Monday, February 1, 2010
Updated: February 2, 8:45 AM ET
Report: Sanchez to have surgery
ESPN.com news services
New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez has decided to undergo surgery on his left knee, according to a report from the New York Daily News.
The Daily News posted on its Web site early Tuesday morning that it has learned Sanchez will have surgery in the next two or three weeks. The paper said it would be performed by the Jets' doctors, led by Ken Montgomery.
The surgery would stabilize the patella ligament in his left knee, which was injured when he was at USC.
Sanchez, who just completed his rookie season, won't need any procedures on the posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, which he sprained earlier this season.
He had both knees examined by team doctors this week and also was evaluated last week by Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala.
General manager Mike Tannenbaum said last week Sanchez would be ready "well before training camp" if he elected to have the procedure, which isn't considered major, but might miss the first month of offseason workouts.
Sanchez dislocated the kneecap during the first week of fall practice before his junior season at USC. He has worn a brace on the knee since, even in the pros. Sanchez also banged up his left knee Nov. 29 against the Carolina Panthers.
"You don't want to have anybody miss any time, especially a young quarterback," Tannenbaum said last week, "but we'll balance it out with a medical procedure that may give him more stability in there and give him a chance to play without any worry about that."
Sanchez's right knee, injured against the Buffalo Bills on Dec. 3 in Toronto, will heal through rehabilitation.
"I think everyone's on the same page," Tannenbaum said. "It's not going to be anything major."
Sanchez injured the right knee when he dived headfirst on an 8-yard run early in the third quarter against the Bills. The play came a few days after coach Rex Ryan brought in Yankees manager Joe Girardi to help teach Sanchez how to improve his sliding technique.
He missed one game when Ryan kept him home for the trip to Tampa Bay on Dec. 13 and was replaced by Kellen Clemens. Sanchez returned the following week against the Atlanta Falcons wearing a brace and had no apparent signs of injury during the last several weeks of the season.
He helped lead the Jets to the AFC Championship Game at Indianapolis and played some of his best football during the playoff run. After throwing 20 interceptions during the regular season, Sanchez had just two in three postseason games and fell a win short of becoming the first rookie quarterback to play in the Super Bowl.
The fifth overall pick last year out of USC, Sanchez finished the regular season throwing for 2,444 yards and 12 touchdowns but had a dismal 63.0 quarterback rating.
Armed with a color-coded system and numbered plays on his wrist to help him, Sanchez's ball security improved dramatically down the stretch. He finished the playoffs going 41-of-68 for 539 yards with four touchdowns and a 92.7 rating.
Sanchez also joined the Baltimore Ravens' Joe Flacco as the only rookie quarterbacks to win two playoff games.