Nick Bosa having elements of a high ankle sprain is dissapointing. There’s no way around it. And now that he’s out for the preseason (and possibly some of the regular season), the “Nick Bosa is injury-prone” narrative is back in full swing.
OK, easy there. This particular injury isn’t going to fit that narrative. Yes, the Bosas have a history of injuries and it’s been a concern. This isn’t going to prove either point.
Yes, Nick Bosa had his abdominal/groin injury in college. Yes, he tore his ACL in high school. Those injuries can support the narrative if you wish. You can use the hamstring injury during OTAs if you must. Leave this injury out. And just for clarification: before his abdominal injury in college, Bosa had two seasons with double-digit starts. So the ACL in high school, durability for two years, then the abdominal injury.
Now, let’s go to the NFL and this particular setback. Did Bosa suffer this in the open field while running down a halfback?
Did Bosa gang tackle someone and break his arm by smashing it against them?
Did Bosa dive for a fumble and shatter his collarbone just by the sheer impact of the earth?
Bosa had a 200+ pound teammate fall onto his leg. Kyle Shanahan mentioned the knee had some action in the incident as well. Getting out of a drop like that without a ding seems unlikely. Kyle Shanahan seems to support this notion when he was asked about it during his press conference:
“I go back to his history and I think the guy stayed on the field throughout college. I mean, look, he played 12 games his freshman year, I think 13 his sophomore year, I think he played in three his next year and he had a surgery to repair his, I think his oblique, that probably was a pretty good decision for him, too. So, when you go back to that decision, he played game-in and game-out until that year and now we have a guy come in and someone landed on his leg and that doesn’t make me say someone’s injury-prone because he had one serious injury in college and he tore his ACL sometime in high school like 60-percent of the players out there.”
When a large football player lands on someone’s leg for damage, that doesn’t make the victim injury prone. It makes them someone at mercy to the laws of physics. It’s a huge disappointment that this injury has to happen to Bosa, but the good part is it’s not a full-blown high ankle sprain. Now this could go somewhere else and Bosa doesn’t come into the lineup until Week 10, or he misses a couple of games, if at all. It’s an unfortunate set of circumstances, but circumstances that don’t fit the Bosa is injury-prone narrative.
It could have been a lot worse like Shanahan says. When Shanahan mentions Bosa, it brings fears of the alternative where instead of an ankle, it’s a torn one ligament 49ers fans are familiar with. Thankfully that wasn’t the case.
Whether Bosa is injury-prone or not is yet to be decided. This high ankle sprain is unfortunate, but not part of the argument.