As tight end Derek Schouman walked from the practice field Tuesday there was a wide smile. Partly because he felt his surgically repaired knee held up well in its most extensive work to date, but mostly because of the support he got from his fellow teammates.
"Injuries are a hard thing to deal with," said Schouman, who confirmed that Tuesday was his first day of team work. "You feel alienated a little bit, but the good thing about the guys we've got is there's a real strong sense of team and I saw that (Tuesday). It made me feel good I guess just to know that I'm still part of the team and we're all here for the same purpose."
Veteran Lee Evans shouted, 'Schou is back!' as he jogged past the tight end to the locker room after practice was over.Schoumanalso said he got some high-fives out on the practice field after making his first reception since Week 2 last season against Tampa Bay when he sustained the knee injury.
"It felt great," said Schouman. "That's what I want to be here for is to play football, not stand around and watch. I had a lot of fun. The knee felt great. I was just working in a little slowly and everything is going well."
Though Tuesday was his first action in team drills on the practice field this offseason, Schouman said he has attended all the meetings in the classroom. Still, he feels like he has some ground to make up.
"I'm probably playing catch up," he said. "I missed a lot of on the field stuff, but I've been in the books. Off the field I feel alright there. I feel like I know what's going on. It's just getting the actual reps, being in the huddle and getting used to everything and that'll come with time."
Torbor outsideNewly signed linebacker Reggie Torbor was also on the field for his first day of work since offseason surgery. Torbor had a torn labrum in his shoulder repaired this past January.
"It's not 100 percent right now," he said. "(Tuesday) was my first day out there doing anything since the season ended and it felt pretty good. I have more work to do."
Defensive coordinator George Edwards lined Torbor up at outside linebacker, despite playing primarily inside in Miami's 3-4 the past two seasons.
"Right now I'm playing outside (linebacker)," said Torbor. "I understand that can change on a need basis. So I take that as a positive thing. Right now that's where I'm starting and I'll let you know when there's a change."
Torbor stated that he does not have a specific preference for either position.
"Both positions have their advantages. If you're trying to get sacks, I guess you'd rather be outside. And if you're trying to get tackles it's better to be inside," he said. "I haven't played outside since I was with New York. I'm just in the process of getting back into it today, re-learning out there. It's fun."
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