Never Question An NFL Player’s Toughness Until You’ve Read This

by Chris Lingebach and Brian Tinsman

WASHINGTON — As teams transition into Week 2 of the NFL season, injuries will start playing a factor into matchups, both real and fantasy. Analysts and fans will discuss the true meaning of “questionable” and whether a player has the toughness to compete.

Toughness at the NFL level is something that non-players can barely understand, but it’s perhaps the No. 1 quality a player needs to even make it that far.

Former Ravens offensive tackle Eugene Monroe, who retired at 29 years old in July, wrote extensively about the perils of playing on Toradol for The Players’ Tribune several months back.

Toradol, also known as ketorolac or ketorolac tromethamine, is a non-steroid anti-inflammatory, and has become one of the worst-kept secrets of the game.

Players, Monroe said, would line up outside the training room before the game, waiting for their dose of Toradol. They called the line “the T Train.”

The T Train is nothing more than a bunch of really large guys waiting to pull their pants down to get shot in the butt with Toradol, a powerful painkiller that will help them make it through the game and its aftermath.

While playing on the drug in college at Virginia, Monroe says he once tore his labrum during a game, but the powerful drug masked the pain so well he hadn’t realized the extent of the damage until after the game. He played out the remainder of the season with the help of painkillers.

“I played the rest of the year while being treated with a combination of pharmaceuticals and physical therapy,” Monroe wrote. “When the season was over, my labrum was surgically repaired and I began a steady course of opioids and anti-inflammatories.”

Former Washington Redskins offensive lineman Will Montgomery appeared on 106.7 The Fan with Chad Dukes and talked about the mentality required to play all 16 games in a season, which he did five times in his career.

“You almost just have to let your body go numb. You just have to realize that, once the season starts, you’re gonna have a helmet shot to your ribs, you’re gonna have somebody step on your toe and it’s hard to walk,” he said. “A lot of times throughout the season, I don’t feel good to go until Friday, so that’s why some of these Thursday night games are ridiculous, because you’re still nursing those bumps and bruises from the previous week and it’s game day. It is crazy and it is hard. That’s why a lot of these guys go on these ice baths, they have massage therapists; they do everything in their power to get their bodies right.”

“It is crazy and it is hard. That’s why a lot of these guys go on these ice baths, they have massage therapists; they do everything in their power to get their bodies right.”

Montgomery also discussed his experience with the “T-Train” with Dukes and Chris Russell.

“If you can get to game day, your adrenaline, a lot of times, will take over–or a little thing called Toradol–which a lot of times people are popping those things out like candy, even though I don’t know if they’re supposed to or not,” Montgomery explained.

“The guys who take Toradol, they says don’t even feel the pain from the game until Wednesday or Thursday anyway, because their bodies just stay numb.

“So they go into a constant cycle of taking the Toradol, not feeling anything Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Then Thursday rolls around and they feel sore for some reason. They’re like, what’s going on? Some guys would take Toradol during the week just to get them through practice

“At least 50 percent of guys are taking Toradol on a weekly basis.”

 

Listen to Montgomery’s full take on injuries and Toradol:

More from Chris Lingebach
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