As a member of ESPN's crew calling Thursday Night games this season for college football, former Bengals linebacker David Pollack returned to Cincinnati this weekend. ESPN is covering the University of Cincinnati's game against the University of Miami. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis asked Pollack to speak with his current Bengals to share an important message:
"Live in the moment. Making the most of the moment,' said Pollack as he waited for Lewis and the men to come off the practice field Thursday. "I can talk about how quickly it was gone for me and just maximize it. Live it. Be it."
As Bengals.com beat writer Geoff Hobson points out, Pollack's career suddenly ended after breaking his neck while tackling Browns running back Reuben Droughns during the second week of the 2006 regular season. Pollack's career ended with 16 games played, 22 tackles and 4.5 quarterback sacks.
"God has a plan," Pollack said on Thursday at Paul Brown Stadium. "We’re all on a journey to find out what it is. But I expected to be here longer. I wanted to be here longer. They use that pick on you and they put their trust in you and you feel like a failure."
At the time of the injury in 2006, Dr. Anthony Guanciale, director of orthopedic spine surgery at University of Cincinnati Hospital said, "The main thing is he does have a C-6 (vertebra) fracture." It was during our first season covering the Bengals at Cincy Jungle. "His fracture was mild to moderate. His neurological status is normal. He has no spinal cord involvement or injury."
Pollack was part of the 2005 class that included linebacker Odell Thurman, wide receiver Chris Henry and return specialist Tab Perry.
Cincinnati's 34-17 Week 2 win over the Browns in 2006 was costly, having lost starting center Rich Braham to a career-ending injury and Perry to a hip injury that reduced his overall effectiveness.