Foot injury ends rookie RB Travis Etienne’s season

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Football really is the cruelest of sports. Its latest victim is promising Jacksonville rookie running back Travis Etienne whose season is ending before it begins. Etienne was placed on injured reserve Tuesday after suffering a major foot injury in Monday night’s game against New Orleans.

With surgery, Etienne will be out at least 5-6 months. It’s a devastating blow to both the Jaguars and Etienne who entered the NFL with eyes on being an immediate impact dual threat rusher.  The Clemson product was drafted 25thoverall in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Etienne’s injury elevates the status of James Robinson, the undrafted back who shocked the NFL world by amassing 1070 yards and seven touchdowns in his 2020 rookie campaign. Even with last season’s productivity, Robinson doesn’t come with the same skill set and promise as Etienne, hence Urban Meyer’s desire to use a first-round pick on the electrifying Etienne.

In addition to Robinson, the Jags have sizeable veteran back Carlos Hyde on the roster. The 30-year-old journeyman last played for the Jags in 2018. He topped 1000 yards as a member of the Houston Texans in 2019. 

Etienne is hardly alone when it comes to season-ending injuries in the preseason. The Jets lost defensive end Carl Lawson to a ruptured Achilles in a joint practice with the Packers.  Falcons’ backup quarterback AJ McCarron suffered a torn ACL in a preseason game against the Dolphins. Rams running back Cam Akers tore his Achilles before training camp began. There are more and there will be more because football is heartless.