Miami Dolphins

Dolphins don’t rule out major knee surgery for Ryan Tannehill

Ryan Tannehill, right, is the Dolphins’ biggest unknown heading into the season.
Ryan Tannehill, right, is the Dolphins’ biggest unknown heading into the season.

The Dolphins have not ruled out the possibility of Ryan Tannehill needing major reconstructive surgery on his injured left knee, a procedure that would presumably sideline their starting quarterback for their offseason program — if not the start of training camp.

Tannehill sprained both his ACL and MCL in December, but the Dolphins kept him on the active roster in hopes of him returning before their season ended.

Tannehill practiced the Friday before Miami’s playoff loss to the Steelers, but was not healthy enough to play. He did not rule out needing to go under the knife when he met with reporters last week.

But there are different types of surgery. Some procedures would only keep Tannehill weeks. However, reconstructive ACL surgery is a six to nine-month setback. The Dolphins had previous said that they expect Tannehill to participate in their offseason program.

“We're still going through that process right now with the trainers, with what our next step is, what his health is, how strong is his knee?” Dolphins coach Adam Gase said. “We're still going through that. We're still collecting information. Doctors are still giving us what possibly could be down the road, so it's hard for us to really pinpoint anything, as of this moment right now.”

When asked directly if Tannehill would need a significant surgical procedure, Gase said he did not have have an answer at this time, because “that hasn't been a question we dove into quite yet.”

Meanwhile, Gase had no issue with the NFL and NFLPA looking into whether the Dolphins properly followed the concussion protocol after Matt Moore took a vicious shot to the head in the Steelers game. Moore missed just one snap after being cleared by both independent and team doctors. Moore’s agent said Tuesday that the quarterback has not experienced any concussion symptoms since the hit.

The league and the union are “doing exactly what they should do,” Gase said.

Adam H. Beasley: 305-376-3565, @AdamHBeasley

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