Eye patches and blurred vision: Cardinals LB Zaven Collins describes ‘freak’ injury

Sep 28, 2023, 4:31 PM

Zaven Collins at practice...

Arizona Cardinals LB Zaven Collins runs through drills during practice on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023, in Tempe. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

Arizona Cardinals linebacker Zaven Collins will be wearing a dark visor on the field for the foreseeable future, but it beats an eye patch.

Collins exited Sunday’s game against the Dallas Cowboys after getting poked where he described as the muscles above his right eye.

The linebacker said he was struggling to see out of it, and he watched the rest of the game inside out of one eye.

“It was a freak accident. I saw the doctors, they’re like, ‘Yeah we’ve never really seen this before,'” Collins told reporters at practice on Thursday. “I looked in the mirror, and I did not like what I saw. It was weird, this eye was straight, this eye was pointing straight up in the air, so it was all over the place.”

Collins said his vision started to get back to normal after a couple days, and he was a full participant at practice on Wednesday.

He said the visor helps with some blurriness out of the side of his eye and protects him as he recovers. He doesn’t anticipate wearing it for the rest of his career but at least until he feels comfortable again.

“I’m telling you, this right eye was all over the place, I was seeing double of everything,” Collins said.

Collins said he wore an eye patch for a few days after the game, and he had people sending him pirate emojis to bring some light to the situation.

The third-year defender explained what he perceived happened on the play in the third quarter.

“Sometimes offensive tackles flash their hands at your face to try and stop your charge or redirect you,” Collins explained. “I think he just got his fingertips down … so whenever he did that, it just hit me right in the face.”

Edge rusher Dennis Gardeck also got poked and had a black eye, Collins said.

Collins recorded a sack and a tackle for loss before exiting Arizona’s 28-16 victory.

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