by Liz Bonis & Megan Burgasser, WKRC
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The Bengals will be under the lights Monday for a Super Bowl rematch with the Los Angeles Rams. But the question on everyone’s mind: Will Joe Burrow play?
He didn’t practice Thursday and was seen wearing a sleeve on his leg. The Bengals’ star quarterback said it’s easy to dwell on bumps in the road, but he said his team is one that overcomes adversity.
The calf injury that seems to be holding back Burrow is what trainers refer to as a soft tissue injury. The team at OrthoCincy in Anderson Township said there are a lot of variables as to how long it takes to heal from a soft tissue injury.
“Sometimes soft tissue injuries can last for quite some time, because it takes a while to get rid of the swelling and inflammation and also to rehab that muscle or tendons, ligaments trying to get that stability back,” said Jill Goodwin, director of physical therapy services at OrthoCincy.
She doesn’t have the specifics on Burrow’s injury or timing of his recovery, but she addressed what seems to be on the mind of many – can’t he just wrap it up and play through it?
“A lot of those people will try those things, and they realize that they can’t perform at the level they want to because of the pain. They’re usually limited by the pain. Wrapping it up, that compression does help initially for sure and may even provide some stability back on the field or back on the court, but initially they have to give that the proper healing time for it, and move into that next phase of rehab for them to really be able to make a 100% recovery,” Goodwin said.
That rehab often involves everything from strength training to soft tissue work, such as massage. Healing time varies with the severity of the injury and the age of the person.
Burrow has a few advantages: He had some recovery time during the preseason. He’s also relatively young and an elite athlete. With almost any injury, recovery is better for those in better shape.