The injury is a big blow for both Wilkerson, who wanted to prove he's still a top-flight defensive lineman, and the Packers, who were hoping Wilkerson would help get them back to the postseason by rediscovering his prior form. From 2011-15, Wilkerson racked up 36.5 sacks and 184 tackles in 77 games. But from 2016-17, his production dipped to eight sacks and 59 tackles in 28 games. As CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora chronicled, injuries likely played a role in his decline.
The right fibula fracture he sustained in the final game of the 2015 season had a lingering impact on his lower body; at 6-feet-4, 315 pounds, the break down near his ankle was significant. Wilkerson at times felt like he was playing with one foot and one ankle during the 2016 season and the healing was slow going. His initial burst -- once driven by speed and force -- was sapped with his right ankle/foot not able to fire like normal. In 2017 he played through a difficult shoulder injury as well as a broken toe, and by December it was clear his time in New York was waning.
Once again, an injury will cost him. He hadn't yet recorded a sack with the Packers and the injury will prevent him from doing so this season -- and possibly forever considering he'll become a free agent again after the season. Wilkerson's future beyond this season is unknown. He'll still be 29 when the season ends, so he'll undoubtedly get a chance to latch onto a team in the offseason, but his career has been trending in the wrong direction for a few seasons now.
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- Joined:Mon Apr 26, 2004 5:51 pm
- Pro Bowl Elite Player
- Joined:Sun May 17, 2015 2:52 am
Sad man, hes my age and I was watching the game and saw the play when he got hurt. When I saw him in tears you saw a career that might be over and or never the same again. I hope he has a good recovery