The strange case of a missing fingertip

Next time you find yourself thinking about the ridiculous amounts of money NFL players make, I have two words for you:

Rashad Johnson.

Johnson, an Arizona Cardinals free safety who played for Alabama, will make $800,000 this season. Yes, that’s good money.

But when the Cardinals played the Saints in the Superdome Sunday, you could have called it blood money.

This might be the most strange football injury ever. Read on, but not if you are eating.

Shortly before halftime Sunday Johnson went to the sidelines with blood leaking like a faucet out of the glove he wore on his left hand. He reportedly first thought he had a torn fingernail.

So, naturally, the trainer cut the the bloody glove off Johnson’s hand only to see that the finger tip of his middle finger was no longer attached. No, it was still in the glove.

Now here’s the kicker:

Johnson does not know how it happened.

My guess when I first heard about it: He got it caught in somebody’s facemask or another part of equipment.

Johnson told reporters he didn’t remember anything like that happening. He guesses it just got caught in the Superdome artificial turf and just snapped and tore off.

Initial reports — that he returned to play in the game — are not true. There was too much chance of infection.

The finger was repaired by shaving the bone and then covering the wound with a flap of skin.

Hold up one of your hands. Imagine your middle finger being the same length as the two beside it. That’s what Johnson’s looks like now.

“It was pretty shocking to see it that way,” Johnson told a reporter for The Arizona Republic. “But this type of stuff happens. Guys end up with bad biceps, bad shoulders, bad fingers. I mean, it’s just a part of the game fans don’t get an opportunity to see.”

Thankfully, in this case, I’d say.

And you are probably wondering how long the loss of part of his finger will keep Johnson out.

He expects to play Sunday against Tampa Bay.

That’s earning your keep, if you ask me.

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