Sav Rocca to have surgery; Pierre Garcon to seek multiple opinions

January 7, 2013

Sav Rocca has played for much of the season with a torn meniscus in his right knee.

Redskins punter Sav Rocca said Monday he will have surgery to repair a torn meniscus in right knee, but believes he could be kicking again by the spring. Meanwhile, wide receiver Pierre Garcon said he is holding out hope that he can avoid surgery on his problematic toe.

Rocca, who has punted with the injury since late October, said he will have the surgery in his native Australia, where he makes his offseason home, and will rehab there as well.

Despite the injury to his kicking leg, Rocca averaged 43.9 yards per punt – a career-best. He said he doesn’t know exactly how long his recovery will take, but expects it to be speedy.

“It depends on how extensive the meniscus tear is,” Rocca said. “But the plan is that I should be able to start punting in April, way before I’ll be able to get back here.”

Rocca just completed the final season of a two-year deal he signed with Washington last season. But he hopes to remain in Washington and believes he can remain effective even though he will turn 40 in November.

“I want to get another two or three years out. I enjoy it and enjoy playing,” Rocca said. “The family and myself really enjoy being over here and taking part in it. We’ll see how long we can take it out. … I feel like this team’s going in the right direction. We’ve got a good quarterback – a good up-and-coming team – and I think in the next two years, this team can really make a push for the Super Bowl and I want to be around when that happens.”

Garcon, however, said that he wants to do everything possible to avoid surgery to repair a torn ligament in the second toe of his right foot.

The receiver, who last spring signed a five-year, $42.5 million deal with $20.5 million guaranteed, suffered the injury early in the season-opener against New Orleans while scoring on an 88-yard reception.

Garcon missed six of the next eight games because the pain was too great for him to push off, change direction or run with any explosiveness.

Garcon returned after the bye in Week 10 and played the next seven regular season games, recording 36 catches for 480 yards and three touchdowns during that unbeaten streak.

Garcon said the pain hasn’t subsided, but that he has learned to play with the pain. Asked what his offseason would likely entail, Garcon said, “See a couple doctors, get a couple opinions and see what’s the best route to go about for getting it healed up to 100 percent.”

He bristled at the notion of surgery, however.

“That’s the LAST thing,” Garcon exclaimed. “Hopefully surgery is not an option, but if I get enough doctors to say I need surgery, then surgery it is. But, if I can limp around for seven more years, I’ll probably limp around for seven more years and be all right.”

Meanwhile, running back Roy Helu, who spent the final 15 weeks of the regular season on Injured Reserve with turf toe and Achilles’ tendon injuries in both legs, said Monday that his toe has yet to heal.

Helu said “sprained ligaments and capsules” remain in his big toes. He is now able to jog, but still experiences pain off and on.

“I haven’t tried to sprint yet. It’s just random when the pain comes, mostly when I get on my toes, which is really a sprinter’s position,” Helu said.

The second-year pro said surgery wasn’t needed, however, and expressed optimism that he will heal by some time this spring.

“I’ll be definitely ready for OTAs [in May], but the timetable of staying [at Redskins Park to rehab], I’m not sure yet.”

Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.
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Mark Maske · January 7, 2013