Mike Pouncey started and — most importantly — finished his third straight game for the Dolphins Sunday and said his troublesome hip feels “great.”
However, he knows that won’t always be the case. He missed all but five games in 2016 because of the joint. And his career length could be determined by how it holds up.
Pouncey told reporters after the Dolphins’ 20-0 loss to the Saints that doctors expect he will need replacement surgery in the next “five to 10 years.”
When asked if that is the window for his career, Pouncey said: “We'll see. I can't predict the future. I'm listening to a doctor tell me. I feel right now, I don't need one. But we'll see.”
Pouncey added that his hip “always feels tight. ... I don't have a normal hip.”
Pouncey has had surgery on both hips in the last few years and underwent stem cell therapy on the most serious one during the offseason.
If Pouncey indeed needs replacement surgery in the next five years, he will be just 33 years old. The Dolphins are strictly managing his workload during the week to prevent a recurrence.
He practices on Wednesdays, the Dolphins’ most intensive day of the week, and then takes Thursday off.
“I know it's the best thing for my hip, not only this year, but for my whole career,” Pouncey said. “I'm going to be smart about it, because they've got a great plan in place.”