PHOENIX — For most, it’s difficult to find meaning in the Pro Bowl. But that’s not the case for Saints fans this year.
New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham used last week’s exhibition as a barometer for whether or not he would need surgery to repair a nagging shoulder injury. He has determined an operation is not needed.
“I’ve been doing rehab and I’m going to start back on my rehab Monday and really there’s going to be no surgery,” Graham told SiriusXM radio. “I’m just going to do rehab, strengthen the area. That’s what’s best — not having to take six months off and try to heal up with a surgery, but now have those six months to work on all things I need to to try and hopefully get to a place like (the Super Bowl) next year.”
Graham initially injured his shoulder during a Week 5 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Coming out of a Week 6 bye, Graham was limited to 30 snaps in the next game against the Detroit Lions.
Graham rebounded after the injury, but faded down the stretch, catching 20 passes for 219 yards over the final five games.
While he hinted that his shoulder was an issue during an early December interview with The Advocate, Graham admitted Friday that it was a bigger issue than he initially let on.
“It was something that really needed some rest and unfortunately it wasn’t able to get that during the season,” he said. “It happened early and then you have about 10 straight weeks of trying to make it to the game. Now after having about three or four weeks and last week kind of testing it at the Pro Bowl, it feels great.”