Last week the Bucs suffered a couple of key injuries to Davin Joseph and Cody Grimm. Joseph’s injury is only reported as a left foot fracture and I haven’t seen a report on which bone is broken. I will say, however, that most foot fractures heal well, with only a few being problematic long term (See Yao Ming). The issue with foot fractures is that they take time to heal. It becomes very hard to put pressure on the foot until the bone is solid and the swelling around the injury has completely decreased. This is especially important for offensive linemen. They need to push off on their feet to keep leverage and to drive into the defensive linemen. Joseph should be able to recover in a couple of months with no lasting effects into next season.
As for Cody Grimm, his injury is a fracture of the left distal fibula according to a report by St. Petersburg Times. The fibula is the small bone on the outside of the leg and supplies stability to the outside of the ankle. He was scheduled to undergo surgery this week on the bone. Surgery is often required with this injury because there are many ligaments attached to the lower aspect of the bone. If the fracture is displaced at all, it may not heal or heal in a bad position, which can effect the balance and motion of the ankle joint. By placing a metal plate and screws on the outside of the fibula, it stabilizes the ankle joint and allows for the bone to heal in the proper alignment.
Most people can heal a fracture which has been fixed in about four to six weeks, but the rehab portion of the recovery may be just as long. Most surgeons do not allow weightbearing on the foot until after the bone has started to show signs of healing so the ankle will become stiff and weak. Thus, it takes a couple of months to regain that strength and motion after the bone heals. If surgery goes without problems, I would expect Cody Grimm to be back running and doing light drills without much problem in the spring and he should have a full recovery with no major deficits for next season. Here’s hoping for a full recovery for both players who are key players for the Bucs and their future.