Free safety Louis Delmas and left tackle Branden Albert were two of Dolphins GM Dennis Hickey's free agency signings in the 2014 offseason, and both men played well before suffering season-ending ACL injuries. Despite their injury histories, both players are projected starters for the Dolphins' upcoming make-or-break 2015 season, and the Dolphins organization has expressed high confidence throughout the offseason that the two veterans will be ready to play by game 1 of the regular season. Adam Beasley of the Miami Herald has just recently provided the most recent injury recovery update regarding those players (at the end of his article discussing DeflateGate, of course), and it's all good news.
According to Beasley, Louis Delmas is not only on track to be ready to start in game 1, but he also hopes to participate in Dolphins minicamp starting in June. In other words, despite suffering his torn ACL in early December, he hopes to be on the field barely over 6 months later. Normally, the recovery timeline you hear associated with recovery from a torn ACL is closer to 10 to 12 months, but Delmas' injury notably did not involve any damage to other structures in his knee. In cases involving only a torn ACL with no surrounding damage, the timetable you'll hear is a slightly less daunting 6 to 9 months. Therefore, Delmas returning to the field in June is an optimistic yet also realistic recovery timeline given the nature of his injury and his setback-free rehab process. Delmas won't be at 100% for minicamp, but he should have regained much of his prior strength and control of his knee by that point. The Dolphins apparently believe Delmas will be healthy enough to join his teammates on the practice field months before the start of the regular season.
Meanwhile, Branden Albert wasn't quite as lucky as Delmas (with "lucky" being a relative term) when it came to his own ACL injury. In addition to tearing the ACL, Albert also suffered a torn MCL in November. In cases such as Albert's, it's more common for people to require the 10 to 12 months to recover, and that's the timetable Albert is currently following. According to Beasley, Albert remains on track to be available to start in week 1 of the 2015 regular season, which is almost exactly 10 months after he suffered his injury. Everybody is eager for the Pro Bowl left tackle to get back onto the field, but that's still months away. However, continued reports of no setbacks qualifies as good news for those hoping the Dolphins' offensive line pleasantly surprises this upcoming season.
For more information on the treatment and prognosis of ACL injuries, I suggest reading the free educational material hosted on the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeon's official website. Now, with that good news out of the way, it's time to go back to debating football inflation pressures!