The Miami Dolphins pulled off a blockbuster trade back in the spring to acquire All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Pairing him with Xavien Howard immediately gave Miami one of the top secondaries in the league and set up the Dolphins’ defense to shut down opposing offenses. Miami, with a track-meet offense, had a defense to handle anything opponents tried to do to keep up with the Dolphins’ scoring.
During training camp, everything came crashing down as Ramsey was carted to the locker room with an apparent injury to his left knee. Surgery would be required to repair a torn meniscus and Ramsey’s 2023 season was placed in jeopardy. Miami waited until the start of the regular season to place Ramsey on injured reserve with the thought that a quick recovery could allow the team to bring him back late in the season or for the playoffs.
Ramsey was not hearing that timetable however. The cornerback repeatedly said he would be back faster than the reported timelines. He would be ready to play sometime in early December, or possibly even late November. Ramsey was not going to be satisfied with being on the sidelines while the Dolphins were playing.
It now appears, even those accelerated timelines may have been too conservative. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the Dolphins could have Ramsey back at practice as early as next week. Under NFL rules, a team has 21 days from designating a player for return and having him start practice to either put him back on the active 53-man roster, or to leave him on IR for the remainder of the season. If Miami were to start Ramsey’s 21-day clock next week, they could slowly work him back into game shape, keeping him practicing as the team prepares for the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 7, the New England Patriots in Week 8, and the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 9. Miami’s bye week is Week 10, giving Ramsey another week to reach 100 percent health before a Week 11 game against the Las Vegas Raiders.
Could Ramsey be back on the field by mid-November? The Dolphins have a history of being very careful with the return of injured players, and that likely will not change with Ramsey, but designating him for return next week could signal Miami will be seeing a major reinforcement getting close to playing.