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Johnny Knox | Wide Receiver | #13

Team: Unsigned Free Agent
Age / DOB:  (31) / 11/3/1986
Ht / Wt:  6'0" / 185
College: Abilene Christian
Drafted: 2009 / Rd. 5 (140) / CHI

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Free agent Johnny Knox has decided to retire from football, telling the Chicago Sun-Times he's "moving on and going forward."
It's a sad end to a once promising career. According to the Sun-Times, Knox is still walking with a limp 14 months after his spinal fusion operation, and "struggles to sit or stand" comfortably. "I was centimeters away from being paralyzed, so just sitting here and talking, I’m appreciative of that," Knox said Wednesday. "Just the hard work that I had to put in. Just to be able to stay in and do everything in my daily life that I used to do." Only 26 years old, the former fifth-round pick ends his career with 133 catches for 2,214 yards and 12 touchdowns over 45 games. Wed, Feb 13, 2013 07:07:00 PM

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Multiple sources tell the Chicago Tribune that free agent Johnny Knox is "unlikely to play again."

Officially, Knox sustained a thoracic-lumbar junction fracture-dislocation with neurological involvement back in Week 15 of the 2011 season. "He had to work himself back up to where he could even walk. He had to work to get himself up out of bed," former position coach Darryl Drake said. The nerve damage and instability in Knox's back have capped his athletic ability and speed. At 6'0/185, those are two attributes he couldn't afford to lose.
Wed, Feb 13, 2013 09:25:00 AM

Free agent Johnny Knox's agent says he plans to play in 2013.

"He’s going with the mindset that he’s playing in 2013," Knox's agent said. Knox is still recovering from the spinal fusion operation he underwent in December 2011, and has an "important physical assessment in late March." Knox is easy to root for, but is facing long odds of returning to the football field in 2013.
Tue, Feb 12, 2013 02:22:00 PM

Bears officially terminated the contract of WR Johnny Knox.

Knox missed the entire 2012 season thanks to fractured vertebrae, raising the possibility that his rookie deal would be extended by one year. It's not happening. The Bears are simply moving on, a sign that Knox still hasn't regained the raw speed and athleticism that made him such an intriguing deep threat and kick return prospect. He'll have to prove his health before latching on elsewhere. The spinal fusion surgery Knox underwent roughly 14 months ago has put his career in serious jeopardy.
Tue, Feb 12, 2013 10:33:00 AM

ESPN Chicago confirms that Bears WR Johnny Knox will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

We read in-season speculation that Knox's salary would "toll" to 2013 because he spent 2012 on PUP, but that won't happen. After missing the entire season with a fractured vertebrae in his back, Knox's health status is the biggest concern for his market appeal. The 26-year-old is a quality deep threat when healthy.
Fri, Jan 25, 2013 12:46:00 AM

Bears kept Johnny Knox (back) on the reserve/PUP list, ending his season.

Knox is slowly making progress from last December's surgery to repair fractured vertebrae. He's in the final year of his rookie contract, but a provision in the new CBA allows teams to retain the rights of their players that spend the entire year on PUP. Therefore, the Bears could bring Knox back next season for $1.26 million and give him a chance to prove his health.
Tue, Nov 6, 2012 09:40:00 AM

Johnny Knox (PUP, back) remains unlikely to play this season.

Knox lost 30 pounds following surgery to repair fractured vertebrae last December. He's slowly working his way back into shape, but playing football is a whole other story. Knox would do well just to be ready for 2013 training camp.
Wed, Oct 31, 2012 10:28:00 AM

Johnny Knox (PUP, back) reiterated Friday that he's unsure whether he'll be activated by the Bears this season.

We're not optimistic. "I haven't heard," Knox said. "The last thing I heard was that I was going on PUP back in training camp. That's the last thing I heard." Knox says he's upped his rehab from surgery to repair a fractured vertebrae "here and there," but doesn't appear to be making tremendous strides. "I'm out there running, moving a little bit better," said Knox. "But not too much different from the last time we talked."
Fri, Oct 5, 2012 08:53:00 PM

Bears placed WR Johnny Knox (neck) on reserve/PUP.

He's ineligible to play in the first six regular season games, and the reporters in Chicago don't expect Knox to return at all this year. While Knox has made steady progress from spinal fusion surgery, the extensive rehab and recovery probably won't allow him to be ready until 2013.
Sun, Aug 26, 2012 01:48:00 PM

Johnny Knox (back surgery) opened Bears camp on the active/PUP list.

Knox will assuredly stay on PUP into the regular season, disqualifying him for the first six games. We'd be a bit surprised if he played at all this year.
Wed, Jul 25, 2012 03:11:00 PM

Bears GM Phil Emery indicated that Johnny Knox is making "steady progress" in his return from career-threatening back surgery.

"He's able to do all the lifting, he's doing quite a bit of rehab, he's doing some light running," Emery said. "He is making steady progress towards being back on the team." According to the Chicago Tribune's Vaughn McClure, Knox is making "tremendous strides" but is still expected to start the season on the PUP list.
Tue, Jul 24, 2012 07:37:00 PM

Johnny Knox (back surgery) remains without a timetable for a return to football activities.

"Rehab is going well," said Knox. "I'm not trying to rush things and mess things up any worse, so I'm just taking it day by day." Still significantly under his playing weight, Knox concedes, "I've got a lot of work to do." Although he's been jogging, Knox has yet to begin running, six months removed from surgery.
Thu, Jun 21, 2012 09:34:00 PM

Teammate Devin Hester believes "it's going to be a miracle" to get Johnny Knox (back surgery) "back to normal."

"I'm going to stick with him, encourage him and make sure that he doesn't give up," said Hester, who nearly broke down talking about Knox's long road back. The severe spinal cord injury leaves Knox's 2012 season very much in doubt. Even if he turns the corner by next offseason, it sounds like there's no guarantee that he will recapture pre-injury form.
Thu, May 31, 2012 06:35:00 PM

Bears WR Johnny Knox (back surgery) acknowledges he could miss all or part of the 2012 season.

After losing 30 pounds and regaining 10 in rehab, Knox is still a long way from participating in practices. Although he's graduated to jogging, Knox has yet to run routes. "My main focus is in the weight room. I'm not in a rush," explained Knox. "This is my spine, the core of my body I'm dealing with. It's not my knee, ankle or shoulder. I'm taking my time." Knox remains without a timetable to return.
Thu, May 24, 2012 05:51:00 PM

According to ESPN Chicago's Mike Wright, Johnny Knox (back surgery) looked "very frail" on the practice field in OTAs.

Knox revealed that he's lost 30 pounds since last year. After major surgery to stabilize his vertebra on December 19, Knox is in danger of missing the entire season. Already a relatively skinny player, the fact that he's not staying muscle bound suggests Knox doesn't plan on playing football anytime soon.
Wed, May 23, 2012 02:20:00 PM

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