- Dec 21, 2016
- Reaction score
Fully agreed. And there are examples of NFL players having a good performance or two with some pretty bad injuries. Emmitt Smith had a huge performance on a dislocated shoulder, McNabb threw for 250 and 4 TDs on a broken ankle, Leftwich had a broken leg and led a 17-point comeback for Marshall, driving up and down the field multiple times. They ended up losing, but dude had to be carried by his linemen from snap to snap. Overall, they'll perform at a lower level than if healthy, but being injured doesn't mean you can't put up some good performances here and there, definitely not binary as implied.Agreed... Injuries and performance are not some binary thing. Its easier to utilize basketball players as an example because there are fewer external factors to their performance that add noise to how we evaluate them. We OFTEN see basketball players return from injuries or play through injuries and have lost a little bit of that extra step on a drive, or lift on a jumper... but that doesn't stop them from lighting it up from time to time and having the kind of game that calls into question whether injury is really a factor. Hell, we saw that consistently from Garland in his first season+ (Jarratt Allen at the end of last year is another strong example).
That said, I don't think that injury is reason to absolve Baker of all shortcomings.. that would be the other extreme in how we evaluate him. But to take this year's 'injured' performance and stack it up to a healthy Baker from mid last year to week two of this year and say that injury should have no place in evaluating him because he was able to mix in a few good performances seems like a narrow approach.
I played basketball all throughout my youth (highest level only high school > then University COC basketball programs). Played in a 6-game church tournament on shin splints one time. Shin splints are AWFUL in terms of pain, man. I played like shit but one game I played very well and got a triple-double + team MVP for that game. Things just went right, and despite the limited athleticism I was able to make everything count.
I've also had big games in rec centers playing on heel spurs (achilles tendinitis) but overall my performance wasn't as good as I could have been if fully healthy.
Anyway, I don't think injury should excuse Baker but I don't know how anyone can't cut him SOME slack having a completely torn labrum, shoulder fracture, and bone bruises in his knee and heel, just because he had a couple good games vs. the Bengals and Chargers. Just seems like logic from someone who isn't accustomed to how injuries work.