So, the months of speculation are over—almost.
Robert Griffin III said today via Twitter that the doctors have said that his right knee has healed to the point where they have cleared him to practice. He also said that the coaches will “ease me in”. Exactly what is meant by that is anyone’s guess.
We do know that it means that Griffin will not go on the physically unable to perform list. There was speculation that Griffin might start the season on PUP in order to give his knee a little more rest and more time to heal.
But if he is going to be eased in to practice, he can’t be on the PUP. Players with that designation can’t practice at all.
When training camp starts on Thursday he will be about six and a half months removed from his reconstructive surgery, which took place on January 9. Most experts peg the recovery time from such surgery at seven to nine months. Since practice starts a couple of weeks earlier than that seven-month mark it makes sense to be cautious.
During OTAs and minicamp, Griffin worked throwing passes to other players who were recovering from injuries while backup Kirk Cousins went through position drills. Then when the team convened for 11 on 11 drills, Griffin became a spectator.
What we could see when training camp starts is Griffin participating in the position drills, throwing to receivers and handing off to running backs. But when it’s time for 11 on 11, when big bodies are flying around and the yellow shirt can’t always protect the QB from accidental contact, RG3 is likely to revert to taking “mental reps”.
It remains to be seen how quickly Griffin will be ramped up into practicing fully. It is likely that Shanahan and trainer Larry Hess have a plan in place but it is one that could be slowed down or perhaps accelerated depending on how Griffin progresses.
Doctors cleared me to practice. Coach is going to ease me in. Thank you for your support & See you in Richmond
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) July 22, 2013