Hayden Hurst of the Carolina Panthers has been diagnosed with post-traumatic amnesia, according to his father. But the tight end wrote Thursday on social media that, although he doesn’t remember “up to four hours after the game,” the injury is not career-ending.

“I appreciate everyone reaching out & checking on me. I suffered a pretty nasty concussion against the Bears a few weeks ago & don’t remember up to 4 hours after the game,” he wrote on X. “Scary situation but the Panthers have been incredible walking me through this process.

“While it was scary, it is NOT career ending. I’m starting my return to play this week, so fingers crossed I make it back for the last few weeks! God Bless & Keep Pounding!!!!”

Panthers Falcons Football

Carolina Panthers tight end Hayden Hurst (81) celebrates his touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons during an NFL game Sunday, Sept. 10, 2023, in Atlanta. AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

His father had announced the injury Wednesday on X.

“Slow recovery, don’t know when he’ll be back,” Jerry Hurst wrote of his son, who has been sidelined for several weeks with a concussion. “Prayers appreciated!”

The post by Hurst’s father was shared the same day that Hurst, a 30-year-old in his sixth NFL season, returned to the practice field for the first time since getting injured in a Nov. 9 game at Chicago. He was said by the team to have participated in a limited capacity while wearing a red no-contact jersey.


“He’s working his way through the (concussion) protocol,” Panthers interim coach Chris Tabor said of Hurst Wednesday at a regularly scheduled news conference. “That was just another step to see where he’s at. We’ll get an evaluation at the end of today and see how he did.”

The Panthers did not comment publicly Wednesday on the claim made by Hurst’s father. The diagnosis, Jerry Hurst wrote, was made by an independent neurologist.

According to an essay shared in 2018 by England’s Hull University Teaching Hospitals, post-traumatic amnesia is “a transient state of confusion, disorientation and memory loss that occurs immediately following a traumatic brain injury.” It can last just a few minutes or, in some cases, can stretch for weeks or months. The length a patient suffers from it can point toward the severity of the original brain injury. The memory loss mainly affects post-injury events, and after recovery patients may retain “islands” of recollections from the affected period.

Hurst is in his first season with the Panthers after one year with the Cincinnati Bengals. A first-round pick in 2018 out of South Carolina, he began his NFL career with the Baltimore Ravens before being traded in 2020 to the Atlanta Falcons.

On an incomplete pass late in the fourth quarter of the Panthers’ Thursday night game against the Bears, Hurst took a hard hit and was driven to the ground by Chicago safety Jaquan Brisker. Hurst was slow to get up, but he remained in the game and, per the Athletic, was not placed in the concussion protocol until the next day.

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