Doctors rush to save NFL player Zach Miller's leg after gruesome knee injury

Miller undergoes successful surgery to stabilize knee

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

NEW ORLEANS – Surgeons rushed to save Zach Miller’s left leg Sunday evening after the 33-year-old Chicago Bears tight end suffered a gruesome knee injury during a game at New Orleans.

Miller dislocated his knee in the third quarter when he landed with the ball in the end zone. The play was originally called a touchdown, but overturned after an official’s review.   

Replays showed Miller’s knee bent in the wrong direction as he came down with the ball. He immediately grabbed his knee after the play.

Miller was rushed off the field and underwent emergency surgery in New Orleans to repair a damaged artery in his leg.

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported Monday morning that vascular surgeons were called to prevent the possibility of Miller’s leg having to be amputated. The operation included grafting tissue from his other leg to repair the damaged artery. 

According to the Bears official Twitter account, the surgery was successful and surgeons stabilized Miller's injury.

The injury is considered to be one of the most serious knee injuries possible. Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater suffered a similar knee injury in August 2016 and has not played in a game since. 

The Chicago Tribune spoke to Dr. Andrew Hoel, a vascular surgeon and assistant professor at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine, about the severity of the injury. 

Hoel told the Tribune that the main artery that gives blood to the lower leg is located right behind the knee. It can be stretched or torn and cause a person to lose blood flow as a result. 

Miller has played in the NFL since 2009.

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