Dennis Byrd tackles spinal injury - former New York Jets lineman's rehabilitation from paralyzing injury
In the final night before the AFC Divisional game against the Patriots, Rex Ryan brought in former Jets defensive lineman Dennis Byrd to speak to the team.
With Ryan’s words serving as the backdrop, he said little Saturday, despite his penchant for fiery speeches delivered the night before each game. Instead, Ryan ceded the floor to Dennis Byrd, the former Jet who was initially paralyzed by a career-ending neck injury in 1992.
A few days later, he stood in front of the New York Jets and provided what wide receiver Braylon Edwards called on Twitter "the most inspirational message of my life."
Byrd, who recovered to walk again after breaking his neck in a game, gave a moving speech Saturday night at the team hotel as the Jets prepared for their playoff game against the rival New England Patriots.
The spinal cord and the brain make up the body's central nervous system (CNS)--the place where all body functions, like tackling a quarterback, are coordinated.