It was the second week of the season. The Bengals were playing the Denver Broncos in Denver, looking to post their first win in Denver since 1975. With 9:20 left in the third quarter, Andy Dalton hooked up with Jordan Shipley for a five-yard reception. Innocent enough right? It would be Shipley's final play for the 2011 season.
Shipley remained on the ground, clutching his knee after being tackled by Broncos' cornerback Cassius Vaughn. After being helped off the field, it was later revealed that he tore an ACL. The Bengals placed him on injured reserve soon after.
On Friday Jordan Shipley resurfaced with the Bengals, five weeks after having surgery to repair his torn ACL performed by surgeon James Andrews, according to Geoff Hobson at Bengals.com. It was the second time Shipley had surgery, but it was the first one performed on his knee. Typically recovery for an ACL tear takes nine months or more.
However, according to Hobson, Shipley believes that he could return to some football related activities by May. The last time he had surgery was after his 2008 season with the Texas Longhorns ended, with a recovery time of only five months.
Shipley was slated to be the Bengals slot wide receiver this year with rookie A.J. Green and fourth-year receiver Jerome Simpson in three-wide (or more) formations. Shipley, drafted out of Texas in the third round of the 2010 draft, posted 52 passes for 600 yards and three touchdowns. Earlier this year, during the regular season opener against the Cleveland Browns, he only posted one reception and it was for a one-yard loss.