Keeping Sio Moore’s mother off a plane bound for Wisconsin was no easy task. Assunta Nimley-Phillips watched her son take a dramatic shot to the head on national television and remain facedown on the Lambeau Field turf for minutes that must’ve felt like hours.
Panic certainly built when the Raiders weakside linebacker get wheeled off on a stretcher. Moore gave a thumb’s up to the crowd, but that wasn’t good enough. Nimley-Phillips was headed for Green Bay.
The trip was unnecessary. X-rays on Moore’s neck were negative. Moore was quickly released from the hospital and allowed to fly home with the team. Relaying good news still took some work.
“The toughest part was calming my mom down,” Moore said on Monday. “She was ready to hop on an airplane, and I had to talk her out of that. I knew I was going to be okay, but I had to convince her of that and get everybody else settled.
“Once that happened, my main focus was getting comfortable again and trusting everything was going to be fine.”
That happened pretty quick. Moore was back in less than a week and practiced fully on Monday afternoon. If the week continues as it started, Moore will start Sunday’s regular-season opener against the New York Jets. That seemed unlikely in the heat of the moment.
“That was one of the most eye-opening moments for me,” Moore said. “I’ve never been on a stretcher, ever. Just going through all that was certainly scary, but I feel so blessed to have come out of all that without anything being really wrong.”
The experience have given Moore greater appreciation for even the little aspects of a game turned pretty cool job.
“I’ve always known that playing this game is an opportunity of a lifetime, but what happened in Green Bay really put things in perspective,” Moore said. “Going through my first real practice, I felt good and I wanted to take it all in and enjoy it.
“I’m getting ready to start my second season, which is an accomplishment in itself. But, when you realize how fast it can be taken from you, there’s greater value in everything you have the privilege to do. It’ll be even better when we go out to New York and get this win.”