Former Green Bay Packers Tight End Jermichael Finley suffered an extreme injury that required a spinal surgery. You guys may remember seeing it on TV, but you forget that Jermichael Finley is a human being, just like the rest of us. Peyton Manning successfully returned from a similar operation, but not everyone is Peyton Manning, and Manning's injury was more of a chronic thing, not a sudden collision with a defender that left him hapless.
What would you do if you put your body on the line for something and you ended up being temporarily paralyzed, narrowly escaping permanent paralysis or even death?
Very few people would go back to the game that hurt them the most, as that would be a significant psychological impediment whenever one tried to catch a ball, no?
In a person's mind, he will think about that one time he couldn't feel his arms and legs, the two things that let him get to that pass. And each time he reaches out for the oblong pigskin spiraling in his vicinity, he must relive that moment.
Here's a quote from Finley himself:
"Do I have fear? Of course I do. It's
impossible not to have fear given what I've gone through over the past
four weeks. I've worked my entire life to do what I do on that football
field, and it's a very scary feeling being taken off the field on a
Even as Finley gained medical clearance to play in the NFL again, he reportedly is waiting to sit out the first four weeks of the season so that he can collect on a $10 million tax-free insurance policy. Why does the tax-free mean so much? When you earn as much money as a professional sports player, you pay high amounts of taxes - nearly 40% of your income goes straight to the federal government. So $10 million tax free is really $16.66 million before taxes. So a team would have to make a significant bet on his health to even get near the amount of money that Finley would be turning down if he returned week 1.
By waiting until after week 4, the tight end can give his body a little more time to rest, while making some big money at the same time.
The Steelers reportedly offered Finley some sort of deal, but Finley is still waiting to accept it.
If I told you that you could take 4 weeks off from physically-exhausting work, and pay you $10 million tax-free, would you turn it down?