Ex-Huskers QB Adrian Martinez details broken jaw, frustration Nebraska let injury news go public
It’s no secret Adrian Martinez had to tough out some injuries during Nebraska’s 2021 season. The star quarterback battled through a broken jaw, an ankle and shoulder injury and other issues over the course of the year.
Nebraska might have finished 3-9, but Martinez proved to be the epitome of what the football program is supposed to idealize in Lincoln: toughness. That doesn’t mean there weren’t some frustrations, though.
During a recent episode of the Athletes Unfiltered podcast, Martinez talked about his jaw injury and also about the frustration he felt when Nebraska made the news public. For the senior quarterback, it was something he wanted to keep quiet.
“I was willing to do it for the team and for what we were trying to accomplish,” Martinez said. “I felt like it was a necessary sacrifice. And that meant after games taking the bands out and trying to stay as disciplined with it as possible and keeping it as low-key as possible. Not very many people could know about it.”
Martinez detailed what went through his mind when it was revealed he was dealing with a broken jaw following a loss to Ohio State.
“One of our media guys came up to me and was like, ‘Hey, just so you know, Coach Frost just addressed your broken jaw and it’s out officially now. And I was a little shocked. Obviously, we had just lost the game and that wasn’t something I was necessarily prepared to talk about, and had any knowledge was going to be revealed. So it was definitely a surprise to me, but I found out right then, and then seconds later I was on the podium.
“My grandparents didn’t even know. My grandma’s texting me like, ‘Hey, you have a broken jaw.’ Like, ‘Yeah, yeah. Sorry you had to find out over a (expletive) broadcast on FOX, or a press conference postgame.”
Martinez said the biggest reason he kept it quiet was so that opponents weren’t aware of the situation. While he wanted to play, he wanted to do so as safely as possible.
Martinez concluded his final season at Nebraska with 2,863 passing yards, 525 rushing yards and 27 total touchdowns. He transferred to Kansas State following the conclusion of the 2021 campaign.