-yard kickoff with the junior varsity team earned him a spot on the varsity roster, and at the end of that year, someone told Vedvik his leg was strong enough to play college football. He began working toward that goal.

Every weekend, he spent hours on a field alone, recording himself kicking and coaching himself. In just a few months, he went from being able to make 44-yard field goals to 64-yarders, and was even able to kick with both feet.

He went to a camp where he made a 70-yard kick, and that put him on the map. When he returned to Norway, he emailed people on the staffs of every FBS and FCS school he could. Missouri offered him a spot as a preferred walk-on, but he couldn’t afford tuition (Norway offers free university to residents), but Marshall said it would give him a scholarship.

Originally the Thundering Herd’s kickoff specialist, Vedvik sat out his junior year learning how to punt, and as a senior he handled kickoffs, field goals and punting.

Despite the presence of Justin Tucker and Sam Kick on the Ravens’ roster, Vedvik decided to sign with Baltimore after the draft; he’d had a private workout with Ravens special teams coach Jerry Rosburg before the draft.

He’d had a fine preseason, converting 8-of-9 field goals, including a 56-yarder in the preseason finale on Thursday night, and all nine extra-point tries. Baltimore had designs on trading Vedvik to a kicker-needy team.

All of that, however, has taken a back seat to what appears to be a serious situation for the 24-year-old.

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