This was something I wondered about the other day. Fortunately, the Newport News Daily Press' Norm Wood (who's had some great stuff this past week) came through Wednesday with an update on the Straight Burner, Virginia Tech wide receiver Dyrell Roberts.
Roberts missed the final five games of the season with compartment syndrome in his left thigh after suffering the injury against Georgia Tech. He's just now able to walk without crutches and isn't allowed to jog or do any leg workouts. He told Wood he's not optimistic about returning for spring practice, but he insists he'll be back for the start of the 2011 season:
"There's no question I'll be back next (season)," said Roberts, a junior who missed Tech's last five games this season due to the injury, but still finished third on the team with 21 catches for 303 yards and two touchdowns. "I should be ready to go some time during the summer. If not then, going into (preseason practices) I know I'll be ready."
If we learned anything from Barquell Rivers' injury, it's that we don't need to be rushing guys back onto the field after significant injury. I'm fine with Roberts missing spring drills, continuing his rehab on schedule and taking his time to come back healthy for next season.
The Hokies built up some quality depth at wide receiver, so Roberts can afford be careful to avoid any set backs. He's going to be an important weapon for the Hokies on offense next year, but I'd rather he get the strength back in his legs before coming back rather than rushing back to the field.
Roberts' confidence about the 2011 season is good news for fans that worried about whether or not he'd be able to return to a Tech uniform. Now that we're all but sure he'll be back the only question is how long it takes him to get back to full speed.