NFL rocked after 'frightening' Russell Gage incident during playoffs

The sickening injury to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers star has sparked concern across the NFL world.

Buccaneers receiver Russell Gage was taken to hospital after the nasty incident in the NFL playoffs game against the Cowboys. Pic: Getty
Buccaneers receiver Russell Gage was taken to hospital after the nasty incident in the NFL playoffs game against the Cowboys. Pic: Getty

For the second time this month, NFL fans have been rocked by a frightening injury after Tampa Bay Buccaneers receiver Russell Gage went down in sickening scenes during the playoffs game against the Dallas Cowboys. He was taken to a local hospital to be evaluated for a concussion and neck injury after the horror incident late in the game.

Just two weeks after Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed and needed to be resuscitated on the field, another sobering moment occurred during a prime-time Monday night match in the United States. Gage had to be taken off by a stretcher late in the fourth quarter of the Bucs' 14-31 loss to the Cowboys after a brutal tackle involving Dallas star Donovan Wilson.

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The Cowboys safety made contact with Gage's head after an incomplete pass late in the fourth quarter. Gage fell backwards after the pass, and Wilson hit him from behind, snapping Gage's head forward.

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Wilson was committed to the tackle and was not targeting Gage's head but the contact caused the Bucs player's head and neck to snap violently forward. Gage initially tried to stand up after the hit but was unable to do so as he lay motionless on the turf.

Players from both teams surrounded Gage as medical trainers tended to him. After several moments, trainers placed Gage on a backboard and eventually lifted him onto a cart, where he was taken off the field.

Bucs head coach Todd Bowles told reporters after the game that Gage was taken to a local hospital and was being evaluated for a concussion and neck injury. He had movement of his fingers on the field, according to Bowles.

Seen here, Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers players look on during an injury timeout for Russell Gage.
Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers players look on during an injury timeout for Russell Gage. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

“His fingers were moving when he was down there but I don’t know about the rest," the Bucs head coach said. Gage was initially listed as questionable prior to the game against the Cowboys after he injured his back on a touchdown catch in Week 18.

Players from both teams took a knee and prayed while medical personnel attended to Gage. Tom Brady, who threw the pass to Gage, stood near the medical staff before the game resumed.

Russell Gage flooded with messages after horror injury

The incident is the latest nasty on-field scare in the NFL after Buffalo Bills safety Hamlin collapsed during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals a fortnight ago, having suffered cardiac arrest. Gage's sickening injury sparked a wave of messages from concerned fans on social media as the NFL world prayed for his speedy recovery.

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