OWINGS MILLS, Md. — The start of the 2016 season is less than four weeks away, but the Ravens still don’t know when wide receiver Breshad Perriman will return to practice.
The updates on the 2015 first-round pick have not been as frequent this summer as they were a year ago when he injured his right knee on the first day of training camp, but the organization had hoped he might be ready by now to return from a partially-torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee suffered in mid-June. Head coach John Harbaugh said Tuesday that he had no insight regarding the status of the 22-year-old receiver, who remains on the active physically unable to perform list.
“I wish I did. They had talked about this being the time frame — right about now [in] mid-August — when he would be back,” Harbaugh said. “That was the date that I was given back in June. He’s running. He’s on the ground running right now. But I haven’t been told that he’ll be back to practice tomorrow. I’m just like the fans. I’m waiting for him to get back out there. When he’s ready, he’ll be back out there.”
It was initially feared that Perriman’s ACL injury would require season-ending reconstruction surgery, but distinguished surgeon Dr. James Andrews determined that the knee was stable and would not require surgery, instead prescribing a stem-cell injection to accelerate the healing process. It’s been just over two months since Perriman injured his left knee, but some medical sources estimate a period of at least three months to recover from such an injury.
Should Perriman not return by the end of the preseason, the Ravens could place him on the reserve PUP list, which would sideline him for at least the first six weeks of the regular season. Under that scenario, he would not count as part of the 53-man roster to begin the season.
Of course, many remain skeptical regarding Perriman’s status after he suffered a partially-torn posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee on the first day of training camp last year and ultimately missed the entire season because of a slower-than-usual recovery and a setback suffered in late September.
Perriman practiced extensively during organized team activities this spring, but those workouts did not include starting quarterback Joe Flacco, who was recovering from his own knee injury at the time. The two haven’t been able to work on the field together since last year.
“It’s tough for me to really worry about right now just because we have so many other guys that we have to worry about getting better and getting on top of it,” Flacco said. “I haven’t really spent a ton of time with him on the football field — really, just last offseason — so it’d definitely be nice to get him out here at some point.
“At the same time, you can’t bring him back too early if he’s not going to be ready.”