Washington Husky WR John Ross III Surgery Scheduled After NFL Combine

Oct 22, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver John Ross (1) gets ready to receive the opening kick off against the Oregon State Beavers during the first quarter at Husky Stadium. Washington won 41-17. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 22, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver John Ross (1) gets ready to receive the opening kick off against the Oregon State Beavers during the first quarter at Husky Stadium. Washington won 41-17. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports /

Washington Husky WR John Ross III Scheduled Shoulder Surgery After NFL Combine

A recent report from DraftAnalyst.com’s Tony Pauline states that University of Washington wide receiver John Ross III has scheduled shoulder surgery following his participation in the NFL Combine in two weeks.

With the NFL Combine arriving in under two weeks, there is a great deal riding on the timing of this particular announcement.  Ross is one of seven Washington Huskies participating in the 2017 NFL Combine.  The Combine is an annual gathering of the best college football talent hoping to land on an NFL team.  As of today, Ross is expected to be a first round selection in the 2017 NFL Draft.  In fact, he was ranked as the third best wide receiver in the draft by NFL.com’s Mike Mayock.

But whether Mayock knew about the upcoming surgery has yet to be determined.  According to Pauline, the injury occurred during the Husky’s rout of Stanford, 44-6, on September 30. In that game, Ross caught 4 passes for 82 yards and a touchdown.  Despite the injury, Ross played the entire season, catching 81 passes for 1150 yards and 17 touchdowns.

Per Pauline, Ross will have surgery to  repair an injured labrum in his shoulder soon after the combine.  So what is the likely result of surgery?

Good Outcomes

According to physiodc.com, the outcomes look excellent :

"“The recovery depends upon many factors, such as where the tear was located, how severe it was and how good the surgical repair was. It is believed that it takes at least four to six weeks for the labrum to reattach itself to the rim of the bone, and probably another four to six weeks to get strong. Once the labrum has healed to the rim of the bone, it should see stress very gradually so that it can gather strength. It is important not to reinjure it while it is healing.How much motion and strengthening of the arm is allowed after surgery depends upon many factors, and it is up to the surgeon to let you know your limitations and how fast to progress. Because of the variability in the injury and the type of repair done, it is difficult to predict how soon someone can to return to sports and activities after the repair. The type of sport also is important, since contact sports have a greater chance of injuring the labrum repair. However, a vast majority of patients have full function of the shoulder after labrum repair, and most patients can return to their previous level of sports with no or few restrictions.”-per John Hopkins Ortho Surgery Website“"

The key to the recovery is gradual rehabilitation. Since Ross was able to play a full and very productive football season despite the injury, the prognosis is very good. Unfortunately, this introduces uncertainty, a quality NFL executives shy away from.

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Medical History

Ross already has some medical history that will be investigated thoroughly in the NFL Combine and in weeks leading up to the 2017 NFL Draft.  He suffered a knee injury in the 2014 football season against the Illinois Fighting Illini on September 13. Ross continued to play the remainder of the season, scoring seven touchdowns, four via pass receptions, two via kickoff returns, and one via rushing.

He underwent microfracture surgery following that season to repair two torn menisci in his right knee. Unfortunately, that was not the end of it. Ross aggravated his knee. Per the press release from UW, he injured his knee again in 2015. This time, it was not the right knee, but rather the left one.

"“I was running a simple go route, and a lot of people were in the way,” Ross said. “My first instinct, instead of running someone over, was jump out the way. So I was kind of favoring my meniscus [right] knee, jumped out the way to my right. Didn’t want to land on my right. Landed in an awkward position on my left and I felt my knee snap. That’s when I tore the ACL and meniscus on my left knee. It was kind of a weird deal,” Ross said. “After I got off the ground, I could still run. I was walking without a limp. Going to class. I got my MRI, and I went home and went to sleep. I woke up, and my leg was stuck in a bent position. I kind of figured something was really, really wrong at that point.” – Ross interviewed by ESPN.com Ivan Maseil"

In the end, Ross turned on the jets for the 2016 football season. He was a speedster, a blazing streak of purple that ran right by cornerbacks and safeties alike.   If it ended there, there would be few questions now.

Don’t Open That Pandora’s Box!

And so, this recent bit of injury news has fanned the fears of NFL scouts and fans, all vying for that “sure-fire” draft pick in a selection process wrought with uncertainty.  Is it better to shoot for the moon with a bigger question mark, or simply to shoot for the clouds with a smaller one?

To his credit, Ross will participate in all aspects of the NFL Combine with the exception of the bench press (not much value in Hercules at wide receiver).   And he will be available for private workouts through March 11.

Next: Why Washington DE/OLB Joe Mathis Will Impress In NFL Draft

There should be no reason why this latest surgery will have any negative impact on John Ross’ NFL career at wide receiver.  Now, it’s up to Ross, his agent, and his medical contacts to convince the NFL of that.