Dexter McDougle is making progress from surgery for a knee injury suffered in August, perhaps signaling that the rookie cornerback could be ready to return this upcoming offseason.
A torn ACL suffered this past August in training camp cut short McDougle's rookie season before it even started, sidelining the third round pick before a season where he was primed for a prominent role in the secondary. On Wednesday, McDougle talked with the media and said that while he hasn't asked and doesn't know about any timetable for recovery, that as of a few weeks ago he was ahead of schedule in his recovery.
“It's going along pretty good. Two weeks ago, I was cleared to run, so I've been running on the AlterG,” McDougle said. “I'll be doing more stuff outside in a couple weeks. I'm taking it day by day, the process is going really good. I've been handling it pretty good. Moving forward. Trying to keep a positive attitude.”
The AlterG is a piece of equipment that aids many players with lower body injuries in their rehab process. It provides an anti-gravity running environment that limits impact while running. Very often, a player such as McDougle will run on the AlterG for several weeks before eventually progressing to treadmill runs as well as running on turf.
On Wednesday, McDougle moved well around the locker room and showed no noticeable limp.
He admits to being “a bit down” after the injury, especially since he was "real close to playing this year.”
In addition to his daily rehab, McDougle continues to attend all team meetings as well as all positional meetings. He's uncertain if he will remain in New Jersey this offseason to continue his rehab but is focused on being ready for spring workouts.
“I haven't really figured that out yet. I'll talk with the trainers and see what they think is best for me,” McDougle said. “Whatever they say is what I'm going to do.”
- Illness hit the Jets this week. Tight end Jeff Cumberland, wide receiver Jeremy Kerley and defensive back Josh Thomas all missed Wednesday's practice due to illness. Head coach Rex Ryan said he didn't think it was going to be a long-term issue for any of the players.
- Tight end Jace Amaro, who is having a relatively solid rookie season, missed yet another practice as the team continues to follow the concussion protocol. This after he had a head injury two weeks ago that has forced him to miss practice since.
- Joining Amaro on the missing list is defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, whose toe injury sidelined him another day. Ryan said that that the turf toe injury will likely sideline his All-Pro pass rusher this Sunday at the Vikings.