The study actually had a 'matched control' group.
Background: Achilles tendon injuries are common in sports, including football. The purpose of this study was to determine (1) return-to-sport rate in National Football League (NFL) players following Achilles tendon repair, (2) postoperative career length and games per season, (3) pre- and postoperative performance, and (4) postoperative performance compared with control players matched by position, age, years of experience, and performance.
Publicly available records were used to identify NFL players who underwent Achilles tendon repair and matched controls were identified. Ninety-five players (98 surgeries) were analyzed (mean age 28.2 ± 2.8 years; mean 5.5 ± 2 .8 years in NFL at time of surgery). Demographic and performance data were collected. Comparisons between case and control groups and preoperative and postoperative time points were made using paired-samples Student t tests. **
@SteelCityColt could explain the statistical portion much better than I can.
There's really only two surgical methods used to stitch the tendon back together, I pointed them out above. Any (likely team) orthopedic surgeon or foot/ankle specialist can do it. Players pick special doctors, but people (everyday Joe and Jane's) can and do get non-surgical or operative Achilles repair as indicated by skilled surgeons in their own town.
Feel free to read it, and critique the methods, data, and results if you wish.
The study is above, I think you should read it in its entirety then comment Here's another performed from 2009-2014 that paints an even more grim picture.
v v v
"80 NFL players were identified as having primary Achilles tendon tears between the 2009 and 2014 seasons. RTP (return to play) was defined as playing in a regular season or postseason game following injury. Probability of RTP was modeled as a function of time after injury in Kaplan-Meier analysis with demographic variables assessed via generalized linear models. Twelve players (15%) experienced a subsequent Achilles tendon tear during or after the study period and were included in the overall RTP rate but were excluded from performance analyses owing to the confounding effects of an ipsilateral retear or contralateral tear."
Rate of RTP (return to play) following primary Achilles tendon tears may be lower than previously published. (not reflected in the above study though). However, for those able to return, performance only in the season immediately following injury appears to be affected; players return to preinjury levels if given the opportunity to play >1 season after injury. **
The interesting take from them is in bold/italics.
I've mentioned this before- I feel the patient/athletes biological makeup and their dedication to rehab have a much bigger influence in RTP than the typical skill of a properly executed surgical repair.
They do what they can.
The Colts have $22M in cap space for 2021 but any extension they hand out won’t apply against 2021 cap. They have $90M in projected 2022 cap space. Braden and Maniac will cost about $35M combined. They have $22M in 2021 to spend on LT plus $55M in 2022 with the Quarterback, Defensive Line, Linebacker and Offensive Line basically set. This doesn't include rollover money.
Marvell is coming back after sitting out the season due to Covid and I'm not ready to give up on Rock yet. Potentially, Ballard won't be in a position to draft Stingley or Elam because he might not have a 1st round pick next year and the CB draft class in 2022 not really deep. My question is, will Ballard be in a position to sign someone like Conley's Ohio State teammate Marshon Lattimore if the Saints let him walk? There has been talk about Lattimore coming to the Colts on this forum before.