Nick Collins is closer to knowing whether or not he will be allowed to pursue a career in professional football again, but he's not much closer to knowing whether or not he can step onto the field for the Green Bay Packers next season. Collins is home in Florida after undergoing a series of tests in New York this week, according to Rob Demovsky of PackersNews.com. The doctor that performed his surgery, Dr. Frank Cammisa, is expected to provide a recommendation by Monday.
This evaluation is just the next step towards Collins get back onto the field -- assuming he will be physically capable and he wants to return -- but it's nowhere near his last. It's entirely possible that Collins could be told that he can increase the intensity of his workouts and that he can attempt to pursue playing football again, but that doesn't mean that he's actually going to suit up anytime soon.
Collins' agent, Alan Herman, spelled out exactly why this is the case. Quotes from Demovsky in the above-linked piece after the jump.
"You can feel great, but when you take a look at these MRIs there are things that (could) pop up and that are sometimes cause for concern. You maybe be able to do what everybody else does, but can you go out and play football based on what the MRI looks like in terms of the residual damage with these injuries? That's what it comes down to. If you ask him how he feels, he'll tell you he can go out and play football, but that doesn't necessarily mean that his body can withstand the tackling."
Even if Collins is given the all clear by doctors, I'm not counting on him being an impact player this season, but who knows? Whenever guys are written off due to injury or illness and they're able to recover in any sport, they often come back better than they were before they got hurt.