What’ll It Take to Get Matt Forte’s Toe Back on the Field?

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It’s been said of a running back that when they don’t actually possess the football, they have to pretend they do. Fake others out. Make the other team go after him - the decoy. Running backs run, catch, pass, block, and are some of the busiest players on the football field.

It’s hard to see such a valuable player take a hit that knocks them out of the game completely. But it happens pretty often, most recently to Matt Forte of the New York Jets. He’s been out since the third game of this season with turf toe. Yes, it’s a common injury, but that doesn’t always mean it’s easy to recover from.

What is turf toe?

Turf toe is a sports injury - essentially a sprained toe. It’s a hyperextension of the ligaments in the big toe - “hyper” meaning too much or too far. Overstretched ligaments in the big toe happen a lot in football, soccer, and other sports played on artificial turf. If you compare turf to grass, you’ll find that turf has much less “give.” Turf is the culprit behind toes that jam into the ground, stick, and bend too far unnaturally - like when a running back cuts and turns quickly. Matt Forte left his toe behind in the third quarter of that game.

Why it’s a difficult injury

Like any sprain, turf toe has different levels of severity. If Forte merely stretched a ligament, he may be back on the field soon. But if he tore a ligament or a tendon, either partially or fully, it’s going to take a lot longer to heal. Turf toe may even require surgery.


If you suspect you’ve sprained your big toe, your first course of action should include





·anti-inflammatory medicine such as ibuprofen.

If symptoms like pain, swelling, and bruising don’t subside within a couple of days, or if they get worse, contact us at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center in Howell, New Jersey. Our expert podiatrists Dr. Samantha Boyd, Dr. Hal Ornstein, Dr. Joseph Saka, and Dr. Katy Statler, and our physical therapist Valerie Gregory, MSPT, CKTP, have a number of methods such as taping and orthotic devices to guide you toward a speedy recovery. If you live in Howell, Lakewood, Jackson, or anywhere in Monmouth County, give us a call at (732) 905-1110.