Rickert is the agent for Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Mike Patterson, who was front-page news Wednesday after suffering a seizure during training camp in Bethlehem, Pa. Patterson was taken to a nearby hospital, where he is resting comfortably while undergoing evaluation.
What rankles Rickert are the number of premature and inaccurate reports on Patterson’s condition and prognosis that have been floating through the media.
“There’s a lot of misinformation out there,” Rickert said. “I’m spending a lot of the day correcting the information.”
The first reports that surfaced Thursday said that Paterson has arteriovenous malformation, or AVM, a brain condition that may require surgery.
“No one’s doing everything wrong,” Rickert stressed. “The Eagles are communicating with one doctor, the doctor who evaluated Mike, and he was treating Mike for AVM. That’s the only doctor the Eagles are talking to, so that’s what they’re reporting.
“What they’re not reporting is that they’ve had two other medical opinions. Those two doctors are not ruling out AVM, but they are not ready to say definitively that’s what it is. We’re actually set to see a fourth doctor, a specialist in Philly, (Friday) to evaluate him.
“After we have those four of those opinions, Mike and his wife, Bianca, are going to sit down and weigh those opinions, and decide how best to deal with the issue, whatever it might be.”
Patterson, Cleveland Browns return specialist Josh Cribbs and Miami Dolphins linebacker Kevin Burnett are the most prominent of the 40 or so NFL players represented by Rickert, who is based in Niskayuna. He may not have the name recognition of Drew Rosenhaus or James “Bus” Cook, but Rickert said he has fielded more than a dozen media calls since Patterson’s illness.
“This is absolutely not the way I want people to think of me or anything in that respect,” he said. “My primary concern is for Mike and his safety and his well-being. I don’t care about anything else at this point.
“Football is secondary right now, and Mike has a great wife in Bianca, who understands the big picture. She’s had family members that are in professional sports. Her brother is Tony Parrish of the 49ers. She’s very aware of the big picture, and she and I are on the same page, that we’re concerned about Mike’s health.”
In the meantime, Rickert is trying to pass along the most information he can on his client.
“My website got so many hits from yesterday and today it crashed twice,” he said, “but they reloaded it with enough capacity now to handle a million hits a day if they need to. All my statements are on there, clarifying and correcting the information.”
Pete Dougherty is the Times Union’s sports TV/radio columnist. Reach him at 454-5416 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit the sports media blog at http://blog.timesunion.com/sportsmedia.
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