Sharrif Floyd’s playing career is threatened by a nerve issue in his right knee caused by last September’s surgery to repair his meniscus, a league source told the Star Tribune.
Floyd, one of the Vikings’ three first-round picks in 2013, missed all but one game last season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. Complications from the operation have affected a nerve and the quadriceps in his right leg, which still aren’t working properly six months later. He is continuing to rehab with the hope of a full recovery, the source said.
USA Today first reported Floyd’s condition.
Floyd, 25, is signed for next season under a fifth-year option, which the Vikings exercised last May. His $6.757 million was protected against injury, so the Vikings could not have cut or restructured Floyd’s contract before his salary was fully guaranteed at the start of the new league year March 9.
Brian Mackler, Floyd’s agent, did not respond to multiple requests for comment but told USA Today that “Sharrif is rehabbing, has seen some of the best doctors in the country, will continue to rehab and hopefully this will heal sooner than later.”
Leg injuries have stunted the quick-footed Floyd, who has missed 20 games and parts of more in the past three seasons. He has undergone at least two other knee operations, including one in 2015 to remove cartilage from his left knee that forced him to miss most of four games.
Floyd hasn’t spoken publicly since his latest surgery but posted a cryptic message on his Instagram account last week “to the big guy #upabove.”
“I’m down on one knee praying my road doesn’t end here,” Floyd wrote. “There are so many more lives to touch, so much more joy to spread. You’ve believed in me for to long to turn your back now. Don’t let me go out this way. All I ask is for a fighting chance… this game means so much to me and the foundation is still being laid one stone at a time.”
The Vikings shed little light last season on Floyd’s status while he remained away from the team for nearly three months after September surgery. He wasn’t placed on injured reserve until December, when coach Mike Zimmer maintained Floyd had only undergone the one surgery on his right knee.
The operation was performed by Dr. James Andrews at the Andrews Institute in Pensacola, Fla., the team announced at the time. To no avail, the Vikings sent Floyd to see specialists for his knee throughout last season.
USA Today reported Floyd actually needed an additional procedure last fall on his knee. However, the nerve issue impacting his quad has continued into this offseason.
Since Floyd was taken 23rd overall in the 2013 draft, he’s compiled 57 solo tackles, 9.5 sacks and a forced fumble in 44 games.
With Floyd’s playing future unknown, the Vikings signed former Packers defensive end Datone Jones in free agency this month and plan on moving him to Floyd’s position. Pass-rush specialist Tom Johnson is also under contract, but the Vikings have been scouting defensive tackles in the upcoming draft.