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Gates & Plantar Fasciitis

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Concudan, Aug 10, 2011.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Meh... Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 5, 2006
    Much has been made this off season about Antonio Gate’s medical condition. The start Tight End for the San Diego Chargers has been suffering with acute plantar fasciitis since last season. Face it, in a game where you are asked to run down field, make cuts and jump for the ball, your feet are important. Any type of foot pain can hinder the ability of a player to perform at their best. That is what plantar fasciitis, simply put it is foot pain.

    The Plantar Fascia is a thick band of tissue on the bottom of the foot that connects the heel to the toes. When that band is overused, overstretched or as in the case of what occurred during the match against the Tennessee Titans in the 2010 season, torn, severe pain occurs. There are two types of plantar fasciitis, surgical and non-surgical. Pain has been known to continue despite treatment. Some people may need surgery. Surgery has its own risks. When dealing with that area of the foot you are not always able to fix the problems completely.

    Gates has actually suffered through foot pain for several seasons. Gates said that he was 85% when he reported to camp this season. The Chargers on August 1st placed him on the PUP, or Physically Unable to Perform list. This allows him to rehab and yet still be part of team meetings.

    There is a chilling fact about plantar; it may never go away.

    Gates made the following comments shortly after reporting to camp this season. "Going forward, the main thing is trying to control it," Gates told the San Diego Union-Tribune. "Plantar fasciitis is one of those things. It's not like an injury. You just hope and pray it goes away. The recovery part is the (unknown). I don't know if that will ever go away."

    Gates obviously knows the facts of the injury, as he has access to some of the best doctors outside of the organization money can buy. This has not impacted his projected fantasy football status. He is still one of the top five Tight Ends in the league. It can be said that an 85% Antonio Gates is better than most other Tight Ends in the league.

    There is a ray of hope for Chargers fans, and fans of a healthy Antonio Gates on your Fantasy Football team. According to the Mayo Clinic, About 90 percent of the people who have plantar fasciitis recover with conservative treatments in just a few months. Gates suffered a tear which is close to one of the surgical procedures to fix plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is detached from the heel bone. It's generally an option only when the pain is severe and all else fails. Or if you are a professional athlete that needs to get back into the game, and shape quickly.

    One problem Gates and other professional athletes have is that they have to stay in shape. If the plantar fasciitis is acute, you can rest assured that there has not bee a lot of running done in the off season. Physical strain can delay the healing process, so can doing nothing. According to what I have read, you have to constantly stretch the plantar fascia to prevent it from stiffening which will cause further pain.

    Gates has said if the season started today he would be playing. He would probably be receiving injections into his heel to help cope with the pain. We have to take a wait and see approach on what this does to his career and productivity.

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