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The Good News/Bad News Regarding Ramsey's Recovery

The All-Pro cornerback underwent surgery on his left knee after being injured in practice

To show what kind of bad luck the Miami Dolphins encountered when Jalen Ramsey went down with a knee injury in practice Thursday, all that's needed is one look at his NFL resume.

This is a player who had been — in addition to being ridiculously talented — extremely durable after coming into the league as the fifth overall pick in the 2016 draft. In his first seven seasons in the NFL with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Los Angeles Rams, Ramsey missed a grand total of six games.

That's a number Ramsey will more than double this season based on the reporting suggesting he'll be out until at least December. As we pointed out Friday, if Ramsey returns for the first game of December — Sunday, Dec. 3 at Washington — he will have missed 11 games.

Exactly how long Ramsey will be out remains to be determined, though, and it could be a while until we get a clearer idea.

Ramsey, though, is staying positive.

RAMSEY'S PAST KNEE ISSUES

This actually isn't the first time that Ramsey has dealt with a meniscus issue, though this one involves a different knee and unfortunately clearly is more significant.

As a rookie with the Jaguars, Ramsey sustained what was described as a small meniscus tear in his right knee during the offseason program. After undergoing surgery, Ramsey sat out the 2016 preseason opener for Jacksonville but was in the starting lineup the next week.

Ramsey went on to play and start all 16 games that season, finishing as the runner-up (to Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa) for AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.

THE DERWIN JAMES PRECEDENT

Speaking of the Chargers, though, here's the part that could be a bit more worrisome for the Dolphins and their fans, and that's what happened to safety Derwin James in 2020.

Like Ramsey, James underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus after being injured in training camp, but his injury sidelined him for the entire season after the Chargers placed him on injured reserve before the cuts to the 53-player limit.

At the time of James' injury, NFL Network reported the recovery period for a full meniscus repair was 6-8 months. Six months from now is the end of January, which means having Ramsey back by December might be wishful thinking based on the reporting that his surgery also involved a full repair — which will be more beneficial to him in the long run.

Former Chargers doctor David Chao used James as a comp for Ramsey's situation, adding that Ramsey would be lucky to be able to "play well" in 2023.

Ramsey himself, though, pointed to the end of the regular season in his post-surgery social media message.

In the end, the final word on whether the Dolphins anticipate having Ramsey available at any point in the 2023 season will come with the timing of when they put him on injured reserve.

The likelihood is that Ramsey will be on the initial 53-player roster and then be put on IR, making him eligible to return this season. If Ramsey goes on IR at any time before the cuts to 53, then he'll officially be done for the 2023 season.