Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Jack Del Rio injured on sideline
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars are having some fun at coach Jack Del Rio's expense.
Del Rio injured his left leg Monday night against Baltimore, becoming the latest coach injured in a sideline collision. He is limping and using a golf cart to get to and from the practice field.
Maybe the most embarrassing part for the hard-nosed, former NFL linebacker is that Ravens punter Sam Koch did the damage.
Assistant coach Mark Duffner nominated Koch for a weekly "Jackhammer" award, the accolade Del Rio gives out for hard hits during games. And place-kicker Josh Scobee laughed as loud as he could as Del Rio drove onto the practice field Wednesday.
Even Del Rio took a lighthearted approach with his injury.
"I got a bag of ice and a couple of Tylenol, and that's it," Del Rio said. "I'm good to go."
Del Rio's injury came a little more than a week after New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton broke his left leg on the sideline at Tampa Bay. There have been others, too.
In 2008, then-Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis tore knee ligaments when a player was blocked into him on a punt.
"It's dangerous for everyone because there's not a lot of room on those sidelines," Weis said this week.
Penn State's 84-year-old coach, Joe Paterno shared Payton's fate back in 2006, breaking his leg on a short passing play very similar to the play on which Payton got hurt.
And Del Rio's not the first coach injured in Jacksonville, either.
Defensive coordinator Mel Tucker tore a quadriceps muscle fielding punts last month, had surgery and has been using an electric mobility scooter since.
"I was going to say something to (offensive coordinator) Dirk (Koetter) like, 'What's the deal? You need to get some kind of hover-round or scooter out here because you're the only one without some kind of mobile transportation,'" Scobee said. "It's crazy to see these coaches going down. They're dropping like flies. They've got to stand farther back."
Tight end Marcedes Lewis joked that the NFL lockout might be to blame for the coaching injuries.
"They're not conditioning to walk around," Lewis said. "Today at practice, Tuck was in his scooter and Jack rolled up in his little golf cart right next to him. Thought they were about to race or something."
Receiver Mike Thomas refused to take any blame for Del Rio's injury, even though he ran out of bounds in front of the coach and essentially brought Koch with him.
"I just ran out of bounds. It was the punter. It wasn't me, though," Thomas said. "He's having his fun with it. That's always a plus when your coach can come out and be in good spirits and kind of liven it up for us. It's just funny to see him in a cart, running around and blowing whistles. It's a different look."