Head coach John Harbaugh on Monday said that he fully expected that Ravens starting quarterback Joe Flacco would be ready come the start of training camp in 2016. Welcome news given the feeling fans have right now and the rough timetable that has been mentioned.
However, Harbaugh did hedge his bets since Flacco has yet to let the swelling go down and actually have surgery to repair his torn ACL and MCL.
Indications that I've been given would be that he would be back for the start of training camp and it wouldn't be an issue. However as we well know, those are always things that get determined by how well the rehab goes.
With injuries like this, an MRI can give a good picture of what has gone on in the knee, but without fully seeing it for themselves, doctors are hesitant to set a formal timeline for rehabilitation and full recovery. Even with that, a lot will depend on how the normally resilient Flacco takes to rehab and how his body responds to things. We've seen players come back completely in less than 9 months and we've seen players never be the same afterwards.
While the quarterback position is less reliant on quick movements and athleticism as a running back or wide receiver, the Ravens won't put their franchise quarterback in harm's way by pushing him too fast into the starting lineup. If there is hesitation on either Flacco or the Ravens' parts, the timeline could be extended to roughly a full 12 months putting Flacco out for about half the season.
Luckily for the Ravens though, the MRI showed exactly what they thought had happened, not giving them anything new to worry about.
The MRI confirmed what we had talked about last night. So the injury is as was stated last night. The process will be, those surgeries aren't done until the swelling comes down. So there will be a timeline to get the swelling down. That's usually no sooner than a week. Sometime after that, he'll have surgery to repair both of those ligaments and will start immediately on his rehab.
Hopefully Flacco puts in the type of effort he has shown on the field to his rehabilitation and we'll see him completely ready come training camp in 2016.