Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett has regained voluntary movement of his arms and legs according to reports.
Doctor Andrew Cappuccino, the Bills team orthopaedic surgeon, had said on Monday that Everett's chance of walking again are "very slim."
But according to Doctor Peter Ostrow, the medical reporter for WIVB-TV, Cappuccino told him that Everett's prognosis has improved dramatically.
"We may be witnessing a minor miracle," Cappuccino was quoted as saying on the station's web site.
According to the report, Everett was able to voluntarily move his arms and legs - a marked improvement in his condition.
Cappuccino also noted that the MRI scan taken after the surgery showed only a small amount of swelling in the spinal cord - both positive signs.
The 25-year-old had four-hour emergency neck surgery at Millard Fillmore Gates Hospital on Sunday.
Everett was injured on the second-half kick-off in Sunday's season opener after colliding with Denver Broncos returner Domenik Hixon.
Meanwhile, Everett's mother Patricia Dugas thanked the team and its fans for their support after her son suffered what had been described as a life-threatening injury.
"On behalf of my son and our entire family I want to thank the fans and everyone for their prayers, warm wishes and general thoughts about Kevin," she said.
"I especially want to thank the hospital staff and the Bills organisation for their tremendous support during this difficult and challenging time. I would ask for everyone to continue to keep Kevin in their prayers."
Everett remains in the intensive care unit, where he is under sedation and breathing through a respirator as doctors wait for the swelling to lessen.
Cappuccino had said on Monday that it will take up to three days to determine the severity of the injury and the recovery process.
During the extensive surgery, Cappuccino repaired a break between the third and fourth vertebrae and also alleviated the pressure on the spinal cord.
To reconfigure Everett's spine, doctors also carried out a bone graft and inserted a cage and a plate, held in by four screws, and inserted two small rods that are held in place by another four screws.
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