The Buffalo Bills and their fans were given an insight into Sammy Watkins’ recovery timeline, after the Doctor who performed his surgery recently discussed the injury he suffered.
It’s fair to say the 2016 campaign was Sammy Watkins‘ most frustrating since entering the NFL. The star receiver had his worst season yet for the Buffalo Bills, setting career lows for catches (28), yards (430) and touchdown receptions (two).
Of course, it didn’t help that Watkins was limited to just eight games, thanks to ongoing issues with a foot fracture which he suffered last offseason. He underwent surgery at the time, which included having a screw inserted into his foot, with the hope he would be ready in time for the 2016 season.
However, after struggling through the first two regular season games, the 23-year old was placed on injured reserve. He returned to action in Week 12, but even though he showed glimpses of his potential, he never truly returned to form.
In fairness to Watkins, it turns out that part of the reason for this, was down to continued problems with his foot. This finally resulted in him undergoing a second surgery last Friday.
More from Tip of the Tower
- Cam Phillips making his mark on Toronto Argonauts offence
- Toronto Argonauts: 4 storylines ahead of matchup against Redblacks
- Federico Bernardeschi ready for new challenge with Toronto FC
- Toronto Argonauts overcome Roughriders in entertaining Touchdown Atlantic
- Buffalo Bills: Von Miller drawing inspiration from Bruce Smith
The Bills announced the procedure and claimed the Fort Myers, Florida native should be ready for training camp. However, given the repeated setbacks he’s already encountered in his young career, teammates and fans could be forgiven for being concerned about his long-term prospects.
With this in mind, a recent report from WGR550’s Sal Capaccio makes for interesting reading. It relates to an appearance by noted foot specialist and Carolina Panthers team physician Dr. Robert Anderson, on ESPN’s Fantasy Focus podcast.
The reason Bills’ fans should be interested in Capaccio’s article, is because Dr. Anderson who performed both surgical procedures on Watkins’ foot. Further, even though this has not been confirmed by the Bills, Dr. Anderson discussed Jones Fractures on the podcast, which is reportedly what Watkins suffered. (The Doctor never mentions Watkins by name during the interview.)
To get a full transcript of the two-minute conversation you can click here, and for the full interview you can click here. However, the most important section relates to projecting the long-term playing future of the 2014 first overall draft pick.
More specifically, ESPN’s Stephania Bell asked about the need for a second procedure, and if the results from that tend to be permanent. Dr. Anderson said: “They tend to be very very good, (but) there’s still always a chance the bone may have difficulty healing within that first one or two year window.
“Once a player gets past a year and a half, two years from a Jones Fracture that’s been operated on they’re usually pretty safe. We don’t see any re-fractures after that period of time.”
So in summary, it sounds like Watkins will be just fine long-term, assuming he can safely navigate his way through the next 18-24 months. Understandably, Bills’ fans will still be nervous, but it’s a mostly positive scenario, given whats transpired up to this point.
Taking into account Dr. Anderson’s comments, how confident are you about Watkins’ recovery? Do you expect him to eventually reach his full potential, or are you concerned he will continue to be injury-prone? Share your thoughts in the comments section.