The Seattle Seahawks lost a key member of the defense during the 23-20 loss against the Pittsburgh Steelers on October 17. Defensive end Darrell Taylor suffered a neck injury with 3:10 remaining in the fourth quarter, resulting in the medical staff carting him from the field.
The injury occurred on a second-and-one play from the Steelers’ 46-yard line. Running back Najee Harris rushed up the middle for three yards before Taylor and defensive tackle Al Woods brought him to the ground. Taylor remained on the field after the play came to an end, bringing the medical staff out to assess his condition. The NBC broadcast later showed that his head collided with Woods’ body.
Taylor moved his legs and arms as the medical staff determined the extent of his injury. The staff immobilized his head and neck area before lifting him onto the cart while players from both teams circled around to him to show their support.
The fans at Heinz Field sparked critical comments during the pause due to doing the wave. However, Ben Roethlisberger and other members of the team signaled for them to stop. The fans eventually grew quiet before giving applause to Taylor as he left the field.
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Taylor Headed to the Level I Trauma Center
Once the play resumed, sideline reporter Michelle Tafoya provided an update about Taylor’s condition. She reported that the medical staff loaded him into an ambulance and that he headed to UPMC Mercy and the Level I Trauma Center.
According to Tafoya, a member of the Seahawks medical staff accompanied Taylor in the ambulance. She added that the defender was moving all of his extremities, sparking relief among many viewers.
The 24-year-old Taylor missed his entire rookie season with a leg injury. He returned to action in 2021 and has appeared in every game. He has registered 12 tackles, four sacks, and three tackles for a loss.
“I pray Taylor is okay. God is strong he will help us over come all obstacles,” tweeted former Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier. The former first-round pick of the Steelers suffered a spinal contusion in December 2017 that left him temporarily disabled. He was able to regain his ability to walk unassisted after intensive rehabilitation efforts, but he ultimately announced his retirement in 2020.
Taylor Was the Latest Seahawks Player To Suffer an Injury
The frightening moment involving Taylor continued a negative trend for the Seattle Seahawks. The team lost multiple players to injury during the second half, putting extra pressure on the backups and creating concern among the coaching staff and fanbase.
Cornerback Sidney Jones left during the third quarter after he tackled wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud. He remained on the field before eventually getting up and leaving the field under his own power. The Seahawks announced that Jones was questionable while rookie Tre Brown replaced him on the field.
The injuries continued with guard Damien Lewis suffering a shoulder injury. The team initially said that Lewis was questionable before later declaring him out. Backup Jamarco Jones stepped into the lineup and finished out the game at the left guard position. Wide receiver Freddie Swain temporarily headed to the locker room with an issue of his own, forcing Tyler Lockett to return a fourth-quarter punt. Though Swain ultimately returned to the game.
Alex Collins also left the field after a holding penalty negated a long run. He remained off of the field while DeeJay Dallas and Travis Homer served as the top two options for the offense. The Seahawks did not initially provide a cause for his absence.