There aren’t many overt symbols in The Blind Side; however, one exception is the horrific injury that Joe Theismann sustains in a 1985 game with the New York Giants. During the game, Theismann, the star quarterback of the Washington Redskins, is tackled by a star linebacker for the Giants named Lawrence Taylor. Taylor is so big and so fast that he breaks Theismann’s leg, ending his career. As Lewis sees it, Theismann’s legendary injury is a symbol for the rethinking of the game of football that took place in the eighties and nineties. Around this time, coaches realized that they needed to do a better job of protecting their players from tackles like Lawrence Taylor—and, therefore, needed to spend more money on big left tackles who could protect the quarterbacks’ blind sides.
Joe Theismann’s Injury Quotes in The Blind Side
Four other players, including, oddly, the Redskins’ John Riggins, pile on. They’re good for dramatic effect but practically irrelevant. The damage is done by Taylor alone. One hundred and ninety-six pounds of quarterback come to rest beneath a thousand or so pounds of other things. Then Lawrence Taylor pops to his feet and begins to scream and wave and clutch his helmet with both hands, as if in agony.