ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – So far, so good for rookie defensive lineman Adam Gotsis.
Gotsis, who is recovering from a torn ACL, said Tuesday he participated fully in Monday's rookie practice, and that he felt "pretty good" after going through the workout.
"It's still a day-by-day type of thing," Gotsis said. "Obviously as the workload increases, so will the recovery that I will probably have to take. I'm just taking it day by day, listening to my body and the strength staff and athletic training staff. They've done a great job with me and I've got full trust in them to get me right. I think for the time that I've been here they've done a great job getting me into the position that I'm in now."
When he does return, Gotsis said he'll aim to be as versatile as possible along the defensive line. And while he said he feels most comfortable at the defensive end spot, he knows that he'll have to slide inside at times.
He picked up some tips during OTAs by spending time with injured DE Kenny Anunike, who helped Gotsis prepare for when he could finally take reps with the team at full speed.
"Me and him would talk about each play and [I'd] go through it with him," Gotsis said. "So that was good just having him there to talk to. Then just watching the other guys, mistakes they might make, good things they do, you can pick up little things along the way."
As Gotsis mentioned in mid-July, the return to football follows his first trip to Australia in more than 18 months. On Tuesday, he shared the highlights of his trip back to Melbourne.
"I really just met up with some close friends and family," Gotsis said. "That's all I really wanted to see. Just talking to those guys, especially some guys from my high school, it was crazy meeting up with them. I still talk to them a bunch. It was crazy meeting up with them and them from back in high school when I was trying to come over and do the college thing.
"A lot of them were probably like 'Oh, that's not going to work.' They're all just real proud of me and I think that was a pretty cool thing to see—how far I've come since I left being with them every day, to where I am now. It's just good to get back and sit down with those guys and just be a regular guy again, and not be a football player in America where everyone knows your face. That was probably the best part, just being a regular kid from Australia again."
But now that he's found himself a spot on the defending Super Bowl champions, he can look back and laugh at the doubts that he used to face.
"They used to make fun of me back in high school. I used to drink a ton of milk to try and get some size on me. I used to carry around a milk jug at class. They'd make fun of me, but now it's all paid off. I'm doing alright."