After injuring his foot in Week 9 against the 49ers, rookie receiver Niles Paul has been officially ruled out for the last two weeks with turf toe.
As he explains it, it’s a painful sprain/strain/inflammation of the ligaments surrounding the big toe joint.
And like most injuries, it’s given him an appreciation for the smaller things in life, starting with his own foot.
“Let me start off by saying that, y’know, you never really appreciate how many things your big toe does,” he said. “Until you hurt it and you can’t do those things anymore. I’m a receiver and I come from an explosive standpoint, and it’s just like, when you try to push off and you try to explode, it’s very painful.”
“I’m trying to walk around normally on it so it can heal, and doing rehab.”
Toe rehab, that is. I would never make light of another man’s injury, but Paul admits that he has in the past.
“Actually in college, the quarterback had turf toe, and he was out a couple games,” he said with a sheepish smile. “I remember I was like, ‘What’s wrong with you? It’s your big toe, man. Why are you being a wussy here?'”
Limp a mile in another man’s shoes, and hindsight is 20/20.
“Now I got it,” he said. “I almost wanna call him up and apologize, ’cause I let him know in college that he was being a wussy. Now I know.”
While Paul is resting and rehabbing, he welcomes the newest addition to the Paul family: a 12-week old black Labrador Retriever, named Simba:
“My family has always had animals, but this is my first–this is my child,” said the proud Papa. “He’s a big boy. I’ve got a lotta time right now to play with him, and I’ve been training him too when I get off from work.”
“I can’t go out right now, so I’ve been using him as my home entertainment.”
Hopefully his four-legged entertainment will help him get back on his own two feet soon.