Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby JohnH19 » Thu Jul 30, 2020 3:37 pm

George Shaw's injury opens the door for a former member of the Bloomfield Rams.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby BD Sullivan » Thu Jul 30, 2020 3:42 pm

Big Daddy landing on Jim Ninowski in 1962 resulted in Frank Ryan taking over for the Browns and essentially making Ninowski the backup for the remainder of his time with the team. Two years later, Ryan led the Browns to what remains their last title.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby Dirk » Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:58 pm

A healthy Jim McMahon in 1986 through 1988 maybe gets the Bears another SuperBowl victory.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby 7DnBrnc53 » Sun Aug 02, 2020 3:09 pm

Randall Cunningham's injury in 1991. Before he got hurt, there were people out there who believed that the Eagles were a SB contender.

If they make a run in 1991 with a healthy Randall (I think they get to the NFC Title Game and lose at Washington), there could have been more motivation to go all the way in 1992. And, if that somehow butterflies away Jerome Brown's death (it probably doesn't, but who knows), the Eagles may do it, and Reggie doesn't decide to leave for GB in 1993.

Also, Randall probably doesn't retire for a year and end up in Minnesota, and Rich Kotite stays longer :lol: .
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby Teo » Sun Aug 02, 2020 7:16 pm

1986 Cowboys: Danny White is injured against the GIants with Dallas 6-2, and then Steve Pelluer manages the first losing season by the Cowboys and Tom Landry in more than 20 years.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby 74_75_78_79_ » Mon Aug 03, 2020 9:27 pm

7DnBrnc53 wrote:Randall Cunningham's injury in 1991. Before he got hurt, there were people out there who believed that the Eagles were a SB contender.

If they make a run in 1991 with a healthy Randall (I think they get to the NFC Title Game and lose at Washington), there could have been more motivation to go all the way in 1992. And, if that somehow butterflies away Jerome Brown's death (it probably doesn't, but who knows), the Eagles may do it, and Reggie doesn't decide to leave for GB in 1993.

Also, Randall probably doesn't retire for a year and end up in Minnesota, and Rich Kotite stays longer :lol: .


Had #12 not went down in ’91, best guess is the Birds win just enough extra games to get the top wild card spot (4th-seed). Dallas still wins that late-season game against them, thus splitting with them, but I think Philly wins their game vs NO with Randall which means Atl would win their division by tie-breaker - Saints out, Dallas in. Eagles still had their weaknesses though in such a hypothetical. Their run-game was quite weak, secondary still not too special other than Eric Allen. Given Gang Green’s lack-of-playoff success along with not being able to beat Ditka, and given what I just said last sentence, I think the Bears win at the Vet 1st-rd. Jimmy’s Boys still win their playoff debut, only in Atl instead (“Too Legit” one-and-done). Lions at RFK still for the NFCC.

Teo wrote:1986 Cowboys: Danny White is injured against the GIants with Dallas 6-2, and then Steve Pelluer manages the first losing season by the Cowboys and Tom Landry in more than 20 years.


If White doesn’t go down, I still think Dallas stumbles a bit. An overdue decline was eminent. Heaven forbid, they manage to beat the G-men again with White not ever getting knocked out, I think Big Blue Wrecking Crew still wins-out (okay, they finish 13-3 instead) thus still winning-it-all, and playing the same three teams in the playoffs (the sweep simply would have made them madder). Dallas either just get in instead of the Rams only to get knocked right out at RFK anyway, or they just barely miss.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby 7DnBrnc53 » Mon Aug 03, 2020 10:01 pm

I think Philly wins their game vs NO with Randall which means Atl would win their division by tie-breaker - Saints out, Dallas in. Eagles still had their weaknesses though in such a hypothetical. Their run-game was quite weak, secondary still not too special other than Eric Allen. Given Gang Green’s lack-of-playoff success along with not being able to beat Ditka, and given what I just said last sentence, I think the Bears win at the Vet 1st-rd. Jimmy’s Boys still win their playoff debut, only in Atl instead (“Too Legit” one-and-done).


I also think the Eagles beat SF at home at mid-season, which knocks them down to 9-7. As for a 91 Phi@Chi WC game, I think the Eagles beat the crap out of them. That Bear team didn't deserve to be in the playoffs. They were given the game on MNF against the Jets, and they lucked out against the Saints. They lose those, and they are 9-7 and probably out of the money. I also think that ATL wins at home against the Cowboys (Dallas wasn't quite ready yet. They won at Chicago, but the Bears were a paper tiger, as I said).

Then, in Round 2, you have Philly@Washington and ATL@Detroit. The Redskins and Lions still advance, but the Eagles give the Skins a better game than ATL did.

If White doesn’t go down, I still think Dallas stumbles a bit. An overdue decline was eminent. Heaven forbid, they manage to beat the G-men again with White not ever getting knocked out, I think Big Blue Wrecking Crew still wins-out (okay, they finish 13-3 instead) thus still winning-it-all, and playing the same three teams in the playoffs (the sweep simply would have made them madder). Dallas either just get in instead of the Rams only to get knocked right out at RFK anyway, or they just barely miss.


I agree. That team shouldn't have been in the postseason the year before.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby 74_75_78_79_ » Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:21 pm

7DnBrnc53 wrote:
I think Philly wins their game vs NO with Randall which means Atl would win their division by tie-breaker - Saints out, Dallas in. Eagles still had their weaknesses though in such a hypothetical. Their run-game was quite weak, secondary still not too special other than Eric Allen. Given Gang Green’s lack-of-playoff success along with not being able to beat Ditka, and given what I just said last sentence, I think the Bears win at the Vet 1st-rd. Jimmy’s Boys still win their playoff debut, only in Atl instead (“Too Legit” one-and-done).


I also think the Eagles beat SF at home at mid-season, which knocks them down to 9-7. As for a 91 Phi@Chi WC game, I think the Eagles beat the crap out of them. That Bear team didn't deserve to be in the playoffs. They were given the game on MNF against the Jets, and they lucked out against the Saints. They lose those, and they are 9-7 and probably out of the money. I also think that ATL wins at home against the Cowboys (Dallas wasn't quite ready yet. They won at Chicago, but the Bears were a paper tiger, as I said).

Then, in Round 2, you have Philly@Washington and ATL@Detroit. The Redskins and Lions still advance, but the Eagles give the Skins a better game than ATL did.


I don't know, maybe I'm wrong, but I always felt that the '91 Bears were a legitimately good (not great) team deserving of the playoffs. Now the previous year...well, of course! Whereas in '90 every team in their division was bad, at least in '91 you had the 12-4 Lions whom they split with and a respectable-enough 8-8 Viking squad whom they did sweep. Bears gave Wash a good game, were only down 10-7 at end of 3rd Q; beat them statistically FWIW. They did have the 4th-ranked defense in '91.

Gang Green, as historic their D was that year, always couldn't hack it in the playoffs. Not sure what Kotite could have done vs Ditka that Buddy wasn't able to do in his three non-scab meetings vs him. Yes, Birds beat Saints the following year in NO but, let's face it, it was simply a case of "one of them" having to win a playoff game!

I also opine that Dallas, though not ready to win-it-all, were ready to at least win a playoff game as they did. They ended '91 pretty strong, finishing 5-0 with four of those wins vs playoff teams. Finale, yes, was vs Atl; and at home. I think they would have been good enough to beat them again the following week, even if they'd now have to hit the road to do so. Usually future-champion-squads win their first playoff game, even if it takes another year or so to actually win that first title. Bears losing to them in the 1st-Rd at Soldier nothing at all to hang head over.

Dallas getting blasted by Detroit, as they also did during the regular season, was I guess just a weird case of Detroit simply matching up with they if only just for that one season. Yes, of course, I feel Eagles give Wash a better game than Atl - or Det - did. I also think Dallas gives a good enough game at RFK as well.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby 7DnBrnc53 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 8:21 pm

For the 90's Cowboys, it was more than one injury that changed their franchise around.

1. Charles Haley's injuries. In 1995, he had 10.5 sacks and 33 pressures in the first 10 games, but suffered a ruptured disk against the Redskins in Week 14. He had one sack and five tackles in the Super Bowl six weeks after back surgery. The next season, they tried to put him on a pitch count, but he only played in five games before being deactivated after Week 10 with a back injury. In the offseason, he retired because his daughter had leukemia, but also due to the back injuries.

2. Jay Novacek. He missed the 1996 season due to a degenerative disc in his back, and retired the same offseason that Haley did.

3. Michael Irvin. His career-ending injury at the Vet in 1999 was the end of the Triplets. Soon after, Troy Aikman retired (I heard that it was more due to the direction of the team and not his concussions) and Emmitt Smith would be in the desert.
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Re: Injuries that changed the course of a franchise

Postby RichardBak » Sat Aug 08, 2020 11:24 am

Bobby Layne's leg injury in the second-from-last game of the 1957 regular season. His cleats caught in the mud and the bones in his lower right leg snapped when he was tackled. Tobin Rote, of course, went on to guide the Lions to their last title. Rote's success set in motion Layne's trade to Pittsburgh 2 games deep into the '58 season. Layne was slow to recuperate from the injury, which affected his mobility and his placekicking, and HC George Wilson (never a big fan of Layne's antics) decided to hold on to the younger, healthier Rote. Years later, Wilson admitted he'd made a mistake and should've traded Rote. Those Lions teams of the early 1960s were competitive, finishing second to Green Bay 3 straight years. Yale Lary and Joe Schmidt insisted they could've won another title or two if Layne had been QB instead of guys like Ninowski, Plum, and Morrall. Instead it's been 63 long years...and counting.
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