The Problem During the Game
Everyone knows Achilles’ story of vulnerability but the Great toe joint (aka 1st MPJ, big toe joint, piggy that goes to market) may be the real weak link in the foot.
The big toe joint has retired a long list of elite and pro athletes. Deion Sanders, Jack Lambert (old school), and Shaq are just a few. So if you think this is a minor problem I dare you to call anyone of these guys a wimp to their face.
The next on the list may be Patrick Mahomes. There was a definite change in play from the AFC championship game. His passing accuracy was not the same and his mobility, Patrick’s major weapon, was lost. He was not just a step slow but 2-3 steps slow – for him. His romps to the sidelines for first downs were few and his ability to protect himself and get out of the pocket were significantly affected.
So what can go wrong with the great toe to make it less than great?
I have no insider info or tips but I do see a lot of these injuries and this is what it looks like to me. There was a unilateral short stride and restricted toe off. I did not get a good view but it looked like he had a modified shoe to protect motion of the great toe joint. This is a classic parent of a hallux Limitus deformity (a.k.a. “turf toe” or Hallux Rigidus) with an OCD (osteochondral defect). In other words a really stiff toe that has a divot taken out of the cartilage on the first metatarsal head.