Recently, New York Giants wide receiver Daniel Fells was diagnosed with a methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection.  Fells has since been sidelined for the rest of the season.  The Giants are taking aggressive precautions to stop the spread of infection among players, including conducting consultations with infectious disease specialists. 

MRSA is not new to National Football League (NFL) locker rooms.  In 2013, three members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were diagnosed with MRSA: guard Carl Nicks, kicker Lawrence Tynes, and cornerback Johnthan Banks.  Tynes, who asserts the infection ended his career, has filed a lawsuit against the Buccaneers, citing unsanitary conditions.

In 2003, the St. Louis Rams had a MRSA outbreak.  In 2006, Redskins defensive tackle Brandon Noble was diagnosed with MRSA. Like Tynes, Noble believes the infection was responsible for ending his career.

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MRSA is a serious, potentially life-threatening infection.  Reportedly, Daniel Fells was being treated for a chronic ankle condition when MRSA was discovered, and he is expected to make a full recovery. 

MRSA infections can occur in healthy people of all ages, and incidents are certainly not limited to the NFL.  However, this deadly bug continues to loom in locker rooms.  After all these years of identifying MRSA issues, perhaps it’s time the NFL provided mandatory protocols to protect against this silent, life-changing danger.

Do you think the NFL is doing a good job of managing MRSA? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.


  1. Graziano D. MRSA sidelines Giants tight end Daniel Fells for rest of season. website. Published October 3, 2015.  Accessed October 8, 2015.
  2. Babb K. Risk of MRSA skin infection still lurks in NFL 10 years after Brandon Noble’s case. website. Published August 10, 2014. Accessed October 8, 2015.