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When Will OU Quarterback Sam Bradford Return?

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Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford stands by the team bench with a shoulder wrap after leaving the game against BYU on Saturday. (AP Photo) Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford stands by the team bench with a shoulder wrap after leaving the game against BYU on Saturday. (AP Photo)
Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford has his shoulder wrapped up by staff members at the start of the second half of the Sooners' game against Brigham Young on Saturday. (AP Photo) Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford has his shoulder wrapped up by staff members at the start of the second half of the Sooners' game against Brigham Young on Saturday. (AP Photo)

News9.com

NORMAN, Oklahoma -- Sooner quarterback Sam Bradford is expected to miss at least 2 to 4 weeks after he sustained a shoulder injury during the season opener against BYU.

Bradford's suffering what was originally diagnosed as an AC joint sprain in his right throwing shoulder. Sunday, OU Offensive Coordinator Kevin Wilson said the Heisman trophy winner is undergoing further evaluation, but they have not released how much time OU's quarterback will miss.

The injury happened on the next to last play of the first half, leaving Bradford in obvious, immediate pain.

Depending on the severity of the sprain, speculation is that he could miss a few as 2-4 weeks, or could be out for the season.

NEWS 9 spoke with an orthopedic surgeon about what kind of rehab Bradford could be facing.

Dr. Tim Gieb, an orthopedic surgeon, said Sam Bradford's injury isn't uncommon and something usually seen in a running back. However, if the joint sprain is bad enough and enough tendons are damaged, the injury could elevate to the collar bone.

There are six stages to a sprained AC joint, 1 being the best 6 the worst. Now without looking at Bradford's x-rays, Dr. Gieb, who specializes in shoulder related sports injuries, believes at worst Bradford is looking at a stage 3 which could sideline an athlete between 6 to 8 weeks, maybe more.

"Initially, he'll have try to regain full painless range of motion, make sure his strength is back to normal and resume normal throwing motion. Once he does those, I think he can get back on the field and try to compete at the same level he was at before," Dr. Gieb said.

The orthopedic surgeon said if the injury happened to a lineman for instance, the athlete could make a quick return, but Bradford's quarterback status will likely lengthen the time he spends on the sidelines.

"Athletes do fairly well with this injury if this injury is fairly mild. The more severe it is it's hard to say," Dr. Gieb said.

NEWS 9's Dean Blevins learned it is a grade 3 sprain, which means there's probably a torn ligament.

Some players come back in a few weeks, but many have surgery and are out for the season.

Blevins said there's not a lot of optimisim in Norman about Bradford or Jemaine Gresham, who has cartilage damage in his right knee and didn't play in the season opener.

Blevins said he would be surprised if Sam Bradford plays again this year, but hopes he's wrong.

More on News9.com:
- OU Falls to BYU After Injury Sidelines Sam Bradford
- Oklahoma Sports Blitz Top 25 College Teams

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