According to a report from ESPN's Chris Low, Tennessee star wideout Cedric Tillman is currently recovering from 'tightrope' ankle surgery.
Tillman had the surgery early last week in hopes to recover as soon as possible, per the report. The Las Vegas, Nevada, native injured his ankle against Akron on an eight-yard catch on 1st-and-10 in the early second quarter.
Tennessee has already dealt with some ramifications of Tillman's injury, as the All-SEC wide receiver missed the Vols' matchup against Florida last weekend.
However, Tennessee's passing attack was unfazed, as Hendon Hooker lit up the Gators for 349 yards through the air along with a pair of touchdown tosses.
As mentioned in Low's report, former Alabama star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa had the surgery twice during his collegiate career and returned in four weeks in the 2018 season and three weeks in 2019.
There is no specific timetable for Tillman's return, but considering Tagovailoa returned in three weeks from the same surgery, there's a chance Tillman will be ready to go for the Alabama game. If Tillman were to play against LSU, that would put his return a couple of days under three weeks since the procedure.
Regardless, based off of the history of Tagovailoa's returns, Tillman should be ready to go by homecoming when Tennessee hosts UT Martin in Week 8. The date of the game would mark about four-and-a-half weeks removed from surgery.
Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel met with local Knoxville media on Wednesday and did not share any specifics on Tillman's injury, claiming he and his staff were "hopeful" Tillman could play against LSU.
"Obviously, we are a long way away from game time," Heupel said on the matter. "We are hopeful that he will continue to make progress and be available when we go down there (to LSU)."
While the Vols' passing game seemed to not miss a beat without Tillman on the sidelines Saturday, losing a game-changing player undoubtedly hurts Tennessee's ceiling on offense.
Tillman currently has 246 yards receiving on 17 catches and one touchdown.
After their bye week this weekend, Tennessee will return to the field next Saturday when they travel to LSU to take on the Tigers at 11:00 a.m. CT/12:00 p.m. ET.