Thirty-one years ago Friday, one of the scariest moments in NFL history took place when Giants linebacker Lawrence Taylor sacked Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann and visibly broke the lower part of his right leg.
In an excerpt on ESPN.com from his book “My Giant Life” co-authored by Williams Wyatt, Taylor said that he’d seen worse hits on film, but that he knew Theismann was hurt badly. He famously waved toward the Redskins sideline calling for help.
“Initially, some of the Redskins thought I was taunting after the sack. That obviously wasn’t the case,” Taylor said.
The severity of Theismann’s injury wasn’t apparent in live action on the Monday Night Football telecast. But in those days the reverse angle was still fairly new, and it revealed the gruesome way that Theismann’s leg bent.
The sack fractured the tibia and fibula in Theismann’s right leg, and he never played again.
“I have never watched the play, don’t (want) to watch it, and I never will watch it. I saw it in person. I don’t want to see it again,” Taylor said.
It’s a play that will live forever on YouTube even though it happened about two decades before YouTube was invented.