Common Injuries in Professional Football Quarterbacks


Purpose of Review

Professional football quarterbacks are at particular risk for upper extremity injuries due to the physical demands of their position coupled with the inherent risks associated with professional football. This review sought to evaluate current clinical literature to better characterize the injury profile unique to this athletic population.

Recent Findings

Shoulder injuries are the most prevented upper extremity injury among professional football quarterbacks. The quarterback position is disproportionately impacted by shoulder injuries when compared to professional athletes at other positions. Moreover, contrary to other professional throwing athletes, the majority of upper extremity injuries in the professional quarterback result from direct contact as opposed to the throwing motion.


The injury profile among professional quarterbacks is unique compared to other positions and other overhead professional throwing athletes. Overall, a paucity of high quality clinical evidence exists to support the management of injuries in this elite population.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Asheesh Bedi.

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All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

Additional information

Investigation performed at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA

This article is part of the Topical Collection on Injuries in Overhead Athletes

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Kirsch, J.M., Tyrrell Burrus, M. & Bedi, A. Common Injuries in Professional Football Quarterbacks. Curr Rev Musculoskelet Med 11, 6–11 (2018).

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  • Professional football
  • NFL
  • Quarterback
  • Upper extremity
  • Shoulder
  • Injuries