He rehabbed all offseason, came into training camp, went through some of the minicamps and into training camp. On August 5th, he was tackled and his knee struck the ground. At the time we thought it was a bruise because he swelled up so much, did an MRI at Lehigh. It was inconclusive. We sent that MRI and Correll down to see Dr. Andrews, who operated on his knee last year. Dr. Andrews did an exam, wasn't sure what the situation was, did a repeat MRI in Birmingham the next morning. It still was inconclusive, sent him up here to rehab for a week, he did rehab for a week, didn't really respond. We sent him back down to Birmingham to see Dr. Andrews. Dr. Andrews, yesterday, operated on Correll's knee. The approach was that he was going to open up his knee and look at the tendon to see what kind of damage was done to it and then make a decision from there. When he opened him up, he realized that the situation was that Correll probably wouldn't heal up enough to be able to play without another surgery. So what he did was he reinforced his patella femoral complex with a stainless steel wire, then reattached his tendon where it was torn and then augmented that with a cadaver section of hamstring to reinforce it. Because he had torn before, he wanted to reinforce it with a wire and the hamstring tendon. He's down in Birmingham now, he's recovering and he will come back up here and do rehab probably within a week."
On whether Correll's
patella never healed properly or whether it was just weakened from the initial
RB: "We are not sure. We do know this, that when he went in and looked at the tendon, usually when they re-rupture, you see the tendon is damaged in terms of there is necrosis tissue or dead tissue or he is getting tendonitis in there, something that makes the tendon not look really healthy. Dr. Andrews told me last night that surprisingly, that's what they thought they would find if his tendon was torn, but the tissue was healthy. So I asked Dr. Andrews that very question. He said he just thinks it's a freak thing where it was healed up, his quad was strong, he had great rehab and was ready to play. And then he fell on it and it just ruptured again. Every now and then in these injuries, whatever kind of tendon it is, you have a chance to re-rupture it and that's what happened."
On whether Correll ever
complained of pain in the minicamps or training camp:
RB: "He would get sore at time and we would back him down. Then when he was not sore and could perform things in the training room, we would put him back out there. That's the same as anybody else who is coming off of surgery."
On whether Correll will be
able to play again or will he probably keep getting re-injured:
RB: "I don't think that is fair to speculate. We are going to rehab him like he is going to play again. I haven't talked to Correll today, but I'm sure that he wants to rehab to get back and play. This is a guy who has been through two major surgeries and rehabbed hard. So he's been through it and he knows it and I think he can do it again."
On the history of the type
of operation Correll had yesterday:
RB: "I think what makes it a little more complex than the original injury that he had, the original surgery, is that we won't be able to get his range of motion as quickly because of the stainless steal wires in there. But eventually he'll be okay. It just takes a little bit longer in the rehab."
On how long he thinks the
rehab will take:
RB: "Right now we are looking at next season. But we will take it day by day, week by day, month by month."
On his thoughts about Buckhalter's injury:
AR: "First thing, he's a great kid. He worked so hard this offseason to get that thing back and he came in phenomenal shape. We do that testing at the beginning of the year and he was right up there in the front of the pack. He felt like his leg was very strong and it tested very strong. We were looking forward to getting him back out there and he did some good things, then for that to happen to him, your heart goes out to the guy."
On what the team is going to do at running back:
AR: "We will let the young guys play and see what they can do. Then we will make a decision after that."
On whether he feels the team needs a bigger running
AR: "Yeah, we will see how that goes. I have been pleased up to this point with the backs and we will see how things go here."
On whether running backs Ryan Moats and Brian Westbrook
have different styles:
AR: "They are different in their own right. Both can be very productive from the backfield. I wouldn't slight [RB] Bruce [Perry] or [RB] Reno [Mahe] on that either. We have four backs that we feel pretty good about.
On whether he has spoken to Correll Buckhalter:
AR: "I have not."
On the devastation that Buckhalter must be feeling:
AR: "I talked to him before the surgery and he was in good spirits. I talked to him before he went down there, a couple of days before the surgery, and he was afraid he would need to have another surgery. He was bummed out. He worked hard and he was looking forward to this year. I think that yesterday, he had it in mind before going in, that he was going to need to have that thing fixed even though they were going in there to just examine it. He was optimistic. He is a positive guy. Once he gets over this thing, he will fire himself back up and rehab like a wild man. He will come back here and get that thing the best he can get it."
On whether this injury is career threatening:
RB: "That is not fare to say and that is not my decision to make. My decision is to rehab him like it's his first rehab ever. He has an advantage because he has been through these 2 long rehabs, so that actually makes my job a little bit easier because I have dealt with him on the other two and he and I have a relationship. If Correll wants to play again, we are going to rehab him like he is going to play again."
On whether certain players are more susceptible to
RB: "I don't think that's quite the case. I think we see some cases where a guy tears an ACL on one side and tears it on the other side. He has two knee injuries that are different. He had an ACL on one side and a quad tendon on the other side. So, it's just one of those things and I think the injury rates in the NFL show that."
On why the original MRI didn't show the injury:
RB: "In the medical community everybody thinks that MRIs are definitive and they are not always that way. They are two dimensional and our bodies are three dimensional. So, you don't get to see everything you want. Plus, any time you have had a surgery, whether it is a meniscus tear and you've had that trimmed out or you have an ACL repaired, it doesn't appear on the MRI. So, it's very hard to read after you have had surgery once and then you have an injury. So, that is why we went through two MRIs, a couple of Radiologists read it, two of the best doctors in the world in Dr. Littleton and Dr. Andrews and we could not come up with a conclusive decision on it. So, that's just the way it is."