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McGee still shouldering load

Posted Mar 22, 2010

New England wide receiver Randy Moss is never going to be confused with a Mack truck when it comes to collisions on a football field. At 6’6” and 210 pounds he’s not exactly the picture of power. Tell that to Bills cornerback Terrence McGee, who in a freak Week 15 head on collision with Moss suffered a major shoulder injury that required surgery.

Almost four months removed from the procedure, McGee still has significant ground to cover as his shoulder rehab has put all of his other offseason training on hold.

“I was injured in December and right now I couldn’t do a push-up to save my life,” McGee told Buffalobills.com. “But I’ve been working hard doing rehab on it to get the range of motion on it, but it was way worse than it looked.”

McGee had a severe shoulder separation along with a bicep tear and damage to his rotator cuff and labrum. Surgery has fixed all of the problems, but rehab has been a slow and steady process. Doing anything slow when it comes to football doesn’t sit well with McGee.

“I feel like Homer Simpson because I can’t work out or anything,” he said. “I can’t do a whole lot of anything right now in terms of maintaining a fitness level. The only thing I’ve really been doing is working on getting my range of motion back.”

The Bills cornerback had his shoulder in a sling for two months before he began his range of motion exercises. All of the inactivity has cost him muscle mass as McGee had to buy some new clothes that were not hanging off his body.

“I put on one of those tank top undershirts and I’m not filling it out like I had been,” he said.

McGee is anxious to train and prepare his entire body for the rigors of a regular season, but he knows that his recovering shoulder is the priority.

“It’s definitely annoying because by this time in the offseason I’m working out regularly and doing cardio work and getting ready for the offseason program,” said McGee. “But all I’m allowed to do right now is work with the arm band on range of motion. It’s definitely different from what I’m used to doing at this point in the offseason.”

His hope is that he can begin lifting weights in May. McGee is not worried about regaining his speed and endurance. Where his concern lies is knocking the rust off of his technique following this extended down time in the offseason.

“As far as trying to jam receivers and things like that will be the biggest thing that sets me back in terms of the OTAs and minicamps coming up,” he said. “So obviously the summer is going to be critical for me to go full blast and catch up on a lot of stuff.”

That can be a nerve racking process, even for a proven veteran player like McGee, especially with a new coaching staff on board. Fortunately for him his position coach is unchanged as defensive backs coach George Catavolos was retained by head coach Chan Gailey.

“You definitely want to get out there in practice and show the new staff what you can do,” said McGee. “They’ve seen you on film, but it’s important to show them in person that you can play. So having George still on the staff is a bit reassuring for me. The first time I met the coaches George introduced me and he was hyping me up a little bit so that felt good. But you definitely want the opportunity to impress the new coaches and show them what you’ve got.”

But that in all likelihood will have to wait for McGee. Nevertheless, the veteran cornerback believes if he can begin training in a couple of months he’ll have enough time to be fully prepared for training camp.

“I’ve never had an injury that’s kept me out of OTAs,” he said. “So this is way different for me. I feel like the rehab is going pretty good. I might not see progress every day, but I am seeing a difference in what I can do week by week. So everything looks to be on schedule. That’s why I’m targeting May to really start doing some stuff and catch up with the other guys. If I can start working out in May I should be fine.”

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