The Chicago Bulls go into their first round playoff match-up against the Brooklyn Nets short handed. Their star player and arguably one of the top players in the entire league, Derrick Rose, has been sidelined for the entire season as he recovers from tearing his ACL towards the end of last season. There were rumors that Rose would be back for the playoffs, but he has been ruled out for the first series, and will likely miss the entirety of the playoffs. Many people in Chicago and in the media have questioned Rose's recovery time and his toughness for not being able to get himself back on the court. Why? I blame Adrian Peterson.
To me there are two main reasons why Adrian Peterson was able to recover so quickly from his injury, and neither one of them are a case against Rose. The fact of the matter is that they are two different people. Every single person is different from every single other person. The fact that Peterson was able to recover in nine months from a significant knee injury does not mean that every other person who suffers a similar injury will be able to recover in a similar time frame. Maybe it's just in Peterson's genetics that he is going to be able to recover faster than Rose from this type of injury. This isn't a knock on Rose, it's just a medical fact. Everyone recovers at their own rate. I know for a fact that, were I to suffer the same injury, I would be completely bed-ridden for probably as long as it took Peterson to completely recover. Rose should feel no pressure to recover in the same amount of time as Peterson because they are different people, playing different sports. Their timetables should not be comparable, but that wouldn't give the sports writers anything to write about, so they insist on making unfair comparisons, then viciously criticize when a player fails to meet their unrealistic standards.
The second reason for Peterson's recovery is something that I just hinted at. They play VERY different sports. Peterson plays a sport where the average shelf-life for his position is three years. Peterson has already surpassed that, so his career could be over at any moment. He has added motivation to get back on the field because he knows that, even if he isn't quite 100%, he needs to be out there because if he's not, he may never see the field again. We've seen it happen time and again that a player in the NFL has a serious injury and never gets his spot back on the team (Trent Green is the one that stands out most in my mind). Rose doesn't have that issue. He plays a sport that is a lot less physical than Peterson's and one where you can have a long career. For Rose to come back before he's completely recovered from his injury would be putting his future in jeopardy. Rose is a player that can be a legitimate MVP candidate for the next decade if he is fully healthy. Where Peterson may lose his job if he doesn't get back as soon as he can, no one is taking Rose's job and he has the luxury of being able to rehab at his own pace and not play until he is fully, completely recovered.
Welcome! My name is Chris Spooner. I am an overly-passionate Dolphins fan who has many opinions about his team, and the sports landscape as a whole. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy voicing them.