Saturday the Seattle Seahawks drafted linebacker Shaquem Griffin in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft, reuniting him to play once again with his twin brother Shaquill Griffin. The brothers played their college football together at the University of Central Florida, after starring on the field at Lakewood High School in St. Petersburg, Florida growing up. Shaquem, as everyone is likely aware of by now, has no left hand, but he obviously has not let that slow him down in any way to this point in his career.
However, what I have seen asked and discussed both here and on social media platforms in recent months and recent days is how much not having a left hand affects his weight. The short answer is, not much.
Now for the longer answer, and luckily multiple scientists have done work to determine roughly what percentage of the body each different body parts should weigh. The major study on the matter was conducted by Stanley Plagenhoef, F. Gaynor Evans and Thomas Abdelnour and published under the title “Anatomical Data for Analyzing Human Motion” in 1983. I’m not here to discuss the exact scientific accuracy of the study because it has its pros and cons regarding the accuracy of the information. However, what I can say is that it gets us into the ballpark, which is all we need for this topic.
According to the study, the hand of a human male will account for approximately 0.65% of the total body weight, while a forearm will account for roughly 1.87% of total body weight. Since Shaquem weighed in at 233 at the combine, that’s the weight I’ll use to approximate things here.
Doing the math on those percentages, it puts the weight of a hand for a 233-pound male at just a hair heavier than a pound and a half, 1.5145 pounds to be exact. For the forearm of a male of 233 pounds, running the numbers yields 4.3571 pounds.
So, if Shaquem were missing his entire forearm, the total weight would be 5.8716. While his forearm appears slightly undeveloped to my non-medical eye, it’s certainly there. Thus, there is some portion of the forearm weight that needs to be accounted for. How much, though is not something I can take a guess at.
What we do know is that it most certainly appears to be at least pound and a half, and probably somewhat less than 5.8716 pounds. However, exactly where in that range I’m not certain. I’d guess probably 2.5-3 pounds, but that would be an unqualified shot in the dark. Basically, after weighing in at 233 at the combine, Shaquem would probably weigh in somewhere between 235 and 240 pounds with a hand.
I could be way off base, so I’d love for some of our readers who are better educated in the medical arts to weigh in with a more informed guess based than mine which is based on no more than high school anatomy and Google search.