It shouldn't come as a huge surprise to anyone who saw the hit he took to his knee on Saturday night, but Dolphins tight end Dustin Keller is out for the season.
Multiple reports (Alex Marvez of FoxSports.com was first) confirm the obvious: D.J. Swearinger blasting Keller's knee with his helmet will put the tight end out for all of 2013. The news is somehow worse than just the simplicity of him missing time too: Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that Keller tore his ACL, MCL and PCL and, to top it off, suffered a dislocated knee. Just brutal.
When Keller sustained the injury, he'd caught the ball and just had planted his right leg to make a move upfield when Swearinger came flying in and planted his helmet on Keller's knee:
The result, which you can watch here, was a gruesome injury.
There's a small silver lining (I suppose) as Marvez reports that Keller's injury isn't believed to be "career-threatening."
Unfortunately, this was supposed to be a gamble-on-himself season for Keller, who signed a one-year deal with the Dolphins in order to cash in on the free-agent market in 2014. Keller's injury should be a big blow to a potentially potent (but not quite proven) Miami offense as well.
And it should draw attention to defenders using their helmets to target the lower bodies of other players.
Swearinger pointed out Saturday that he went low because going high would've resulted in a fine for helmet-to-helmet contact. Keller, on the other hand, would probably be willing to pay Swearinger's fine if it meant he could suit up at any time this season.
At least Swearinger apologized to "Justin" on Twitter afterwards.
Everybody pray 4 justin keller....i pray you have a speedy recovery bro...and kill it when you get back.... DEFINITELY wasnt intentional..— DJ Swearinger (@JungleBoi_Swagg) August 18, 2013
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