In the wake of the Rams losing Sam Bradford to an ACL tear, it’s natural to wonder if the Browns’ own QB isn’t coming back too quickly. It hasn’t even been a year since Brian Hoyer tore his ACL against Buffalo and he’s back out there as the Cleveland Browns starter. When talking about the situation, Mike Pettine said he doesn’t think Hoyer’s back too quickly.
“The circumstances of all the cases are different. I have a daughter that’s done both ACLs, so having gone through it and knowing the rehab and knowing the process and how it gets repaired, a lot of times it comes back stronger than it was before,” he said. “I think that’s difficult to make a blanket statement on all the knee injuries. Certainly what happened to Sam is so unfortunate, but we feel confident with where Brian is and I think he’d be the first one to tell you that his knee feels strong.”
The fact is that it’s impossible to draw conclusions about Brian Hoyer from Sam Bradford. While I certainly can’t speak to an NFL player’s experience coming back from an ACL, I can speak to just how different each injury is. In my two ACL surgeries, one was a pretty clean injury and the other included cartilage damage as well. When you casually talk about these things they all get called “ACL injuries,” but it only makes sense that each injury and each patient experiencing the injury are different.
One thing that’s for sure is that NFL players are at risk of these injuries as much as any athletes in the world in all likelihood. Let’s be frank. NFL players are humans – albeit well-conditioned humans – running around a field with extra pounds of equipment on their bodies while being blocked and tackled by giants. Point being, there’s no way to conclude that Sam Bradford or any other player is or isn’t ready simply because they get injured again any more than a player is unprepared for the season because he tears an achilles or some other muscle.
I feel awful for Bradford who has to stare down another year of rehab. While it’s natural to root for and against professional athletes, I never want to see a player lose because they can’t even stay on the field.