Dr. Flynn: What’s going on with Malcolm Mitchell’s knee?

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Bill Belichick gave an update on Malcolm Mitchell on Sunday, saying the wide receiver is “day to day” with a knee injury that kept him off of the field all of last season.

Mitchell’s knee issues started in college. He tore his right ACL in his junior year at Georgia and had surgery to reconstruct the ligament. A few months later, he required a second surgery to address a cartilage injury. Mitchell had a remarkable rookie year for the Patriots, seemed to click almost immediately with Tom Brady and the offense, and delivered an unforgettable comeback performance in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl 51. Unfortunately, we have not seen much of him since.

In the weeks leading up to Super Bowl 51, the receiver seemed to tweak his right knee during a game against the Jets. Mitchell missed two games after this seemingly minor injury and appeared to struggle at times with knee discomfort for the remainder of the season. He was available for the start of the preseason last year, but repeatedly came up grabbing his right knee in preseason games. Mitchell was placed on injured reserve in early September and, despite efforts to return, was not able to be activated to the Patriot’s roster. He missed a significant portion of OTAs this spring, and just days before training camp was to open, news of a setback and another knee procedure broke.

Knee pain after ACL reconstruction can happen for a variety of reasons