Coach Mike Zimmer chatted with local reporters this morning for the first time since early January, a couple of days after the 2016 season ended. He opened the session by joking that he told the PR staff to tell us he was having emergency eye surgery again as a way to get out of talking.
So, since you brought up the eye, where do things stand with that?
Zimmer said that he is still scheduled to have a fifth procedure done on his right eye in April, a couple of weeks before the NFL draft. Because that surgery will prevent him from flying for three weeks, he has been waiting to do it until after this week’s combine and the pro-day circuit.
He added that two months later, he will have cataracts surgery, too.
“Then I’ll be good to go, I think,” Zimmer said. “I mean, hopefully.”
Squinting with his right eye at a reporter who was seated a few feet away, Zimmer said “I can make you out, but you’re blurry.” His doctor told him that after this fourth surgery, his vision in the eye will be about 50 percent better. “And then hopefully after that cataract [surgery] I’ll be good.”
However, Zimmer said he was told that there is a “high likelihood” that he could experience similar vision issues in his other eye down the road.
The 60-year-old head coach continues to maintain a sense of humor about his vision issues. Asked if the blurry vision in one of his eyes has impacted his offseason in anyway, Zimmer replied, “I’m learning to shoot left-handed. … I’m getting pretty good, too, shooting with my left eye.”