Indianapolis Colts linebacker Darius Leonard has missed the last three games due to a concussion he described as “very severe” in an eye-opening interview with The Athletic.
Finally cleared to return to practice on Monday, Leonard’s harrowing commentary about what he went through mentally and emotionally the past few weeks shows just how scary these injuries can be.
Per Stephen Holder of The Athletic, Leonard’s concussion symptoms began to dissipate last week. He was legitimately panicking about whether he would ever be the same after weeks of tormenting symptoms but “gained some peace of mind” after speaking with other teammates who have dealt with concussions.
“The third week,” Leonard said, “that’s when I really started thinking, ‘Wait a minute. Now I have a wife and kid. I’ve had a headache for three weeks. Will I ever be the same? Do I keep playing? You have those thoughts in the back of your head.”
For two weeks, Leonard was told to stay away from team facilities and shared he spent most of his time in a dark corner of his home to help stave off the debilitating symptoms he was experiencing.
“I finally got to sit in meetings toward the end of the second week, maybe the third week,” Leonard said. “It was terrible.”
Fatigue and headaches were still present even well over two weeks after the initial concussion. He shared that he believes he suffered the concussion on a hit he made against Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry.
Thankfully, Leonard has been cleared to practice and anticipates being able to play Sunday when the Colts take on the Houston Texans.