Dolphins defensive tackle Kendrick Norton was released from the hospital Thursday, two weeks after his left arm was amputated at the scene of a traffic accident in Miami in the early morning hours of July 4. Norton reportedly underwent six surgeries while at Jackson Memorial Hospital, the final one just three days ago.
Initial reporting suggested that Norton was cut off at the interchange of the Dolphin Expressway and the Palmetto Expressway (State Road 826), causing the accident. That turns out to have been untrue, at least according to the official investigation: The Florida Highway Patrol’s crash report, as summarized by the Miami Herald, found that Norton “made an improper lane change” onto the ramp for southbound 826 and clipped the right side of a Maserati, causing Norton’s pickup truck to careen into a concrete barrier and roll onto its right side, before coming “to final rest on its roof facing southwest.” The report reportedly also found that neither Norton nor his passenger were wearing seatbelts, although the passenger was unharmed.
Norton’s medical expenses have reportedly been covered by the NFL’s insurance policy, but his playing career is over. Norton acknowledged as much last week in a conversation with Peter D’Oench of CBS Miami:
“To be here, I am alive. One thing keeps me going and that is that I am still able to be here. Seeing my family is so important. It is very good that I have this support system. It keeps me strong and it keeps me tall.”
“But I realize that I will not be able to play for anyone. We are working past that, you know. That reality is sinking in. I am alive and I am grateful.”