Throughout his football career, Darrelle Revis says he's been hit in the knee a thousand times. However nothing compared to what his knee endured last month in Miami.
As the Jets were facing the Dolphins on Sept. 23, Revis' left knee buckled without contact on a screen pass late in the third quarter. Lying on the field, No. 24 grabbed his knee as all of Jets Nation feared the worst.
"I knew it was something different," Revis said this morning, speaking to reporters for the first time since before the injury occurred. "I just knew this wasn't a hyperextension in the knee. I knew it was something more worse."
The injury was a season-ending left ACL tear. When Revis was informed of the news, he instantly knew he wouldn't be back on the field in 2012.
"I just had to grab my brain around that," he said.
The All Pro cornerback will undergo his surgery Tuesday morning in New York City. It will be performed by New York Giants team doctor Russell Warren. Following the surgery, it should take 12-16 weeks before he can start jogging again.
"I've never been hurt," Revis said. "Not in my high school career or college career. It happened here in the pros, so it's different. It really is."
Before his ACL injury, Revis missed the Jets' game against Pittsburgh in Week 2 as he was sidelined from a concussion he got in the season opener against Buffalo. Head coach Rex Ryan placed him on injured reserve Friday after holding back on the move for two weeks.
"Now I'm on IR, and it's best for the team because we've got a lot of guys hurt or banged up," he said. "I understand that decision."
The sixth-year pro said he has communicated with numerous athletes that have experienced ACL tears, listing Adrian Peterson, Donovan McNabb, former NBA player Derek Anderson and teammates Antonio Cromartie and Sione Po'uha all as individuals he's spoken with.
"I've been educated a lot on this and you hear all these stories of other guys with ACLs and they tell you their stories," Revis said. "The thing I'm trying to do is just learn as much as I can and try to do this thing the right way so I can get back on the field."
He said Ryan has invited him to continue sitting in on defensive team meetings but he has politely declined.
"I just feel like my focus needs to be on my knee," he said. "Nothing wrong with being in there, but I just don't want to give a distraction to my teammates, being injured. They're trying to focus and they're trying to win games."
The 5"11' 198-pounder obviously wishes he could be on the field with his teammates. But he firmly believes that everything happens for a reason.
"This is something that happened in my career," Revis said. "You can't take that second back from the ACL tear in the game."
Whenever he is ready to return to the field, Revis is confident he will be the same player he was when he left it. He plans to treat the recovery process as an offseason period and hopes to get back to full health as soon as possible. "People might think this is a setback, but to me it's OK," he said. "I know injuries happen for a reason. You know the concussion happened for a reason. That's just what happened. But I just have to work hard and do what I've always been doing."