Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy was wandering the locker room today for one of the few times since his season-ending injury that occurred when he tore his right biceps at New Orleans back in October. The former first-round draft pick was asked about the state of affairs with Tampa Bay this season and his feelings on being a bystander.
“I can’t speak on actually what is going on because I’m not out there,” McCoy said. “But it's tough to just sit back and watch. It’s tough.
“Me being on injured reserve means I can’t travel to the away games. So I sit in my man cave at home and tell everybody to get out. Just let me just take it all in. That’s how I watch the away games.”
McCoy does all he can to help his young teammates with encouragement and advice.
“I always send a message to the D-line before they leave and tell them I am praying for them and to play as hard as possible and just go out there and do their thing,” McCoy said. “Then at home games, if I see anything I come over and try and relay it to the guys and try and help out as much as possible.”
The former Sooner was having a solid season (13 tackles, four tackles for loss, one sack, and 13 quarterback pressures) at the time of his injury. The biceps tear was almost identical to the one suffered last season, just the other arm. So far the recovery has also been similar.
“[My recovery] is similar to last year,” McCoy said. “No complications. I’m ahead of schedule. My arm isn’t supposed to be able to rotate as it can. But it is. That’s all God’s doing. I’m just hanging in there.”
“I’ll be here a lot (for rehab) but I’m going back out to San Diego for rehab also. They [the Bucs] have already OK'd it. I’ll be here though longer than last year.”
Two of the same injuries have many concerned that McCoy may be injury prone and while his doctors have said there may be something to the fact is potentially chronic, McCoy isn’t concerned with it happening again.
“After it's surgically repaired and healed back up it's very rare for it to tear again,” McCoy explained. “But they think it is kind of a hereditary thing. It's something that just happens. For it to happen to both arms it's kind of rare to see. But it did. But I had my surgery, it's healing up and my left arm is strong as ever and my right arm will be the same.”
McCoy’s frustration continues to mount with each loss knowing he cant do anything to change the situation but looks forward to the recovery and another chance to establish himself next season. McCoy said his rehab would begin to get serious as the New Year approaches.
“In about another week and a half I can start lifting for real. Of course I won’t be as strong as I was, but that’s the whole healing process. That’s why they say it takes 6-12 months to get back full strength. Last year it took me around six months.”