Dave Stinebaugh’s robot shoulder tattoo

August 12, 2013
(Dan Steinberg/The Washington Post)
(Dan Steinberg/The Washington Post)

Maryland tight end Dave Stinebaugh has a well-documented history of shoulder injuries and shoulder surgeries. Our Alex Prewitt wrote about it in the spring:

The Terrapins list four tight ends on their roster. Three are either redshirt sophomores (Daniel Adams) or redshirt freshmen (P.J. Gallo and Brian McMahon). And then there’s Stinebaugh, the group’s Methuselah, a walking game of “Operation.” After redshirting his freshman year, Stinebaugh missed seven games in 2010 due to medial collateral ligament and shoulder injuries. He sat out all of 2011, first in the spring while recovering from shoulder surgery, then again in the fall. Last season, Stinebaugh appeared mostly on special teams in 11 games. He made three tackles and blocked one kick. So yes, it’s been some time since he’s been “that guy.”

The Baltimore Sun’s Josh Vitale wrote a similar story in the spring.

The senior is the most veteran of the team’s four tight ends, and it seems like his shoulder troubles are finally behind him. Coach Randy Edsall wasn’t shy about saying what his role would be next season, either. At tight end, Stinebaugh is “the guy.”…”The things I’ve been through the last four years, I wouldn’t wish them on anybody else,” Stinebaugh said. “Not being able to be out there on the field, kind of just sitting in the treatment room and getting treatment day after day and not playing for two or three years is definitely rough.”

Which explains the series of tattoos on Stinebaugh’s oft-injured right shoulder. I noticed this during media day last week, and asked for an explanation.

“It’s like some mechanical gears and stuff, looking like it’s ripping through my skin,” he told me. “With all the shoulder surgeries I’ve had, I thought it was kind of fitting.”

Stinebaugh had the work done “kind of on and off since end of senior year of high school until sophomore year of college,” and he said the work is now finished. Bright red scars also run through and around the gears; those are genuine.

“I’ve had three shoulder surgeries, some bones put in, ligaments reattached,” he said. “It’s kind of like a whole robot shoulder. There’s some screws and stuff, and there’s the scar. I’ve been through a lot, so it’s pretty fitting.”

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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Dan Steinberg | August 12, 2013