The Washington Commanders placing Chase Young on the physically unable to perform list to start the season wasn’t a huge surprise. The former Defensive Rookie of the Year was always behind Logan Thomas, who was active for Week 1, in his knee rehab despite the fact his injury occurred a month earlier.
That’s because Young’s injury was far more severe.
Whereas Thomas suffered a clean tear of the ACL, Young also tore his ACL and sustained a fully ruptured patella. Rehabbing an ACL requires an eight-month timetable. The fact Young’s had to essentially rehab two crucial ligaments and his patellar tendon should help folks understand why his 2022 will be delayed.
Despite rumors claiming Young suffered a setback while training at Von Miller’s pass-rushing camp, Young is right on track with his recovery.
That doesn’t mean fans should pencil Young in for a Week 5 return, however. Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Commanders are optimistic Young will return before the midway point of the season, but he’s on a “slightly slower timeline” to return than running back Brian Robinson, who’s more likely to play Week 5.
Brian Robinson might return to the Commanders before Chase Young.
As reported last week, Robinson is off crutches and walking without a noticeable limp. Schefter added that the Commanders plan to have the third-round pick ramp up his conditioning level this week. That’ll take place outside on grass, which will mark Robinson’s first outdoor action since his accident.
While the tone isn’t as positive surrounding Young’s recovery, this report is nothing worth overreacting to. The plan is for Young to have his knee reevaluated by famed athlete surgeon Dr. James Andrews and the team is confident he’ll return “well” before the seasons’ halfway point, which would be the Week 8-9 range.
Young is already back on the field for the Commanders, partaking in defensive line drills and changing directions on his knee. During this past week of practice, the former second overall pick was spotted running hills; another sign that he’s on a positive trajectory.
On Wednesday, Robinson was back with the Commanders on the practice field riding the stationary bike during team stretches.
Part of a loaded Commanders receiver room, Dyami Brown is hurting his case for playing time with two bad drops against the Ravens.
Whether that means he’ll return in Week 5 — the earliest possible return date for players who open the season on PUP — remains to be seen. The important thing is the Commanders are taking it slow with Young after he underwent major reconstruction surgery in late-November of last year.
Like Robinson, Washington will welcome Young back with open arms when he’s activated. And speaking of Robinson, the fact he has a realistic shot of returning by Week 5 given what he went through is nothing short of miraculous.