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Cheppy
10-31-2009, 03:14 PM
Steelers' Clark: Docs say I can play at Denver
Saturday, October 31, 2009
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Steelers safety Ryan Clark said today he's been cleared by doctors to play but remains unsure whether he will take the field in Denver a week from tomorrow.

"Basically, I've been cleared by all the doctors but the decision still hasn't been made," Clark said this afternoon in an interview on ESPN Radio 1250. "We still have time. Obviously it's a Monday night game, so it's a long way from now."

Clark has sickle-cell trait and his blood reacted so poorly in the exertion of playing in the thin Denver air with the Steelers in 2007 that he became almost deathly ill after the game. He wound up having his spleen and gall bladder removed, lost 30 pounds and missed the second half of the 2007 season.

He's been consulting with his doctors for a while about whether he can play in Denver again. He said he will practice all week and at some point decide whether to play.

"Coach and I have talked about it, the doctors talked abut it, my wife and I. We'll figure it out," Clark said in the radio interview. "I'll be there either way. I'll be at the game.

"When the decision is made, I'll let coach decide when to tell the media and everybody whether or not I'm going to play, and I'm going to kind of stay out of it from that standpoint, but I will make the decision.

"If we find out there is a risk, then I'm not going to play. Unless I can be told, 'Hey, you're fine, there's nothing going to happen to any other organs,' then I'm going to play, I'll go try to hurt people and have a great time.

"But if there are any unsure moments about it, I'll sit on the sidelines and wear a hat and coach."

Clark gave an interesting reason why he wants to play in Denver.

"I think kind of the competitor in me, the ego of a football player, it's not so much I want to go beat the Broncos, as I would like to come back fully from a situation that brught me near death and kind of conquer playing in a place that made me ill in that kind of way.

"But you have to take yourself out of it from that standpoint, realize you do have children, you do have a life and you have a career that you would like to be long, so you want to come out healthy."

While he said doctors may have cleared him, they still have not done so to his satisfaction.

"That's understanding the situation enough to know nothing's going to happen to me," Clark explained. "I mean, you can hear certain things, they can put papers in front of you and tests in front of you, but until you're completely comfortable with what you're hearing, it's going to be a tough decision.

"And right now I haven't taken in enough information to make a decision either way."

stillers4me
10-31-2009, 03:15 PM
Green is too hard to read

Edit: Thank you!.

Preacher
10-31-2009, 03:23 PM
I can see him suiting up, and sitting on the sidelines.

Play him in certain situations. Third down and longs, Late in the quarter and half...

Situations where there are going to be more throws deep.

However, I REALLY don't want him playing.

Cheppy
10-31-2009, 03:27 PM
"I'll be there either way. I'll be at the game."

He shouldn't make the trip if he's not going to play. That's my two cents.

Steelboy84
10-31-2009, 03:30 PM
"I'll be there either way. I'll be at the game."

He shouldn't make the trip if he's not going to play. That's my two cents.

Just hope he's not doing something he shouldn't.

Psyychoward86
10-31-2009, 04:00 PM
"I'll be there either way. I'll be at the game."

He shouldn't make the trip if he's not going to play. That's my two cents.

i agree. What the heck are you risking your life for sitting on the sidelines (albeit, watching your teammates). Heck, he might as well play if that's the case. But really, i dont want him to be anywhere near Denver when we play the Broncos. If the doctors say it's ok, it probably is, but there's way too much risk riding on the one game that i think he should just sit his butt home and watch us on t.v. Please don't give us a scare like last time. :hope:

stillers4me
10-31-2009, 04:06 PM
I don't think the trip is the problem but the exertion in that altitude is.

What did I get out of the article? Ryan's wife hasn't convinced him not to play yet. :chuckle:

GridironWarrior
10-31-2009, 04:19 PM
I rather he sit out. I don't want him to risk his health. Mundy would get the start or Carter?

BlastFurnace
10-31-2009, 04:28 PM
Don't Play!

It's not worth it.

jjpro11
10-31-2009, 05:01 PM
i think PFT said it best (for once). the Steelers should make the decision for him and not let him play. he gives it his all for this team week in and week out.. he is probably the nicest player to the fans on the entire team. i don't want to see him go out there and get sick or hurt.. and i don't think the Steelers should let him contemplate over this kind of a decision.

and he is the last person that should be trusting what doctors tell him.. and it sounds like he knows it too. after all, it was the Steelers doctors who misdiagnosed him and could have in effect killed him had he not gotten a second opinion.

ETL
10-31-2009, 05:09 PM
These doctors are very scared of law suits. They won't clear him with a small margin of error. He has a huge margin of error.

He's good to go in my view as I thought he would be.

Texasteel
10-31-2009, 05:30 PM
I just remember want happened the last time. If we plays I will be holding my breath not only Monday, but the rest of the week.

tony hipchest
10-31-2009, 05:35 PM
well were not gonna tell the broncos he is out before they even start putting in the game plan. their players will practice as if he is in there.

i dont think we want them drawing up plays targeting carter, so we say we have a full deck and don t show our hand.

i severely doubt he plays though.

steelerchad
10-31-2009, 05:37 PM
If you read the entire article Clark says if he plays he'll suit up and try and hurt people. You don't often get that honesty in a public statement. You'll usually get the "I'm not out there trying to hurt anybody" type of comment.
Love Clark and the way he plays, but this 1 game is not worth risking his life or even the rest of the season even if there's only a small chance. Sit this one out Ryan, there'll be skulls to crack next week vs. the Bungals.

Vis
10-31-2009, 06:16 PM
These doctors are very scared of law suits. They won't clear him with a small margin of error. He has a huge margin of error.

He's good to go in my view as I thought he would be.

No they aren't and they cleared him last year

jjpro11
10-31-2009, 06:35 PM
No they aren't and they cleared him last year

it was 2 years ago actually.. but yeah.. they f*cked up big time. the Steelers owe it to him to sit him out and not have to face this decision. hopefully they are just playing mind games with the Broncos at this point.

SteelC7
10-31-2009, 07:04 PM
i dont want him playing if he could get hurt, ryans a good player, its not like its troy and well be really messed up if he doesnt play, hes a good player, but it shouldnt impact the game as much as troy or ike would

HometownGal
10-31-2009, 07:42 PM
Why tempt fate and take a chance on becoming ill again or even worse? Sit it out Ryan and cheer your comrades on from the sidelines. :hope: Doctors aren't God. It's always better to be safe than sorry.

devilsdancefloor
10-31-2009, 08:50 PM
He needs to be in sweats for the night. why chance it the steelrs will need him the last 7 games and beyond!

GridironWarrior
10-31-2009, 10:59 PM
So who gets the start? Carter or Mundy? I saw Mundy in the Dime package against the Vikes and not Carter.

Cheppy
10-31-2009, 11:04 PM
If he's not playing, he shouldn't make the trip to Denver. Very simple..

ETL
10-31-2009, 11:07 PM
No they aren't and they cleared him last year

So every time a player suffers an unexpected physical ailment, then the physicians made a mistake by clearing him to play?

You're a retart!

$hit happens all the time and it's NOBODY's fault most of the time. However if it happened once before, then the doctors are clearly at fault.

Christian Snyder
10-31-2009, 11:09 PM
I'd rather see him sit this one out. No sense risking your season to play in 1 game. IMO

toughsticks87
10-31-2009, 11:32 PM
If he's not playing, he shouldn't make the trip to Denver. Very simple..

Exactly, the risk of injury is still there due to his condition. He should just stay home and watch the game.

Psyychoward86
10-31-2009, 11:42 PM
So every time a player suffers an unexpected physical ailment, then the physicians made a mistake by clearing him to play?

You're a retart!

$hit happens all the time and it's NOBODY's fault most of the time. However if it happened once before, then the doctors are clearly at fault.

it was unexpected, but certainly not out of the blue

Texasteel
11-01-2009, 06:02 AM
I think I would want him on the sidelines. I don't think that being in Denver was the problem. It was beating his body up in that thin air. I think he would feel better being there for the game, and his team mates would want him there as well. He is such a large part of this team, and he may ever see something going on that would help the D. BUT, if there is any question, I agree leave him in Pittsburgh.

Galax Steeler
11-01-2009, 06:10 AM
While I would love to see him play next Monday night I think the best thing is to not play. He is a football player and if there is any chance of him a playing I say he will. We still have Troy back there to help out Carter or Mundy so hopefully he will sit this one out.

Indo
11-01-2009, 12:17 PM
These doctors are very scared of law suits. They won't clear him with a small margin of error. He has a huge margin of error.

He's good to go in my view as I thought he would be.

Wow.
You just don't give up, do you?

He had Serious complications from his SCT last time. Why, oh wise one (just because you, too, probably have SCT) do you think that it won't happen again?

We doctors are not afraid of lawsuits. We make recommendations based on all of the available information and THE PATIENT makes the final decision about what he or she wants to do---about whether they consider the risk to be low or high.

I have posted in various threads in this forum about the risks to Clark and what could be done to minimize those risks. But the risk is real; it is unpredictable; and he may have absolutely no problems whatsoever. He may also have the worst complication---which is a fatal stroke.
Playing in the game is like playing Russian Roulette---he may get the bullet. He may get nothing.
How he feels about that risk (and its possible affect on his family) will determine what he decides to do.

If I was his doctor I would explain all of this to him---I would recommend that he doesn't play (out of concern for my patient and NOT because I am afraid of being sued) and then I would let him make his own decision and I would respect that decision, whatever it may be (realizing that we may be dealing with a BIG problem if he does have a complication)

stillers4me
11-01-2009, 12:21 PM
I hope Ryan will decide not to play. I believe it will rally the team to win it for him and to hopefully avoid an important playoff game in the near future in Denver without him.

And if we should lose the game.........oh, well. I'd rather lose the game and deal with that than lose the man's life.

solardave
11-01-2009, 12:37 PM
I can see him suiting up, and sitting on the sidelines.

Play him in certain situations. Third down and longs, Late in the quarter and half...

Situations where there are going to be more throws deep.

However, I REALLY don't want him playing.

I think we can win this one if he doesn't play. I'm sure he'll be there in support but I don't want to see him play either. As far as I'm concerned he's got nothing to prove. We all know how tough he is.

Vis
11-01-2009, 12:47 PM
So every time a player suffers an unexpected physical ailment, then the physicians made a mistake by clearing him to play?

You're a retart!

$hit happens all the time and it's NOBODY's fault most of the time. However if it happened once before, then the doctors are clearly at fault.

I'm not one making idiotic statements and assumptions regarding a medical staff. That would be you. The staff is not afraid of lawsuits. That is an incorrect and severely uninformed belief. The only pressure on the medical staff is that supplied by the team. It is a conflict that is unavoidable. That is why players seek independent medical advice.

SteelerEmpire
11-01-2009, 12:52 PM
I find it almost unacceptable for his doctor's to put this decision in Clark's hands knowing his vulnerabilities to the effects of the low pressure at high altitudes and physical exertion.... when his cells are in desperate need of oxygen. They should have at least "not recommended" him playing in the game knowing what happened last time.... If he still has sickle cell (and he does) its common sense....
My question is WHAT ABOUT HOLMES ?? He has the condition also....

X-Terminator
11-01-2009, 01:33 PM
I find it almost unacceptable for his doctor's to put this decision in Clark's hands knowing his vulnerabilities to the effects of the low pressure at high altitudes and physical exertion.... when his cells are in desperate need of oxygen. They should have at least "not recommended" him playing in the game knowing what happened last time.... If he still has sickle cell (and he does) its common sense....
My question is WHAT ABOUT HOLMES ?? He has the condition also....

Holmes did not have complications when he played there last time, other than some shortness of breath. That doesn't mean he wouldn't have complications this time. The opposite is true for Clark - he may not have complications this time when he did the last time. But in either case, it is NOT unacceptable for his doctors to put the decision in his hands. They can recommend that he not play, but they can't force him not to play. It's no different than anyone else who has a medical condition.

SteelersMongol
11-01-2009, 07:20 PM
This is not so cool, Clark. Not very wise at all.

jjpro11
11-01-2009, 08:15 PM
i hope at this point they are just messing with the Broncos.. i would be very disappointed in the Steelers organization if they let him play, regardless of what Clark decides to do.