Broncos Cautious With Stokley

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Brandon Stokley acknowledged yesterday that he had actually suffered his 10th career concussion on his first catch against the Jaguars. It was not the third one as some think. He got that concussion after he lost his balance and fell to his knees.

In between, he scored his second TD of the season. "It happened on my first catch, I got my head slammed," the Denver Broncos' receiver said. "And then the touchdown, I got head-butted a few times from some teammates. So, that didn't help."

Stokley is used to having concussions. He had a real bad concussion when he was in college. He figures he has had three severe head injuries and seven minor concussions. That concussion was very similar to the one he received in college. No player wants to come out of the game. He has been in the NFL for ten years and it's very hard to come out of a game but sometimes you have to do that for your safety. I don't blame him for not wanting to come out of the game.

"And then on that last catch, all it was was a guy's hand, he was just trying to make sure I was down and he hit the back of my head as I was coming up," Stokley said. "And I got up and I was just walking to the sideline and just kind of lost equilibrium and just went down to my knees." Stokley didn't return to the game after that. He also realized after his first catch that he was hurt. "I knew something wasn't right. I was kind of foggy a little bit. And hey, you just keep playing hoping it's not too bad because those things happen all the time in the NFL, and just hoping you can keep playing through it and nothing else would happen," Stokley said.

"And then, after that last catch and I went down, I knew that it was a little bit more serious." Stokley said he was already feeling better Monday. His head also still wasn't clear. He also said he hoped to get cleared so he could practice this week because he doesn't want to miss playing in their game at New England Patriots on Monday night football next week.

Given his history and the league's crackdown on quick returns from head injuries, however, Stokley expects the Broncos to be extra cautious in allowing him to return to the field. They might let him return quicker than other people who have had concussions.

He'll have to pass a series of mental tests in order to return to action.
"I don't want to be a liability out there," Stokley said. "And I don't want to be a vegetable when I'm 50."

The Broncos were already missing Eddie Royal, Tony Scheffler and Selvin Young. Without Stokley, whose 11-yard touchdown catch capped an impressive opening drive, the Broncos were in disbelief. "It definitely makes our job hard as an offense because they're a big part of our offense," said receiver Brandon Marshall, who got gassed in the fourth quarter and kept going to the sideline for breathers while the Broncos were desperately trying to catch up in a game they lost 24-17. Stokley said he never suffered any headaches from this latest concussion, "just fogginess."

Writer and editor, Freddie Brister, is a former high school football coach of 25 years. His love of the game of football is reflected in his words and memories of growing up in the South and playing football in the back yard with his brother, cousins and neighborhood friends. His biggest thrill is watching former high school players he has coached play at the college level. His favorite pastime is watching NFL football on TV and attending the games in person every chance he gets. Freddie Brister is a huge fan of the NFL and the Denver Broncos. Check out his Denver Broncos merchandise and Denver Broncos collectibles

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