ATLANTA -- The night before Roddy White had minor elbow surgery Monday morning, the veteran Atlanta Falcons receiver spent time at teammate Julio Jones' condo. While there, White reiterated to Jones how it would be his first surgery ... ever.
"I think it was in and out, just a scope," Jones said. "I think he's going to recover. He's going to do great. It was just some freak thing that occurred to him. I'm not a doctor, so I really don't know all what's going on with him. But when it's the first (surgery) for anyone, somebody's going to be uncomfortable.
"I think he's going to pull through. ... I think Roddy will be Roddy in Week 1."
He had loose particles in his right elbow, causing swelling. The procedure consistent with his injury is an arthroscopic debridement, which typically calls for four weeks of recovery. The Falcons have 21 days until the season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on ESPN Monday Night Football.
Is the team worried about White not being recovered by then?
"Anytime you have guys that have to get anything done or whatever, you're thinking about them," quarterback Matt Ryan said. "We'll be ready for him whenever he's ready to get back, and (we'll) try to get some good work done the next couple of weeks."
White, 33, entered training camp with the mindset of playing all 16 games this season, even despite having his left knee drained and sitting out minicamp. He looked fresher during training camp and didn't take any days off.
Then White's elbow flared up last Thursday, causing him to miss his team's 30-22 preseason loss to the New York Jets.
Falcons owner Arthur Blank talked about his level of concern regarding White's health.
"Obviously you wish none of your players had surgery," Blank said. "If there's such a thing as a benign surgery -- he had a floating chip in his elbow -- he'll probably be back in a couple weeks. We fully expect him for the first game of the year.
"Roddy would love to play 16 games, and we would love to see him play 16 games."
While White is down, other players will have a chance to earn more touches as the Falcons return to practice Tuesday. Leonard Hankerson already made an impression with a strong offseason and training camp and now moves into the No. 2 receiver role behind Jones. Rookie receiver Justin Hardy and newcomer Nick Williams should get more opportunities to flash with White out of the receiver rotation.
"Anytime you have guys go down, that's part of the nature of football: certain things pop up, and other guys have opportunities to go out there and to get good work in," Ryan said. "We'll have a chance for Hank and some of our young guys to get some more time. Hopefully that will bode well for us moving forward."