ANDERSON – It wasn’t a deep post, a comeback or an in-route.
Instead, it was one of the simplest tasks a football player completes, beginning back in the days of pee wee.
“As far as the rehab part, I've ran every route. Either it was here in Indiana, in Indianapolis or it was down in Miami,” Wayne says. “I've grabbed coaches and trainers down at the University of Miami and I've said, 'Alright, I know you wanted to be a DB at some point in your life, this is your chance to do it.' They did their best and I've done everything I wanted to do. I've run every route and there is nothing that's holding me back.
“There's nothing that's keeps me from doing whatever it is they want me to do so I'm here. Knock on wood I stay on top of this and keep going from there.”
When Wayne reported to Anderson, the racecar theme wasn’t just for show.
He would be practicing the following day, a little more than 10 months after tearing his ACL.
A pitch count from those above has Wayne taking his share of reps before ice rests on his knee for the remainder of practice.
During the rehab process, Wayne grew even closer to teammates like
To see both of them go down during camp has been difficult, but Wayne knows that’s far out of his control.
“I get the whole thing, taking it easy, being smart. I do respect it. But the only thing I can do is pray about it and go out there and do the things I've been doing. One thing about it, it's already written and there is nothing I can do about that,” the six-time Pro Bowler says.
“It's tough to see, but hopefully as far as my part of the deal, hopefully I continue to just get better. Hopefully my progression continues to get better and I can just go out there and be the Reggie of old.”
Wayne has passed all his tests throughout the rehab process.
The ultimate one awaits on September 7, but there are intermediate chances between now and then to see if the 35-year old is completely ready.
A slate of four preseason games begin on August 7 and Wayne isn’t quite ready to commit to live action against opposing teams.
“I’ve been slightly thinking about that,” Wayne says of playing in a preseason game. “I really don’t want my first tackle to be in the regular season game. I’d rather kind of get it out of the way. When that happens, I don’t know. I really don’t know what the coaches have planned for me.
“I don’t know how many snaps I need. I do understand that I do love the game of football and I want to play. I want to be out there. I want to be with my teammates. As far as the preseason, we’ll just play it by ear and see what they have in store for me. I’m truly going to take precaution but I do not want my first tackle, my first collision, to be a regular season game.”