When the Washington Commanders take the field in early September for the first game of the 2022 season, there's a chance the team will have its top tight end back on the field.
Logan Thomas, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in Week 13 last December, told the Sports Junkies he's aiming to be ready to play in the franchise's 2022 season opener.
"We never put a projection on it. It's supposed to be a 10-month recovery from the time I had surgery, which would put us somewhere around Week 4," Thomas said. "But the way I feel and the type of person I am, the type of competitor I am, I'm shooting for Week 1."
The tight end, who had surgery on Dec. 17, said he's currently at the "jogging stage" of his recovery. Thomas feels he's capable of doing more than just that, too, but doesn't want to speed up his rehab with the season still over four months away.
"There's no need to rush it at this point," he said.
Additionally, Thomas said he's ahead of schedule in his recovery but understands it takes time to fully rehab from a serious injury like the one he suffered in Las Vegas last December.
"[Surgery] went really well. I'm feeling really good right now, a little more ahead of schedule than where I expected to be, where I'm supposed to be," Thomas said. "So that's good news as well. But it obviously takes a little bit of time to get back in the swing of things, building up your strength and stuff and get going."
When Thomas originally suffered the injury, the initial belief was that the tight end might have avoided a serious knee injury. Unfortunately, that didn't end up being the case.
In fact, Thomas shared that his surgery was a bit more complex than just a standard ACL repair -- the 30-year-old had other ligaments in need of attention as well.
"With my knee, the reports came out but they didn't tell the full story," Thomas said. "I did ACL, MCL and both my [lateral and medial] meniscus."
Thomas isn't the only Commanders' captain who's recovering from a major knee injury, either. Star defensive tackle Chase Young suffered a torn ACL in Week 10 of last season and is currently in a similar spot in his recovery as Thomas.
In the public eye, Young has remained fairly quiet as he recovers from his ACL tear. He's barely been on social media and hasn't said much of anything about how far along his recovery is. However, the 22-year-old has been present at the Commanders' offseason program this week and was even photographed pushing a sled, an encouraging sign in rehab.
Thomas, who's seen Young firsthand this week, was asked about No. 99's progress. Thomas explained that the pass rusher's surgery was a bit more complex than his, which is why they currently are in a similar place in recovery despite Young having the procedure nearly a month prior.
"He was a month ahead of me, but his surgery was a little different than mine," Thomas said. "He had to transplant his patella [tendon] from his other knee, so it's a little bit different. He had to rehab both of his legs a little bit. We're pretty close to the same [timeline]."
For Thomas, his patella tendon was not impacted by his injury, so his doctors "spliced" it and used part of it to rebuild his ACL.
On-field activities don't begin for nearly another month for the Commanders. But based on Thomas' comments, it'd be hard to imagine either him or Young participating in any on-field work. Yet, with Week 1 still a long way away, both players have plenty of time to continue rehabbing with the goal of returning before the season starts.
"Once you go into it, you take that time to make sure you put in the work that you know that everything is good, strong and ready to handle what's going on," Thomas said. "When that time is ready, I'll be ready to go. What everything is telling me right now is that it's going according to plan."