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#pounditThursday, December 8, 2022

Sterling Shepard has theory for how he suffered ACL injury

Sterling Shephard wearing headphones

New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard on the field for warm ups before the Giants face the Los Angeles Rams at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021, in East Rutherford. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com / USA TODAY NETWORK

New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard suffered a season-ending ACL tear in a very unusual way, but he thinks he knows what might have happened.

Shepard tore his ACL in Week 3 against the Dallas Cowboys, and curiously he seemed to do so while slowing to a jog at the end of a play. That prompted many to blame the artificial playing surface at MetLife Stadium for the injury.

On Wednesday, Shepard did not absolve the turf of blame for his injury, but did reveal how he appeared to tear his ACL while jogging. In short, the wide receiver felt he suffered a partial tear two plays earlier, but played through the discomfort because he did not think it would be a big deal.

“I think I actually partially tore it probably like two plays before that,” Shepard said. “I kind of got up, and my knee did something funny. I was just like, ‘Forget about it and keep on pushing.’ The next play actually got blown dead, which in hindsight I’m kind of happy about because I was about to have to stick off my left and hard cut. And the next play I was literally just jogging, and I’m sure you guys saw it. It just slid on me and popped.”

That is, admittedly, an unusual way to suffer such a major injury. Unfortunately for Shepard, a lot of things about the injury were unusual, not the least of which that he wound up getting fined for something that happened in the same game. This won’t halt criticism of the turf, but it does at least provide a bit of extra context.

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