Eddy Lacy, the Seahawks new running back, injured his right ankle during Week 6 of last season, and was placed on injured reserve. In October he underwent surgical repair of his fracture and deltoid ligament injury, requiring “wires, 2 screws and a plate.”
He was given a 4-6 month timetable, and expects to be able to perform well during OTAs.
Medial (Inside) Ankle Ligaments
His surgeon, Dr. Anderson, wrote a paper on this very injury, in which he reported that, following surgical repair, 86 percent of NFL players were able to return to play after roughly six months.1
Often, the reason that some aren’t able to return is because of associated damage to the ankle joint’s articular cartilage. Damage to joint cartilage is a serious issue. This can significantly lengthen the amount of time before return or lead to permanent problems, such as activity-related swelling, stiffness and ankle pain. These can decrease a player’s ability to train and play hard, as well as limiting the number of plays they’re able to tolerate during practice and games.
So, following this surgery, there’s an 86 percent chance of return for all comers. As Seattle just paid Lacy big money (I’m sure after examining and imaging his ankle), I think we’ll have to trust their medical staff that he’ll make it back. Lacy should be fine by mid-April, in plenty of time to participate in off-season activities and training camp.
- Hsu AR, Lareau CR, Anderson RB. Repair of Acute Superficial Deltoid Complex Avulsion During Ankle Fracture Fixation in National Football League Players. Foot Ankle Int. 2015 Nov;36(11):1272-8 (back)