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Allen's Rehab Progressing Well

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by PackerLegend, Jan 12, 2007.

  1. PackerLegend

    PackerLegend Cheesehead

    Mar 26, 2006
    Allen's Rehab Progressing Well

    by Mike Spofford, Packers.com
    posted 01/11/2007

    Just two weeks after finishing a grueling 16-game schedule, the offseason is about rest, relaxation and recuperation for most players.

    But for injured players who weren't a part of the regular-season grind in 2006, like defensive tackle Kenderick Allen, there's an entirely different focus.

    "I'm looking forward to putting on some cleats and running," said Allen, who hasn't done so since late September, when a serious foot injury at Detroit's Ford Field prematurely ended his season.

    After a long four months, Allen is about to begin what he hopes are the final rehabilitation stages for his foot. In February, he'll begin running and hopefully doing football-specific drills again, with the idea that he'll be back to full strength by the time the Packers' offseason conditioning program begins on March 19.

    At the time of the injury, Allen had no idea he was in for so much down time. In the first quarter at Detroit on Sept. 24, Allen's foot got caught in the turf and turned awkwardly. He finished the game but soon found out he had stretched some ligaments connecting two of the metatarsal bones in his mid-foot, known as a Lisfranc sprain, and he was placed on injured reserve.

    It was a tough blow for a guy playing for his third team in four years and trying to make a name for himself in the NFL. After playing in 29 games over three years with New Orleans (2003) and the New York Giants (2004-05), mostly as a reserve, Allen signed with the Packers last April.

    He and his 5-year-old son Nicobe quickly developed an affinity for Green Bay's hometown feel, and as they settled into the community it appeared Allen was settling into a role in the Packers' defensive tackle rotation.

    An abdominal injury forced him to miss one week of training camp and one preseason game, but he closed the preseason with three solo tackles in a start against Tennessee. He followed that up with two solo tackles off the bench in the season opener versus Chicago.

    Then came the injury in Week 3, which forced him to keep all weight off his foot for nearly two months. The good news was it didn't require surgery, which Lisfranc sprains often do, but he was on crutches for six weeks and then in a protective boot for another week and a half. Then came the orthotics for his shoes, followed by the running he now does in the pool that will soon progress to real ground.

    In the meantime, it was difficult to watch his defensive teammates for the final 13 games of the season, whether they were struggling early or playing like one of the league's best units in the final month.

    "It's actually hard to watch all of it," Allen said. "Regardless if they're struggling or doing good, you want to be part of it. We all put in the same amount of work through two-a-days and through training camp, so when they were making plays I was like, 'Man I wish I could be making some plays.' When they weren't doing so good, it was like, 'Man, I wish I was out there to pump them up and do a little better.'

    "Good, bad or ugly you want to be part of it."

    Allen certainly hopes he's going to be in the Packers' plans for 2007. His 6-foot-5, 328-pound frame helps him to be an anchor against the run, while his long arms allow him to be active in the middle of the defensive line as well.

    With free agency and the draft upcoming, there's no telling how many names will be on the depth chart at defensive tackle come mini-camp, but with Cullen Jenkins' late-season move from tackle to end on running downs, there's playing time available for the taking.
    The first priority is getting fully healthy, though, and Allen is well on his way to doing that.

    "The whole thing with any injury is confidence," he said. "It's not necessarily the injury healing, because if you believe in the doctor and do everything correctly, it's going to heal. But the thing with getting back is getting your confidence -- getting the confidence that you can plant, that you can jump, that you can burst, that you can run.

    "I've been working on that in the pool, and I'm going to hit the ground the first week of February. The pool is helping me get my confidence, to run and sprint out and not be timid about it."

    The excitement is audible in Allen's comments, in part because he's had plenty of time to put the disappointing injury in perspective.

    "It's hard because you might feel like going through two-a-days was a waste or spending all that time getting in a shape was a waste," he said. "Injury can bring about a bunch of negativity. But I really tried to focus on the positive.

    "It actually gave me more time to get my son used to the change, more time to get my house in order, to work out. I still got to know the guys and got to know the team, because I came to work and did treatment every day. So you have to take the positive from everything, and that's the positive I took from it."
  2. yourout

    yourout Cheesehead

    Aug 19, 2005
    You can't help but cheer for players like this. I hope he bounces back in a big way.
  3. CaliforniaCheez

    CaliforniaCheez Cheesehead

    Apr 13, 2005
    If all DT's remain healthy the Packers will so many that they can afford to trade one.

    Jenkins if signed and yes he is worth it.

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