The San Francisco 49ers drafted cornerback Will Redmond on Friday, and it sounds like the team expects him to contribute right away, in spite of an October ACL injury. Trent Baalke spoke to the media Friday after the selection, and he said the expectation is that Redmond will be ready for the start of training camp. Redmond himself said he expects to play in 2016.
No two ACL injuries are alike. The 49ers have sat numerous players who had previous college season ACL injuries. However, an ACL torn in October or November does not preclude players from returning the following year. If it's a straight ACL injury without complications, a comeback can happen. We saw Adrian Peterson tear his ACL in December and return the following September. We saw Kyle Williams tear his ACL in November, and return the following year.
It is possible this is all BS, but this is the most specific Baalke has been when it comes to an ACL All Star. If he can compete in camp, he will be looking at nickel and dime work as a rookie. Jimmie Ward is the nickel back, but this defense cannot have enough depth across the board. There will be extra defensive snaps due to Chip Kelly's offensive scheme, so the more defensive options to rotate in, the better. Now we'll just see how Redmond's knee holds up.