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It's Time and Willie Colon's Ready to Roll

Posted Jul 27, 2014

Jets' Veteran RG Comes Off Active/PUP List for Individual Drills at Today's Camp Practice

After a long offseason during which he had two surgeries after injuries to his biceps and knee, Willie Colon began Jets training camp on the Active/PUP as he was in the process of finishing his rehab. Today, to the delight of other offensive linemen, coaches and Colon himself, he was removed from the PUP list and actively participated in positional drills.

“I didn’t feel bad at all,” the guard said after practice today. “It’s different when you’re in there longer and you’re doing more reps. I’ve yet to do that, so I can’t really grade where I’m at. It’s about me going out there, being efficient and trying to get into the swing of things.”

He did not participate in team drills, but he hopes to gradually increase his workload as training camp moves forward, starting Tuesday, after the team’s day off.

Colon said that the three days he spent on Active/PUP made him eager to get back into the lineup to work on his rapport with the other linemen, especially T Breno Giacomini, whom the team signed in the offseason.

“It’s been a mental grind, but it’s football. I’ve been doing it, I’ve been dealing with it,” Colon said. “I think I was just more eager to get out there with Nick [Mangold] and obviously having Breno [Giacomini] here, I kind of want to get going with him so our communication can be great because chemistry is huge for an offensive line. I’ve just been really eager about that. Right now, it’s time and I’m ready to go.”

Colon wasn’t the only one excited about his return. Head coach Rex Ryan, who said earlier in the week he could see how eager he was to get back on the field, said that his return would greatly benefit his unit.

“You always want that offensive line to work together, no doubt you want that," Ryan said. "Having Willie today in the individuals, we’ve talked about double teams specifically, and he was in there for some of those double team drills. He looked really good.”

Oday Aboushi, who’s been rotating guard positions during practice with Brian Winters in Colon’s absence, said his return was nice, but just because he wasn’t on the field didn’t mean his leadership stopped.

“Willie is one of our older guys, he’s one of our leaders on the team, especially in the offensive line room,” he said. “When he was sitting out there watching us, he was always critiquing us and telling us what we can get better at. For him to be in the group with us this time and actually working with us, it was good to have him.”

The rehab process and returning from serious injuries is something with which Colon is unfortunately familiar. While a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers, he suffered two season-ending injuries in consecutive years.

Colon, however, refuses to dwell on the negative aspects of recovering from injuries and accepts that process as a result of his profession.

“I think the key is not giving up on yourself. Sometimes you’re going to have the dog days and the ‘Oh, woe is me’ feelings. I’ve never been that guy,” he said. “It’s football, you’re going to get hurt. It’s about you taking care of yourself, doing everything necessary so you can go out there and play. That’s what I’ve been doing.”


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