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Williams Quick to Heal

Posted Dec 28, 2005

Darrent Williams continues to progress in his recovery from a pulled groin, and will see action in some football drills this week.


Darrent Williams
Darrent Williams is optimistic about his chances to return in time for the playoffs. PHOTO: JAMIE SCHWABEROW / RICH CLARKSON AND ASSOCIATES

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- It's doubtful that anyone in the Broncos' locker room was more thankful for the first-round playoff bye than rookie cornerback Darrent Williams.

"I'm been giving (teammates) a hard time the last two weeks, telling them you'll have to get that bye for me so I can come back and play," Williams said. "I need that extra week. It spared me another week to get ready."

But this week witnessed a significant step forward in Williams' recovery from a pulled groin, suffered early in the 12-10 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Dec. 11. While he said he's only "about 50 percent" at this juncture, he was back working on a treadmill earlier this week and said that he did some individual drills Tuesday.

"I'm going to try to push myself pretty hard to see how it's going to react," Williams said. "I'm not trying to go out there and do anything crazy or go full speed, like I'm in a game, or reaggravate it. I've got to go out there and test it out. If you don't, you never know where you're at, so I've got to go out there and try to get some distance."

Added Head Coach Mike Shanahan: "He will do some football-related drills this week, which is encouraging. Hopefully he'll be ready for our first playoff game."

As it is, Williams said his recovery has been quicker than expected -- even to him, as he didn't expect to be back in drills this rapidly.

"I've been on the treadmill and stairs (this week), he said. "That's stuff I haven't done since I got hurt, so it's going pretty good. Other guys that had this injury haven't progressed this fast so early. Hopefully I'm a fast healer."

In the first several days after the injury, Williams expressed optimism that he could recover quickly. But those were just words and rhetoric. But the triumvirate of running, working on the treadmill and returning to football drills offers tangible evidence that his optimism was indeed well-founded.

"I was just talking because I'm a dude that wants to come back," Williams said. "Now that I see the speedy recovery, it's coming pretty good now so it's realistic that I should be back."

In the meantime, Williams can enjoy the the fact that the Broncos garnered a bye, and can recover at a more reasonable pace, shooting for Jan. 14 or 15 -- and not the first full weekend of the New Year. Whether he could have played had the Broncos been forced into the wild-card round is now irrelevant.

"It would be hard to say," Williams said of whether he could have played on Jan. 7 or 8. "I'm just starting to run this week, and then to have to play a real game next week -- it would have been hard, but with this (bye) week, it's a little easier."