The timetable for a full recovery varies upon how extensive and elaborate the surgery is. Several small holes are drilled into the knee to promote cartilage growth. Blood and bone marrow seep out of these "fractures" creating blood clots that release cartilage-building cells.
Over the last few years more and more NFL players are electing to have microfracture surgery done, including current and former teammates of Steve Smith. NY Giants safety, Kenny Phillips can be a great sources of information and motivation for Smith as well as former USC teammate, Reggie Bush who had the surgery done in 2009.
So...lets say Steve Smith does not receive microfracture surgery and has traditional ACL surgery, what does that mean for the Giants star wide receiver.
Week 17 of the NFL season in 2010, Pats stud receiver Wes Welker tore his ACL & MCL. 6 months later he did the impossible and made his Patriots training camp appearance. With 6 hours of rehab a day, Welker pushed himself to get the knee healthy and ready to go. Work ethic and a healthy frame of mind can be a difference maker...one day at a time.
Steve Smith, one of the best route runners in NFL will be missed, but will be back in Giants blue in 2011.